- BOTTOM LINE
- Trashy Fun
What is the Story about?
Elle (Joey King) and Lee (Joel Courtney) are born on the same day and time and grow together since childhood. Theirs is the thickest of friendships. What happens when Elle is slowly drawn towards Noah (Jacob Elordi), the elder brother of Lee is the basic story of the film?
How is Jacob Elordi’s performance?
Jacob Elordi is technically not the hero of the movie but gets a “hero” like part. He is the swashbuckling, handsome playboy whom the girls get weak on the knees. Elordi fits the role perfectly, physically, and appears douche at times like the character arc demands. He has a drool-worthy bod from a female perspective, but when it comes to acting, he comes across as bland. It is a typical part of teen sappy dramas, so he gets a pass like everyone else.
Direction By ?
Vince Marcello has written and directed the movie The Kissing Booth. It is based on a novel but, there is nothing ‘novel’ in the story or the setting or the dramatic arcs as far as the movie is concerned. They are all clichés.
There are all sorts of misogyny at work with the writing referencing it directly some times. The whole movie feels like a high school soft-porn fantasy with the primary threads of a regular teenage drama neatly woven into the narrative to give it the feel of a film.
However, despite the whole clichés and complaints what works is the sincerity of the actors and the trashy fun The Kissing Booth provides in the narrative consistently all the way. There is no deviation, and a neat emotional, full circle for Elle is achieved at the end. It is highly predictable, but it goes about its way without giving two hoots about it.
In the end, The Kissing Booth offers enough for a particular segment who don’t mind the cliché and are all up for voyeuristic pleasure. Even for them, it would be a tiring and boring watch at best due to the sheer predictability on offer.
Joey King and others?
Joey King is the hero of the movie. It is her film from the start until the end. Elle’s (Joey King) character arc and the maturity she develops at the end in the mainstay of The Kissing Booth. She has done her part well and is the major attraction from all angles. Her inhibited act is fiery and charming at the same time. Joel Courtney is decent at the start but gets better towards the end. No wonder it’s only then that we recognise his presence as an actor. Otherwise, he is easily forgettable. There are a few more characters, but none have anything substantial to do.
Music and other departments?
The music by Patrick Kirst is suitable for the terrain. It gives the right push, and the other usage of songs too is well timed. The cinematography by Anastas N Michos is fine. He provides the expected palette for a teen romance that is very commonplace. The editing is neat. The writing is par for course.
Did I enjoy it?
Yes, few parts
Will you recommend it?
Yes but with huge reservations
The Kissing Booth Review by Siddartha Toleti