Sweet rom-coms to stream if you’re obsessed with To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
Here are some titles to help you nurse your To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before hangover.
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Netflix’s original movie To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before was the talk of the Internet when it came out. After its August 2018 release, the teen rom-com spawned its very own meme and boosted yoghurt sales. The movie is based on the first book in the Lara Jean YA trilogy by author Jenny Han, so Netflix decided it has enough source material to kick off a franchise. Stars Lana Condor and Noah Centineo turned into overnight sensations, so they were down to reprise their roles in two sequels. The first, To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, arrived on Netflix in 2020 while the second, To All the Boys: Always and Forever, is coming out just in time for Valentine's Day 2021.
If you’ve been living under a rock recently, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before centres on Lara Jean, a quiet girl who finds her high school existence turned upside down when a bunch of secret love letters she’s written to her crushes are mysteriously sent out. One of them was meant for her sister’s ex-boyfriend, Josh. When Josh confronts her, Lara Jean starts fake-dating one of the school’s popular kids, Peter, to avoid a lengthy conversation about her feelings. The rest is now history.
To cure your thirst for even more cute rom-coms, we thought it would be nice to suggest a few similar titles. All these movies feature delightful teens falling in love and such, so they’re perfect if you fancy To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. Even better, they’re all available to stream in Australia.
1. Everything, Everything (2017)
Based on Nicola Yoon’s YA novel of the same name, Everything, Everything follows a young girl, Maddy, who can’t leave her house due to a severe illness that makes her allergic to almost everything. However, when a handsome boy moves next door, her life changes for the better. The two start to communicate and, before you know it, Maddy will be taking risks she wouldn’t have previously dreamed of.
The movie is a classic girl coming of age with the help of a charismatic boy tale. As a result, it’s a gentle and engrossing flick perfect for a quiet evening at home. The two leads are great and the film’s whimsy is enough to win over even the most cynical of viewers. Plus, it’s not too overly sweet, it has a banging soundtrack and Maddy has amazing chemistry with the boy next door. What more could you wish for?
Sorry, we've found no streaming options for this title.
2. Five Feet Apart (2019)
Starring Haley Lu Richardson and Cole Sprouse, Five Feet Apart was inspired by a real-life couple. The story follows Stella, a teenager who spends most of her time in the hospital as she suffers from cystic fibrosis. Consequently, her life is governed by routines and boundaries. All of that changes when she meets Will, a charming young boy who suffers from the same illness. Restrictions dictate that they must maintain a safe distance between them, but the two become more and more tempted to break the rules.
The movie has plenty of emotional moments, so we advise you keep a box of tissues handy. Additionally, both leads are charming and deliver great performances, making Five Feet Apart the perfect tear-jerker to keep you company when you want to feel all the feels.
Five Feet Apart is available to stream on Netflix.
3. The Kissing Booth (2018)
Netflix has been releasing several feel-good rom-coms in recent years and this one is no exception. The Kissing Booth centres on Elle, a high school student who ends up unexpectedly locking lips with her secret crush, Noah, at the Spring Carnival. The problem? Noah, the ultimate bad boy, also happens to be her best friend’s brother and is totally off limits. As the two realise they’re falling in love, Elle needs to figure out how to handle the tricky situation.
The Kissing Booth is no masterpiece – it’s clumsy and predictable, but that doesn’t make it any less watchable. Quite the contrary. It’s the perfect title to relax with when you’re looking for something light and fun. The appealing cast is just a welcome bonus. A sequel is currently available to stream also, with a third movie arriving in 2021.
4. Easy A (2010)
Emma Stone is a delight in romance flicks – Crazy, Stupid, Love and La La Land stand testament to that. Before starring in these big Hollywood productions, though, Stone had her breakthrough role in Easy A, a captivating comedy about a girl who becomes embroiled in a comical sex scandal. The movie follows Olive, who attempts to help a friend and ends up having to deal with false rumours that she is sexually promiscuous.
The movie is witty and has a lot of heart, benefiting from a sharp script and a great performance by Stone. It’s genuinely funny, with Stanley Tucci and Patricia Clarkson stealing the show as Olive’s open-minded parents. In short, Easy A is not just another teen rom-com. It’s a modern classic.
Easy A is available to stream on Netflix.
Sorry, we've found no streaming options for this title.
5. The Fault in Our Stars (2014)
This one might make you cry, so proceed with caution. Based on the popular John Green novel of the same name, The Fault in Our Stars stars Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort as two teens diagnosed with cancer who fall for each other and try to make the most of their time together. This includes a trip to Amsterdam that will end up being the experience of a lifetime for them both.
Sweet and heartbreaking, the movie is well-acted, with both Woodley and Elgort inhabiting their characters perfectly. It's also a successful mix of melodrama and shenanigans. Stream it when you need a reminder that life is short.
Need more rom-coms to snuggle up with? You'll find plenty more with these free streaming trials
6. Clueless (1995)
If you’re a teen rom-com fan, you’re probably already familiar with this classic title. If not, now’s the perfect time to fall in love with Cher, the popular high school girl with a heart of gold. A modern update of Jane Austen’s Emma, Clueless takes place in Beverly Hills and pokes fun at both the teen rom-com genre and the lives of ultra-rich teenagers.
The movie follows Cher as she discovers that she likes to do good deeds and decides to take a geek girl under her wing to help her become more popular. At the same time, she’s looking for the perfect boyfriend, whom she ends up finding in the most unexpected place. Sweet and funny, Clueless is very quotable and endlessly charming. Don’t think you’ll be able to resist.
7. The Princess Diaries (2001)
The Princess Diaries follows shy teenager Mia, who suddenly learns that she’s a real-life princess. As she is heir apparent to the crown of Genovia, she’s now supposed to learn what her new role entails. Consequently, her grandmother, Queen Clarisse Renaldi, starts to give her "princess lessons". The movie is just as silly and engrossing as the premise suggests, benefiting from a loveable Anne Hathaway in the lead role and boasting a great supporting performance from Julie Andrews.
At its core a makeover movie, The Princess Diaries is terrific fun for viewers of all ages, from idealistic tweens obsessed with Meghan Markle to adults looking to unwind for a little bit. It also provides some evergreen life lessons like the importance of taking chances and such. Plus, it has all the ingredients of a fairy tale, so it successfully stands the test of time. The sequel is also a charmer in case you’re looking for a double-feature kind of night.
8. Stargirl (2020)
A charming movie about young love, Stargirl is based on the novel of the same name by Jerry Spinelli. The story revolves around a high school boy who falls for the new girl, the free-spirited Stargirl. As the two grow closer, Stargirl teaches him and the entire town a memorable lesson about how important it is to stay true to who you really are.
If you like teen rom-coms with a side of music, this one should go on your watchlist ASAP. A heartfelt movie that touches on acceptance, it's like chicken soup for the soul.
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9. The Half of It (2020)
A winning entry in the growing Netflix catalogue of rom-coms, The Half of It revolves around a shy girl who agrees to help a jock win over a girl. Too bad she's harbouring feelings for the girl herself.
The Half of It is heartwarming and witty, with an intriguing premise and likeable characters you will root for in no time. The movie isn't solely about romance – it's about friendship, acceptance, growing up and so much more.
10. High School Musical (2006)
The movie that sparked a trilogy and gave us the wonder that is Zac Efron, High School Musical is basically a modern adaptation of Romeo and Juliet. If follows two rival high school students, Troy and Gabriella, who shock the school when they team up to try out for the lead parts in the high school musical.
High School Musical might be cheesy, but it’s also a lot of fun, mainly thanks to lively performances by Efron and Vanessa Hudgens. The musical numbers are delightful and the light tone of the flick ensures a highly enjoyable watching experience, especially if you set your expectations accordingly. You won’t be swept off your feet, but your mood will improve dramatically.
11. Alex Strangelove (2018)
Another loveable Netflix Original, Alex Strangelove centres on a high school student who plans to lose his virginity to his long-time girlfriend. However, things get more complicated when Alex meets a charming gay kid from the other side of town and starts to question his sexuality. Thus begins a rollercoaster adventure of love and sex, as Alex tries to navigate his newfound feelings.
The movie hits a lot of familiar beats but never fails to charm, delivering an absorbing story with a powerful message. It also features some funny scenes and has a lot of heart, so it’s perfect if you’re suffering from To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before withdrawal.
12. Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List (2015)
Starring Victoria Justice and Pierson Fode, Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List follows two besties, Naomi and Ely. Ely isn't exactly into girls, so they have a "no kiss list" where they add boys forbidden to them both. However, things get tricky when they fall for the same guy and have to decide how to navigate their friendship under this new set of circumstances.
The movie wins bonus points for focusing on friendship, along with romance, which makes it an unexpected treat. It also benefits from some strong performances from the two leads. Although mildly predictable, Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List brings the goods as far as rom-coms are concerned, even if the two main characters are no longer in high school. You can’t go wrong with adding it to your Netflix queue.
13. The Sun Is Also a Star (2019)
The Sun Is Also a Star features Yara Shahidi and Charles Melton as two teens who fall in love, while one of their families faces deportation. Their instant love story sparks over one magical day amid the fervour and flurry of New York City.
Does this movie require viewers to suspend disbelief? Sure. Does that make it any less charming? We vote no. While the plot may strain credulity, The Sun Is Also a Star is a delightful watch for anyone craving a sweet and timely rom-com.
14. The Perfect Date (2019)
Looking for an extra dose of Noah Centineo in your life? You can’t go wrong with The Perfect Date, a Netflix original revolving around a high school student who creates an app to offer his services as a fake date to make money for college. When he develops feelings for someone, his plans take a turn. The movie also stars Laura Marano and Camila Mendes.
Incurable romantics will immediately fall for the cute story, while everyone else will likely enjoy the chemistry between Centineo and pretty much any girl he shares the screen with. All in all, the movie is a very good time.
15. 10 Things I Hate about You (1999)
A beloved high school rom-com that perfectly stands the test of time, 10 Things I Hate about You benefits from a clever script that makes the story feel fresh even all these years later. Add some tremendous performances into the mix and there's no wonder the movie is considered a classic of the genre.
Meet Kat, a smart but abrasive high school student who doesn't attract a lot of boys due to her attitude. The same can't be said about her younger sister Bianca, who is eager to start dating. Unfortunately for her, their father decides Bianca can't date until Kat does. So when a boy at school falls for Bianca, he pays bad boy Patrick to woo Kat. Will he pull it off? Tune in to find out.
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