‘P.S. I Still Love You,’ a Valentine’s Day classic

The sequel to the books that took the world by storm has proven to be a gem.

Theatrical Release poster [fair use]

The sequel to the books that took the world by storm has proven to be a gem.

Kate McElhinney, Staff Writer

As someone who watched “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” four times within the first week of its release in August of 2018 and has watched it at least 60 times since then, it would be an understatement to say I was thrilled when “To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You” was announced. Needless to say, my expectations were high and my excitement was through the roof. Such expectations were absolutely met, and I am extremely satisfied with the outcome of this movie.

Prior to watching “TATB: P.S. I Still Love You,” there were a few bits and pieces that I felt needed to be resolved. For starters, the character of John Ambrose McClaren was completely replaced in between movies. In the first film, McClaren (Jordan Burtchett) was played by your typical tall, skinny white boy with dreamy blue eyes. Although people were a bit unhappy with the change at first, the new John Ambrose, Jordan Fisher, perfectly portrayed the character’s bubbly, loving personality.

Another thing that was to be kept in mind while watching the film was its relativity to the book. Although I have read the series, it’s been a few years, so my knowledge of the correlation between the two isn’t exactly movie critic material. Nevertheless, I reached into the deepest corners of my memory to find the key differences between the book and the movie, but there weren’t many. A few scenes were added and a few were removed, but the overall plot of the movie very much resembled the book.

Speaking of the plot, “P.S. I Still Love You” was not much different from your typical quirky teen romance movie, but the depth of the characters and the intensity of the plot really sets it apart. The original “To All the Boys” ended in the springtime, but the sequel began in late January or early February, which left me a bit confused at first. The film follows the journey of Lara Jean Covey (Lana Condor) and Peter Kavinsky (Noah Centineo) as they pursue a real relationship with each other. Everything is going swimmingly until John Ambrose McClaren, one of the five recipients of Lara Jean’s love letters, writes a response to Lara Jean and later ends up working at a nursing home with her. In somewhat of a “Twilight” fashion, viewers are conflicted between team John and team Peter throughout the film.

Per usual, Netflix’s choice of actors was stellar. With the return of some of the original actors like Centineo and Condor and the addition of a few like Fisher, the acting was strong, and each role showcased well the talent of everyone on the cast.

The cinematography was quite honestly nothing special. The camera followed the actors around, making cuts when deemed necessary. Although there were a few unique shots, most of them were pretty basic and didn’t draw my attention.

The soundtrack of this film was incredibly fitting, filled with super upbeat songs about love and relationships. After watching the original “To All the Boys,” I was pumped to hear the soundtrack of this sequel, and I was not disappointed. From “About Love” by MARINA to an acoustic version of “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” the songs in the film brought a positive energy and matched the tone of the movie perfectly.

There are three books in the “To All the Boys” series, so a third movie is quite likely on the rise. The second movie left a few questions unanswered, including what will happen to Lara Jean during senior year as she applies to college. The next movie will likely be released in the summer of 2021, and viewers will be anxiously waiting for it.

As someone who spends her Friday nights watching romantic comedies with her friends, this film was right up my alley. It was a great sequel to the original “To All the Boys,” and its close proximity to the plot of the book was pleasantly surprising. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, this movie is bound to have you wishing for your own Peter Kavinsky.