While we’ve all been obsessing over Noah Centineo and the ever dreamy story line of Netflix’s newest teen rom-com, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, there’s one aspect of the movie that viewers have been overlooking: the overtly feminist tone the movie leaves in its wake.
The very plot of the movie offers a very feminist perspective on high school life and teen romance. The three main characters of the film are Lara Jean Covey, and her two sisters, Kitty and Margo. The girls are left with only their father to raise them, as their mother passed away earlier in their lives.
Throughout the course of the movie, it is shown how the three sisters are constantly helping each other out- whether it’s braiding each other’s hair or helping deal with the emotional turmoil that comes with being a teenager, the Covey girls always had each other’s backs. While something like this might seem insignificant, in today’s society where girls are constantly tearing eachother down and harassing one another, it was refreshing to see girl reinforcement.
In addition, Lara Jean stood her ground throughout the entirety of the movie and never let her morals or principles be sacrificed for a boy. For example, when she believed that Peter Kavinsky was not being honest with her about his interactions with Gen, and when she felt he wasn’t being respectful, she ended things with him.
While these actions might simply seem like easy, basic choices, too many movies and television shows feature female leads that make poor and self damaging decisions in order to maintain their relationships. Showing a main character with such strong principals gives younger girls role models to look up to, and teaches adolescents to never settle for a relationship they’re unhappy in.
Also, something that might not be known by most viewers is that the director of the film was Susan Johnson, who is a woman. Having female directors has been a recent push in Hollywood and production companies, as a report from 2016-2017 revealed that only 28% of creators, writers, directors, and executive producers were women. Seeing To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before not only exhibit female empowerment, but practice it is dedication that is sadly abnormal in most films and shows.
The female empowerment and encouragement present in To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before is the dose of feminism that our movies needed. Especially because the film had such a young audience demographic, the lessons presented throughout the movie will be taught to the generation that needs it the most.