“I wish you could tell me what to do.”
Lara Jean is crying. Lying in her bed, the iconic blue wall behind her, she’s not her usual upbeat self. She isn’t fantasizing about her crushes. Rather, she’s being crushed by her reality. She likes two boys, and she doesn’t know what to do. So, she’s talking to her mom, staring at the family picture beside her bed.
“For Lara Jean, she loves her family so much, but I think that there’s a time in a young girl’s life where they just wish that they could talk to an older female,” actress Lana Condor tells EW, sitting down to talk on the Vancouver set of To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You. “She doesn’t really have that in her life, because her mom passed away when she was little. Margot [her older sister] is really far away, and she’s experience all these emotions while trying to navigate high school. That can be difficult.”
The scene encompasses much of what the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before sequel is about: the reality of love. After the first movie saw Lara Jean fall for Peter Kavinsky (Noah Centineo), the second will see the two teens try their hand at a real relationship. “Their chemistry has evolved,” Condor says. “It’s more mature. And they are actually able to have real conversations.”
As Lara Jean and Peter get to know each other better, the audience will get to know them, too. “The first movie was about love letters and fake relationships, and in this one you really get to know more,” Condor says. “We show that Peter’s flawed, and Lara Jean is flawed.” And one of Lara Jean’s flaws rests in her inability to decide what — or who — she wants.
When John Ambrose McClaren (Jordan Fisher) re-enters the picture, Lara Jean has to face what she what once felt for her middle school crush. “They’re true friends,” Condor says of Lara and John. “Their friendship is also a very deep love. Because you can love your friend very much, you get confused because you’re like, ‘Oh man, do I love him or do I love him as a friend?’ It’s very confusing.”
Condor knows that, going into the second film, much of the audience is rooting for Lara Jean and Peter. And it makes sense. But as she puts it, “I think that when people see the movie, they’re going to be shocked because it’s very difficult. Johnny Ambrose is awesome.”
To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You hits Netflix on Wednesday, Feb. 12.