2.5/10 With Valentine’s Day on the horizon, I figured after having reviewed the “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” trilogy last February that it was time for another popular, romantic trilogy from Netflix. This year I selected “The Kissing Booth” trilogy hoping for a fun set of movies to get me in the romantic mood. While a couple aspects worked, the opening of this trilogy is off to a horrible start. Whenever I think I’ve seen the most unrealistic portrayal of high school yet, Netflix comes along to say, “Hold my underage beer from a red solo cup”. In all fairness, this isn’t the MOST unrealistic portrayal of high school I’ve ever seen in a movie but it is definitely up there. The opening of the movie is a lightning speed exposition dump that feels out of place when compared to the rest of the movie. The script is extremely predictable (you can pretty much tell what happens from the trailer) and cliché, including a group of hot, popular girls who are essentially “the plastics” from “Mean Girls”. Despite taking place at a large school, only the main and supporting characters seem to exist as even prom is geared towards the main characters, as if no one else exists at the school. The main characters all look like models with the exception of the couple supporting characters who are ugly for comedic purposes (laugh at the ugly kids, nice moral lesson from Netflix). PG-13 films generally are allowed the use of one F word and while this is the streaming equivalent since it is rated TV-14, this movie has multiple uses of the F word, which felt a little inappropriate for a movie aimed at teen girls. Whereas “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” is aimed at the same demographic and abides by the PG-13/TV-14 unspoken rules, this feels like it should be viewed by older audiences than who it is marketed towards. The movie isn’t funny at all and even worse, characters laugh out loud so loudly and over the top at unfunny moments that it feels like a laugh track from a 90s sitcom within the movie. The score is cheesy and forgettable and everything just feels extremely unrealistic and silly. As for what worked, the pacing moves along quickly, the movie is entertaining and half of the soundtrack works well (mad props for the inclusion of “Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)”. Despite a little overacting during a couple of scenes, Joey King is a likeable and charismatic leading lady and fun to watch. The two male leads are fine but they could be replaced with any other nameless, young hunk and you wouldn’t notice. In the end, the horrendous script full of clichés, unrealistic portrayals of everything and some woke PC nonsense thrown in because Netflix is always pushing an agenda makes this a movie to avoid this Valentine’s Day if you’re looking for something new to watch. Let’s hope the rest of this trilogy takes a step up since this kissing booth should be shut down.

#ClassicLeeTrained / #TheElleWord / #AFlynnFlynnSituation / #TheJoeyKingOfComedy / #TheKingOfTeens / #TheMomentOfBooth

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