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Summer Streaming: A Review of Netflix’s The Kissing Booth 2

This article will be an inside look at what I thought of Netflix's sequel to The Kissing Booth, although I’m not even sure where to begin. There are so many things wrong with this movie. From the big picture, it’s a cute romance. But on looking at the finer details, I want to review it all from the toxic friendship, the lies, the humiliation and literally everything else most people hated about high school.

1. To start off, I want to bring up the fact that Elle texts Noah “take care.” First, no one in high school ever says stuff like that; and even if they did, no one would send it out of the blue, especially over text. When the screen shows her phone with the message, there isn't even a previous conversation. She started a new message just to send “take care.” Who does that? [bf_image id="qaotea-2sdfc-b2dtvj"]

2. A second thing to take a closer look at would be her reasons behind wanting to to apply to Harvard and Berkeley. Berkeley had always been Elle’s plan and she intended to go with her best friend, Lee, because the college was the birthplace of their own moms’ best friendship. Although that reasoning may seem a bit childish or even stupid, Elle didn’t even consider why she would want to go to Berkeley. She didn’t consider programs or any other significant aspects when it comes to choosing a college. But what’s even more confusing than that is Elle applied to Harvard just because Noah, her boyfriend, goes there. Who in their right mind would change their whole life plan just because of one person? On top of that, the person she wants to change her life course for is considered untrustworthy by Elle. That just makes no sense! 

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3. The whole cheating plot...Where do I even begin? Elle visits Noah at Harvard and finds an earring underneath her boyfriend’s bed, an earring that doesn’t belong to her. It actually belonged to one of Noah’s newfound Harvard friends, Chloe. Elle jumps to conclusions instead of just asking Noah about the find, which could have helped them avoid the major conflict of their relationship in the film. Holding on to what you think you found out is only going to make the situation worse. And the texts? They honestly didn’t even seem bad. It looked like just a casual conversation with a friend.

4. Is Noah Flynn a bad boyfriend? At the beginning, he shares his whole new college life with Elle. But as soon as he gets settled, he stops telling Elle what he’s doing or who he’s with. Granted, he shouldn’t have to. But, because Elle had expressed her wariness and concern about Noah hanging out with Chloe, he decides to hide his whereabouts which only makes him look more suspicious. 

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5. Moving onto Lee... He only seems to apologize to Rachel when there is a crowd watching to witness him being a “good” boyfriend trying to make things right. To be completely honest, if I was in high school and the guy I liked announced that he loved me over the school intercom, I would be humiliated. Beyond embarrassed. As a teenager, it could be a struggle to know what real love is or what relationships are worth it on top of being called out in front of the whole school! I would not be happy. 

6. Instead of telling Elle the truth, Lee lies about injuring his ankle so he can spend more time with Rachel and ditch Elle as his dance partner for the dance contest later in the movie. When Elle catches him walking normally, he says his reasoning is because, “Marco’s a better dancer than me and he was the only chance at you winning.” Not only is that the dumbest lie, but it’s also such a messed-up thing to do to your best friend. 

7. Again, Lee lets Rachel confront Elle with horribly mean words about her inability to butt out of her relationship with Lee. However, he doesn’t defend her nor does he tell Rachel the truth. He never told Elle how she felt and he let Rachel be cold and rude to Elle because he “didn’t want to hurt her feelings.” 

Knowing that this is supposed to be a rom-com helps with some of the missing or messed-up plot details. But in my opinion, I don’t think it’s enough to excuse the bad storyline or confusing clips shoved into this Netflix sequel.

 

Lena Zarate

Winona '22

Lena is in her third year at Winona state University, and she's majoring in social work and minoring in criminal justice and ethnic studies. She hopes to get her master’s degree in social work and hopes to work with at risk youth and juvenile delinquents. In her free time she enjoys watching Netflix, playing rugby, watching true crime, volunteering, and listening to music.
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