I recently watched Netflix’s latest high school movie, The Half Of It, and I want to share what I learned about relationships and friendship from it. In Ellie Chu’s words: “Love is messy, horrible, selfish, and bold.”

Relationships Friendships
Credit: Half Of It

The story follows the complex relationship and friendships between three high schoolers. A football player, Paul Munsky played by Daniel Diemer gets the help of the school ghostwriter-for-hire, Ellie Chu played by Leah Lewis, to write a love letter to a popular kid, Aster Flores played by Alexxis Lemire. The goal is to start a relationship.

As a story, The Half Of It felt flat to me. It failed to deal with glaring issues in the lives of the teenagers involved. However, I also picked up on vital lessons about friendships and romantic relationships.

These lessons are about the things that you should do and should not do when starting a new relationship or friendship.

1) Don’t start a relationship or friendship based on a lie

Munsky’s friendship with Aster started with a lie and their relationship ended up falling apart. In his letters to her, he pretended to be someone else, starting the relationship deceitfully.

2) Romantic relationship or friendship bonds form with communication

For Ellie to write the letters for Munsky, she had to spend time with him and get to know him. They both ended up forming a great relationship that led to their supportive friendship.

3) Sacrifice for the relationship we have with our loved ones

The three teenagers had to sacrifice their dreams and what they love for their loved ones. They lived in a community they longed to leave until the events of their relationship and friendship took place and they had to take a leap of faith. 

We often sacrifice what we want for our friendships and relationships, but it is important to always make our dreams a priority so we don’t fall behind.

Even though I had lots of issues with this movie, it reminded me of some essential things about friendship and romantic relationships.