The Kissing Booth 3(Netflix)
Starring Joey King, Joel Courtney, Jacob Elordi
Rating: ** ½
You know what? I quite enjoyed the third and final part of Netflix’s silly but savvy Kissing Both series, probably because I knew there wasn’t going to be any more films in the series.
No. just kidding.I think it’s more to do with the fact that the three protagonists have ….ummm…I wouldn’t say evolved, but yes,grown up quite a bit since we last met them.
Lee (Joel Courtney) is still Elle (Joey King)’s best friend. Lee and Noah(Jacob Elrodi) are still lusting after one another…in a manner of speaking only. In reality, there is no sex in this Booth. Not much kissing either.
Director Vince Marcello keeps the proceedings amiable and sanitized. These youngsters pushing into adulthood, tempting their teens into self indulgence are pretty much sorted in their head.
Plus it helps that Joey King plays not just a young adult struggling with college preferences and a new girlfriend for her father who is anything but the archetypal Wicked Stepmother.
She plays a real young woman struggling to know if she must do what her boyfriend expects her to be.
In fact some of the most whistle-worthy moments find Lee’s stepmother-to-be promising not to step into Lee’s mother’s precious shoes.
The narrative leaves no swoon unturned, assisting Elle in finding True Love. Having failed to do so at the end, we are left looking at a vast empty but interesting space ahead for Elle.
No one comes out a loser here. The charm of the Kissing Booth series is that it takes no sides and yet has room in its heart for everyone.
Not to put too fine a point on it. But Kissing Booth is a very good looking film. This time much of the charming drama unfolds in a beautiful beach house owned by Lee and Noah’s mother played by veteran Molly Ringwald who once was a tangy teenager in Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club looking for the same things that the young protagonists in the Phone Booth are.
But the most beautiful sight in The Phone Booth 3 is Maisi Richardon Sellers who plays Chloe, Noah’s special friend who by the end of the film, convinces Elle she is no threat to Elle.
So all right. These young people are not into environmental toxicity and gender rights. But their concerns are genuine, at least to them.
Just how much of their heart problems will affect you will depend entirely on how cynical you are about Mills & Boon love, and booth kisses.