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February 29, 2024

Why The Kissing Booth isn’t worth watching

By CLAIRE BEAVER | September 26, 2019

This week I shall be roasting one of Netflix’s original movies The Kissing Booth. If you haven’t seen it, consider yourself a lucky one.

So, this movie is just absolutely wild. It’s like two 10 year olds tried to write a fanfiction and just let their inhibitions run wild — actually, it’s exactly like that because this movie is based on a fanfiction that Beth Reekles started writing at 15.

Reekles started uploading her fanfiction in chapters on Wattpad — essentially a blogging/fanfiction website — and seven years later it became a Netflix Original. Is it insane that a 15-year-old’s smut got turned into a movie? Yes. Am I insanely jealous of this girl’s unprecedented success? Also yes.

First, yes, the main actress Joey King is Ramona from Ramona and Beezus, as I know you were all wondering. To be honest, her acting has not improved since then. I understand this is one of those “this is supposed to be so bad that you like it” movies, but it’s just so bad that it’s, well, bad.

Essentially the movie is about a girl Elle and a guy Lee, who are best friends because they were born in the same hospital on the same day (totally not a cliché) and who made a set of rules about how they will maintain their best-friendship. 

The biggest one is “don’t date each other’s siblings,” which, of course, our protagonist can’t do considering Lee’s older brother Noah is a hot, mean jock, aka the perfect type.

Noah’s hair is the true star of the film. Half the time he is blinded by this hair, and the other half he’s running his hands through it. Greasy, much? 

Lee also has floppy hair, so I suppose this trait runs in the family. 

The whole movie revolves around Elle and Noah falling in love, which is done in the most predictable (and problematic) way I have ever seen — and I have seen my fair share of rom-coms.

Noah is seen actively trying to control Elle’s life, telling everyone at school they can’t date her and attacking people on her behalf though she tells him to stop. And it’s romanticized!

The biggest problem I have with this movie is that Elle gets assaulted at school, hence Noah attacking the dude, and she gets the same punishment as the guy who assaulted her. To make this even worse, this is played off as a joke. This movie came out in 2018! Elle says to the principal, I shit you not, “Dude touched my lady bump.” I’m sorry, what?

Putting that horrible incident aside, Lee is also trying to control her throughout the movie. What is the big deal about Elle dating his brother, aside from the fact he’s a huge douche?

The whole time I was waiting for it to come out that Lee was actually in love with Elle, but he wasn’t! He just wanted to control her because he could! The casual misogyny in the movie in unbelievable.

When we see Noah and Elle first kiss at the kissing booth at the school’s carnival, it’s not even cute. We just pan around them and watch a kiss that I’d probably give a 4.5/10. Lame. Despite his horrible behavior, their seemingly two-foot height difference and their mediocre kiss, Noah and Elle begin their romance.

The way this movie treats sex is also psychotic. Elle and Noah have sex under the Hollywood sign. 1) This is trespassing and straight up illegal. 2) She watches him sleep and it is so creepy. 3) The first time they have sex is in public, and they just stay naked out there?! What!!!!!

Also, when Elle and Noah hook-up in his bed and Elle needs to hide because his mom is coming into the room, she crawls under the bed and sees lube and tissues. I GAGGED. I think that was supposed to be a joke but, like, yikes.

Something else I am still not over is Molly Ringwald agreeing to be in this. Why? Was Riverdale not enough for you? Are you still itching to do terrible acting in teen media? John Hughes is rolling in his grave (if he is dead, I don’t actually know).

If this article hasn’t been spicy enough for you, I’m about to get real petty. I’m dying to know: Who edited this film? The color is so saturated that every actor’s lips look like they were colored in with a hot pink crayon. 

Also, there’s too much smirking. Smirking is not acting! Also, I would not be shocked if I found out this screenplay was typed up in comic sans.

Overall, this movie is garbage. If I had to rate this movie, I simply wouldn’t. Also, the second one comes out in January. They’re really gonna give it another go. Sickening. 

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