‘Dear David’ is a Love Letter to Growing Up

A Truly Relatable Coming Of Age


“Dear David” accurately portrays the awkwardness of growing up.
Photo Credit: Netflix

Kathryn Peterson, Activities Director

Wattpad, Archive of Our Own and Tumblr — with the rise of the internet has come the rise of fanfiction. These fan made stories are accessible by anyone for anyone to read, whether it is about a favorite book, movie, or even real life. “Dear David” is about one such writer who authored a fantasy world based on her dreams.

“Dear David” revolves around the interconnected lives of three young and aspiring students. There is Laras (Shenina Cinnamon), a straight ‘A’ student, her crush David (Emir Mahira), a soccer player on her school’s team, Laras’ ex-best friend Dilla (Caitlyn North Lewis), a bullied outcast. Unable to freely express her feelings, Laras uses her writing skills to anonymously release her built-up feelings, specifically toward her crush David. She writes fan fiction about him, but after failing to log out of her account at school, her writing is discovered. These stories are leaked, which push Laras, David, and Dilla together in a chaotic turn of events.

This movie, while somewhat cliché, is able to create a relatable sense of realism. It has real character growth where we see Laras grow from insecure and repressed to happy and confident. The problems presented, like that of building confidence and discovering sexuality, are ones that most teens go through.

Additionally, there are plenty of awkward moments in the story, meticulously representing the awkwardness of being a teenager. It was akin to me looking back on my past experiences and cringing at my own moments that “Dead David” resembled. 

On the other hand, there is a bit of stiffness in the acting. The worst chemistry is often between David and the other characters, like Dilla. It got better as the movie went on, but it was still noticeable. A few scenes feel a little forced, but they are not enough to detract from the overall message of the movie. 

Similarly, the cinematography and score is a little amateur, which isn’t a problem, but there is definitely room for improvement. The music sounded a little generic with the only stand-out song being “King and Lionheart” by Of Monsters and Men, which plays at the conclusion of the movie. The cinematography wasn’t really anything to talk about for most of the movie. However, I really enjoyed the camerawork of the fan fiction recreations. These scenes have captivating lighting and costume designs that aid the average filming. 

“Dear David” is a relatable and heartwarming rom-com — definitely a worthwhile watch. The characters, while imperfect as people, represent the awkwardness and confusion of being a teenager. This movie is able to capture the feeling of being a teenager much better than a lot of big Netflix movies, so if you are looking for a new teen rom-com to watch “Dear David” might just be the movie for you.