- Netflix’s “The Kissing Booth 3” is the latest installment in the cringey rom-com film series.
- Like the first two movies, it’s full of clichés, manipulative relationships, and underage drinking.
- Warning: This slideshow contains spoilers for “The Kissing Booth 3.”
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Given that they’ve not been able to go more than a few months without breaking up in their already fairly short relationship, it seems like a bold step to bring up so casually.
To top it all off, first-year Harvard students aren’t even allowed to live off-campus.
Elle received her acceptance letters really late, but she still shouldn’t purposefully ignore calls from the Berkeley and Harvard admissions offices when they’re just trying to secure her spot.
When Elle accidentally answers a call from Berkeley, she even mentions extending her decision deadline again, showing that she already failed to answer them in time.
In real life, refusing to accept an admissions offer on time could void it. And dragging out the process makes it harder for the schools to take other applicants who actually want to go there off the waitlist.
This makes absolutely no sense, especially since their living there only adds to the mess.
Since Mrs. Flynn is a Realtor, she’s presumably dealing with all the details of the sale herself, so it’s unclear why she would want to make her job harder.
Additionally, the Flynn boys are known for throwing parties, and they waste absolutely no time doing so their first night in the house.
Lee is actually mad at Elle for breaking this rule when she initially decides to go to Harvard instead.
This is only the first of many fights the pair has throughout the movie that makes it clear they care more about following rules they made when they were 7 than actually being supportive of each other.
Although it resolves the issue momentarily — until Lee switches tactics and changes the number on the sign instead — it would definitely cause problems later on.
They don’t know at this point that the future buyer is planning on knocking the house down. If someone bought the house, they probably wouldn’t be too happy having the sign stuck in their front lawn or ripping up the grass to get it out.
Elle, Rachel, and Lee are all presumably 17 or 18 since they just graduated high school, and Noah is only one year older than them. In the US, you must be 21 to legally consume alcohol.
Since they’re all underage, it’s unclear where they’re getting the alcohol they seem to have such easy access to.
You’d expect for there to be beer and red cups littered across the party scenes, but they also casually have sangria at the Flynns’ mansion and pop Champagne with dinner at the beach house. Noah even drinks beer in public when he’s playing pool with Chloe.
Plus, when their parents are at the Fourth of July party, they don’t even seem to care about or notice all the underage drinking happening around them.
Rather than accept that this isn’t happening since they’re going to different colleges, they decide they want to find and rent an apartment for a single weekend just so they can cross it off the list.
This makes no sense, as no one would realistically lease an apartment to two teens who want to live there for two days.
After Linda spills a drink all over Elle’s top, Elle doesn’t even really give her the chance to introduce herself before she judges her.
Although it’s understandable that Elle’s not over her mom’s death and not ready for there to be someone else in her dad’s life, it doesn’t give her an excuse to be rude. In the next scene, she even complains to Chloe about how “annoying” Linda is despite the fact that she met her for less than five minutes.
This strange first interaction also didn’t seem to add anything to the story. It was just a chance to show Elle in a wet shirt.
The idea itself is cute in theory — even with the cringey costumes they wear — but in a movie full of too-long scenes, this one was lengthy and needlessly violent.
The real-life version of the game’s powerups consists of throwing things at other drivers, who then swerve off the track.
This is already dangerous, but when Noah gets more aggressive about beating Marco, they start purposefully slamming into each other and creating more hazards.
He calls Elle naive for thinking Marco just wants to be friends with her. He also yells at her for inviting Marco and letting him in on the Mario Kart costumes even though Elle asked Noah to be Wario, not Marco.
Noah’s insults during the fight are quite cruel, and the entire situation is worsened by the fact that Elle is the one who apologizes to Noah after everything.
It’s sweet that they’re trying to cram in as much time together as possible, but Lee usually seems to be in the way. Elle’s boss even stops Lee from sweeping at one point and directly tells him he doesn’t work there and shouldn’t do that.
Despite this, Lee can be seen wearing the restaurant’s apron and even making food in the restaurant’s kitchen in later scenes with zero explanation.
Noah knows that Elle and Lee have a detailed schedule for checking off their bucket list items, but instead of checking in with his brother before planning the surprise, he immediately gets angry with Elle when she tells him she can’t stay because she already has plans with Lee.
When Elle gets to the beach house and sees the meal Noah made for them, she seems grateful for the gesture and apologetic about having to leave, but Noah is rude to her about not dropping everything to spend the night with him.
It makes sense that he’s upset because it’s clear that the house and the memories it holds are really important to him, but he mainly takes this out on Noah and Elle, who had no part in the decision.
Lee refusing to let Noah paint and constantly messing with the “For Sale” sign is extremely immature.
He’s also rude to Elle when he sees that she’s tidying up the house, even though keeping it clean was one of the main stipulations of them staying there in the first place and probably would’ve had to happen even if they weren’t selling the house.
What’s worse is she continues to drink and swallow the milk after checking the carton and seeing that it’s expired instead of just spitting it out.
We know from her internal monologue that she’s trying to save face in front of Linda, who just offered to help out with things like grocery shopping around the house, and her bitterness is just as gross as drinking rotten milk.
Although it’s clear that he’s trying to be the bigger person, the “grand” gesture is soured a bit by the fact that he’s whiny about dancing with Elle when it was his idea in the first place.
It’s clear that Noah would rather play out every rom-com trope than actually talk through his problems with Elle and strengthen their relationship.
Lee just assumes they’ll both decide to skip orientation to spend more time together without discussing what Rachel’s plans were for moving across the country to Rhode Island.
Not only is the assumption both controlling and rude, but also it could create academic issues for them because freshmen orientations are usually mandatory.
When he shows her his plan for the month of August, his orientation is marked as starting on the 20th, but hers doesn’t start until the 28th.
She probably could’ve made the concert work if Lee was willing to drive down from Berkeley for the night.
Noah, who’s understandably still upset that the two kissed while he and Elle were dating, never wants to see him again. But Elle seems to want a friendship with Marco and expects Noah to be comfortable having him around.
Since they don’t actually say these things to each other, they end up in big fights that eventually end their relationship altogether.
In typical teenage-daughter-verse-dad’s-new-girlfriend style, Elle tells Linda that she’s forcing herself into their lives and that she doesn’t belong.
The entire scene is frustrating to watch given that Elle should be old enough to know how to treat people better even if she’s going through an emotional rough patch. It’s especially uncomfortable because Linda has been so nice and understanding the whole movie.
Anytime they go up there, there’s no one else around and they’re casually able to sit right under the letters.
In reality, it’s illegal to get that close to the sign, and it’s blocked off by protective fences, security cameras, and law enforcement.
Although it’s made clear that Elle’s family doesn’t have as much money as the Flynns, she grew up in a nice, spacious house in LA. She also never had to get a job until this summer, and in the previous movie, was given a car by her dad.
Sure, her family doesn’t live in a mansion with an in-ground pool, but she grew up in pretty similar circumstances to Lee for her to be calling him spoiled.
The two people whose family actually owns the house don’t want to interact with her, so it feels awkward and selfish for Elle to stay there instead of just going back home — which doesn’t appear to be far away given how often she’s gone back already.
The conversation is clearly meant to be a sweet resolution to their relationship, but it’s infuriating to hear Marco attempt to base his life plans around Elle.
The two never dated, and outside of their ill-timed kiss, Elle was pretty clear that she was never going to be with him. Yet he still wanted to plan his life around her.
This was one of the more problematic moments in the film series, especially since Tuppen and Elle both received the same punishment for the situation.
In the third movie, while Elle is saying goodbye to all of her high-school friends at a party, she runs up and slaps Tuppen’s rear. The two laugh it off while completely ignoring how harmful it is to make light of harassment.
Rather than acknowledge that she made the choice to lie to Lee, Elle blames him and says that she had to lie to him to avoid making him upset, which is what happened anyway.
Elle does this throughout most of her arguments in the movie. She yells at the person confronting her without apologizing or listening to what the other person has to say.
But Lee’s eventual response that she should just come to Berkeley with him now since she broke up with Noah is equally cringey. Luckily, at this point, Elle realizes she had to stop making all of her decisions based on other people.
When packing up the last of her things at the beach house, Elle relives her childhood memories with Lee, and viewers see them run around the house at various ages.
If the movie had spent more time focusing on the beach-house memories and nostalgia, maybe this montage would’ve seemed sweet. But the whole plot was just fight after fight between Elle, Noah, and Lee, so it was hard to get into the emotional moment.
This then continued in the scene where Elle says goodbye to Lee. As he’s driving away to college, younger versions of Elle and Lee pop up beside them in a bizarrely unsettling way.
Although it isn’t completely unrealistic that she would be able to shut down the deal before signing the contract, she is a Realtor, so this late-stage back-out probably wouldn’t look very good on her.
There also could be some pretty serious financial and legal consequences for backing out of an agreed-upon sale, especially considering she was selling to a development company rather than an individual family.
Although it ends up being a pretty insignificant part of the plot for how important the game was in the previous two movies, the boardwalk arcade gets rid of the game in the third film.
After they make up from their fight where Elle called Lee spoiled, Lee surprises Elle by throwing money at their friendship and getting her the Dance Dance Mania machine.
The Flynns are rich, so Lee can evidently afford to shell out thousands of dollars on an arcade game for a gift. But if the arcade is getting rid of the machine, it probably isn’t in pristine condition, and Elle would have to put a lot of money into keeping it running.
Elle is also not planning on being at her dad’s house much longer since she’s going off to college in the spring. It’s not like she could easily take the machine with her, so it would likely become her dad’s problem in a few months.
But despite being super passionate about this life decision, she didn’t seem to do much preparation for the interview.
When one of the interviewers asks her to pitch a few ideas, she stammers and nearly refuses to answer the perfectly reasonable question. She then gets up and almost walks out the door before, thankfully, turning around and pitching an idea for a video-game fantasy league.
It was embarrassing how unprepared she was for what should’ve been an expected question, but it’s probably not all that surprising considering she went to her Harvard interview hungover in the second movie.
Elle and Lee are still best friends, Lee and Rachel got back together and are engaged, and a responsible, suit-clad Noah strolls into the carnival.
The time jump was jarring, especially since it didn’t really reveal much growth in the characters. It felt like it was only included to show Lee and Rachel back together and that there are still sparks between Elle and Noah.
If the main plot had just prioritized conflict resolution over clichés, it could’ve ended the series on a happy note without using this epilogue to justify it.
The reference was pretty forcefully shoved into the last minutes of the film, seemingly just so Elle could say her “and it all started with …” line in her final voice-over.
The movie was already almost two full hours long, and this entire scene just unnecessarily added to that.