mo’s review published on Letterboxd:
this movie really is SO weird lol i'm sorry!!!!! i don't know why people are saying this doesn't have any cliche tropes or anything because it's rife with them...which is fine! it's just that a lot of them felt weird within the context of a movie in 2020 assumed to be set in present time. the biggest part of this was how the high school characters / groups were portrayed (ex: TRIP, aster's blonde friends, football team, THE ENGLISH TEACHER) and felt like they just came off a 90s/00s teen movie. ellie is the only one who i didn't feel this way about but i think that's because i KNOW a lot of people who were the bitter resentful intelligent girl in a small town who thinks she knows better than everyone because she reads when i was in high school. like, i get it. but like..."i never thought about the oppression of fitting in"???? really? LOL
i guess the (other) main problem i had with it is that the romance plot just did not hit home with me at all. if they had chose to focus more on the friendship between paul and ellie / familial relationships in general, i probably would have enjoyed it more. i wish there was less of a focus on WHAT IS LOVE AS AN ABSTRACT CONCEPT?!?!?!?!?! according to high schoolers and more of what it means to be loved and let yourself by loved OUTSIDE of a romantic context when you feel you're devoid of it in your life, if that makes sense. paul and ellie's relationship could be argued as a vehicle for the movie as it is now but there was something missing for me.
also there is a weird shift between the first and second half that honestly lost me completely lol. anyway other than those things it was a fine teen movie. i guess it's just not a movie that is necessarily for me.