Why did To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before Become an Instant smash hit?

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Every year, Hollywood releases its slew of movies to try and make as much money as possible. Some are instantly beloved, and expected to be beloved, like Black Panther or the next Avengers movie. But, it isn’t too often where Hollywood releases a movie and it becomes an instant smash hit, INSTANT. Well over the summer, Netflix released the hyped To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, and just like that, everyone was talking about it and everyone loved it. But why?


  1. The hype, it is EXTREMELY rare when a film becomes a classic with absolutely no hype; for every film, especially a smash hit, you need hype. Well, the film the book was based on was released in 2014, and almost immediately, the rights were bought to become a film. So Hollywood execs knew almost four years ago a film was in the making. With all the promise so quickly, why else did it get hype? The film industry is known to white-wash popular characters in adaptations for whatever reason, which is also known to get sharp backlash. To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before doesn’t do that, white-wash its leading lady. Because of this, many online celebrated that, which added more fuel to the fire, hype.
  2. The film itself. The film adaption of To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before did everything right, everything. First comes to where the film was even presented on, Netflix. Since it was distrubuted on Netflix instead of the traditional theatre, it was easier and more accessible to watch, over, and over as become common with binge culture today. Netflix capitalized on that, and hit it right releasing the film digitally. When it comes down to the movie, it’s a nice feel-good movie everyone enjoys. It doesn’t overdo the cliches, just a perfect sprinkle so it keeps it’s title of “rom-com”. Speaking of rom-coms, it was just that. Back in the 90s and 00s, rom-coms dominated the box office until the young adult genre killed it, and To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before brought back the nostalgic rom-com genre while evolutionazing it to today’s standards and society. Instead of inserting a few iPhones and over-using cliches, this film made jokes everyone today would get, especially teenagers, using “relatability” to its full advantage. In addition to all this, it didn’t offend anyone, it gave everyone a smile and a happy ending, all while staying true to the novel and the author. This film made you pay attention the whole time as you follow the main character, reminiscent of older classics like Clueless, Heathers, Mean Girls, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, and so on. The film truly did everything right.
  3. The media. Something studio execs may not have realized is the power of social media. In this day and age, films can go even bigger than a traditional media promotion run without doing a. Single. Thing. All you need is a good movie, and a movie goer will text their friends as soon as they finish, “hey, go watch this amazing movie….”. Even more than that, said movie goer will go on Twitter and tweet their followers how much they fell in love with Peter Kavinsky or Kitty. They tweet screenshots of the film’s beautiful cinematography, and boom, it goes viral. All those likes and retweets, funny memes, recommendations spreads to Instagram, Tumblr, Facebook, Pinterest, Reddit, even Youtube. The film becomes more than an instant hit, it becomes a viral sensation. Combine classic film promotion tactics and the power of social media, and you’ve got yourself a film classic beloved by millions. And you didn’t even do anything besides make a good movie, the viewers who enjoyed it did the rest.

In conclusion, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before was destined to become a classic hit film from the very beginning. If a novel’s rights get bought almost immediately after publication, it’s sure to become something. Add the power of Netflix’s widely used accessibility, social media and a relatable audience, this film walked it’s way right into success. Now, this film can seat itself right next to classics like Clueless and 13 Going on 30, as a classic rom-com.