Hey Netflix, Wake Up

 

I remember growing up with classic films on Disney Channel such as Pixel Perfect, Zenon and Seventeen Again. I would watch those movies for years and they eventually fell into the “childhood classics” category of my favorite movies. Recently, I’ve been obsessed with rom-com’s, specifically the Netflix Originals that have been released lately. A few that have been released within the past few months include To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and Sierra Burgess is a Loser.

Now, I’ve been a bit skeptical about these movies. It seems that this newer generation has their own form of youth romance that just doesn't sit well with me. I know that I’m not much older than the current high schoolers, but there seems to be a bit of an age gap that leaves me wondering what is really going on with the youth. If you’re unfamiliar with the two movies I referenced, I’ll give you all a synopsis. 

In To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, the main character, Laura Jean, is in a fake relationship with a guy that she had a crush on for years. She is in this pretend relationship because her sister's ex-boyfriend believes that she is in love with him. Laura Jean eventually falls in love with her pretend boyfriend and that’s pretty much how it ends.

Sierra Burgess is a Loser is just a skip-through film. Sierra (who is written to be a loser with only one friend) is thrown into a catfish relationship with a guy from a rival high school. She makes a deal with one of the popular girls to help her keep up with her relationship. The popular girl pretends to be Sierra for facetime calls and in-person dates. The movie ends with the guy finding out that Sierra is the one he’s been talking to and he falls in love with her. The popular girl ends up being best friends with Sierra, even though Sierra betrays her during the movie.

My question for the writers of these films would be “where is the creativity?” The films lack originality, especially Sierra Burgess is a Loser. Casting a thicker girl with less attractive features, putting her into clothes that are not fitting for her body type and then throwing her into this typical high school situation is just laziness at this point.

I would like to challenge screenwriters to take a look at their audience before creating these films. We’re no longer living in the 70s where this make-believe “popular girl is friends with the loser” situations are seen as original. I guess the real problem isn’t with the youth but with their portrayal by the media.