Although Netflix was already a hub for documentaries before Beasts of No Nation dropped in late 2015, the Idris Elba-led movie kicked off the streaming service's venture into original filmmaking, from powerful dramas to ridiculous comedies. Netflix's latest movie, To All The Boys I've Loved Before (based on the same-named novel by Jenny Han), is out today, and stars X-Men: Apocalypse's Lana Condor as Lara Jean, a young girl who writes letters to her past crushes that are only meant for her, but finds herself thrown for a loop when those letters are sent out to the boys she's liked. Reviews for To All The Boys I've Loved Before have started flowing in, and overall, it sounds like this is one of Netflix's better original movies to date.
Starting off, The Los Angeles Times' Katie Walsh mentioned that while To All The Boys I've Loved Before, which has billed as a rom-com, has more romantic elements than comedy, there's still quite a bit to appreciate in its take on teen love. She especially enjoyed Noah Centineo's performance as Peter Kavinsky, one of Lara Jean's crushes.
Centineo is the big beating heart at the center of the somewhat reserved To All The Boys I've Loved Before. He's a lot like his character, bringing out the best in this love story.
Kate Erbland from Indiewire gave To All The Boys I've Loved Before a B grade, commenting that while the movie isn't an exceptional entry in the rom-com genre, there's still enough about it to enjoy.
To All the Boys keeps a tight grip on the formula of every rom-com and adapts it for the younger set. Every beat of the film might be obvious, but that doesn't detract from the enjoyability of watching an indelible young heroine like Lara Jean figure out her own life and just maybe fall in love in the process.
Collider's Matt Goldberg had a similar take on To All The Boys I've Loved Before, giving it a B+ grade and noting that while he initially thought he would't like the movie, it won him over in the opening minutes and he appreciated the "remarkable balance between the emotions of young love while never getting caught up in angst."
On the surface, To All The Boys I've Loved Before seemed like it wouldn't be my jam, but it charmed me immediately and didn't let go. It's a smart, funny, sweet, winning movie, and I was constantly amazed by how much I enjoyed it.
But not everyone was particularly impressed by To All The Boys I've Loved Before. The Hollywood Reporter's Leslie Felperin stated in her review that the most interesting thing about the movie was that director Susan Johnson and screenwriter Sofia Alvarez were able to keep the "very thinly plotted high concept aloft for so long."
Technically, it's a standard-issue package, with only a little extra dazzle applied to the well-conceived costumes and production design that are on point for the milieu.
But so far, the majority consensus towards To All The Boys I've Loved Before is positive, with Linda Holmes from NPR saying that the movie is a "fizzy and endlessly charming" adaptation that is filled with heart.
The film is precisely what it should be: pleasing and clever, comforting and fun and romantic. Just right for your Friday night, your Saturday afternoon, and many lazy layabout days to come.
You can judge To All The Boys I've Loved Before for yourself on Netflix now. If you're interested in what other movies the streaming service has lined up, check out our handy guide. If you're more interested in what's coming to a traditional theatrical setting, look through our 2018 release schedule.