'The Kissing Booth 3' has almost no conflict, and that's honestly perfect - MrLiambi's blog

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Thursday, 12 August 2021

'The Kissing Booth 3' has almost no conflict, and that's honestly perfect

Honestly, it's a pretty great list.

Welcome to Thanks, I Love It, our series highlighting something onscreen we're obsessed with this week.


Great movies are built on great conflict. A hero fights to save the city; star-crossed lovers yearn to be together; the underdog team competes in the big game â€" that sort of thing.

Now, The Kissing Booth 3 isn't a great movie and it doesn't have a great conflict. In fact, it doesn't have much conflict at all. But it's precisely this sequel's lack of adversity that makes it the best in Netflix's rom-com trilogy, delivering a sun-soaked California dream that finally understands what this franchise does well while leaving its troublesome past behind. The result is a surprisingly strong argument against pushing plot when that's not what a sequel needs to be successful with its intended fans, and considerably more enjoyable to watch because of that smart choice.

In his third Kissing Booth outing, director Vince Marcello embraces the airy nothingness of author Beth Reekles' YA world with comfortable familiarity. Leading lady Elle (Joey King) returns with her best friend Lee (Joel Courtney) and her boyfriend Noah (Jacob Elordi) for their final summer before heading off to college, with their traditional soundtrack of Beach Boys and Top 40 in tow.

Though Elle is having trouble deciding between Berkeley and Harvard â€" consequently, choosing whether to be on the West Coast with Lee or in Boston with Noah â€" she's determined to have an amazing vacation with her friends and, over the next hour and 52 minutes, she does pretty much that. A childhood 'Beach Bucket List' guides Elle's journey, with standard summer activities like fishing and swimming appearing alongside more ambitious goals like organizing a flash mob and partaking in real-life Mario Kart.

The gang is all here!
The gang is all here! Credit: netflix

From the pop-backed party montages to the sweeping shots of the Golden Coast, the tenor and tone are unmistakably Kissing Booth, and the glittery theatrics are as loudly goofy as they were in the first two movies. But the toxic masculinity, ridiculous jealousy, and other nonsense that has plagued this franchise in the furtherance of past plots simply doesn't appear here.

Yes, Elle's prestigious education dilemma sometimes dampens the mood, and a smattering of B-stories offer occasional flares of drama; The Kissing Booth 2's romantic foils Marco (Taylor Zakhar Perez) and Chloe (Maisie Richardson-Sellers) do return for a few scenes. But for the most part, The Kissing Booth 3 is as tensionless as a beach towel, and not a whole lot happens as a result. Everyone kind of just hangs out in the sun. Whenever there is conflict, it resolves so quickly and with such uncharacteristic maturity that it's hard to remember what even happened.

Extended scenes of petty arguments are replaced by some thoughtful conversations but more often lots of smily silliness. So the charismatic cast carries this title as much as they did the others, but are given the time and material to do that more skillfully. Instead of forcing Elle, Noah, and Lee into yet another hyper-contrived fight about who wants to hang out with who more â€" if you're new to these films, that really is what they're all about â€" The Kissing Booth 3 lets its stars' enjoy their natural onscreen chemistry. When they're not tasked with selling a story that doesn't work, this cast has more than enough going for them to keep you engaged.

With ample room for their characters' most likable traits to shine through, the starring trio delivers effortless performances that make only half paying attention to this movie feel like enough in a good way. King and Courtney's high-energy dynamic once again creates an effervescent friendship you can root for, while King and Elordi deliver the most sincere romance the Kissing Booth has ever seen. If this movie has a "point," it's letting those charming relationships wash over you.

As the summer rolls on and Elle gets further into her soul-searching, it's her quiet inner conflict that carries us to and from The Kissing Booth 3's sunny sequences. That the franchise ends on a notably wiser sentiment that the problematic messaging of the original makes sense given this shift toward more emotionally intelligent character building. But that I stuck around even after the movie's conclusion to see the cast through the blooper-accompanied credits speaks to them alone.

Easing up on the conflict isn't enough to make The Kissing Booth 3 a great movie â€" again, that does take a truly great conflict â€" but it does make it a notably nicer watch. For a franchise with such a thorny history, that's the kind of happy ending worth getting behind.

The Kissing Booth 3 is now streaming on Netflix.



Source : http://feeds.mashable.com/~r/Mashable/~3/SAwOVUK97GE/the-kissing-booth-3

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