Netflix

A Castle for Christmas (2021)

A Castle for Christmas (2021)

Netflix

Director:

Mary Lambert

Writers:

Ally Carter

Kim Beyer-Johnson

Starring:

Brooke Shields

Cary Elwes

Blurb:

To escape a scandal, a bestselling author journeys to Scotland, where she falls in love with a castle – and faces off with the grumpy duke who owns it.

Review:

I was surprised how much I enjoyed A Castle for Christmas. I love these types of movies but so often you can tell the budget was nonexistent. Scenes get cut, makeup is horrible, the dialog is awkward, and set decorations are minimal. A Castle for Christmas probably had a higher budget than other Christmas romance movies, but I’m sure it wasn’t huge, and most went to the stars. Still, they used their budget wisely and it showed.

It’s hard to do a romance with an “older” couple. It can come often as overly sentimental and all about companionship. People of all ages fuck. Chemistry adds a LOT to a romance movie and Shields and Elwes had it.

A Castle for Christmas also had the addition of wish fulfillment. Shields was a successful author with a loving daughter, she befriended an entire village, and she bought a castle. Then she winds up with freaking Westley. You could not get much better than that. Christmas romance needs that in the story. While the world is burning around you and the holidays are stressing you out seeing someone on-screen live the life you’d like while also having to overcome “small” hurdles is its own kind of therapy.

Netflix has been delivering these holiday romance movies for a few years now and I hope they continue. I need them. I look forward to them. My only complaint is I want MORE.

4/5

The Harder They Fall (2021)

The Harder They Fall (2021)

Netflix Original

Director:

Jeymes Samuel

Writers:

Jeymes Samuel

Boaz Yakin

Starring:

Jonathan Majors

Idris Elba

Zazie Beetz

RJ Cyler

Edi Gathegi

Danielle Deadwyler

Regina King

LaKeith Stanfield

Delroy Lindo

Blurb:

When an outlaw discovers his enemy is being released from prison, he reunites his gang to seek revenge in this Western.

Review:

I’ve been looking forward to The Harder They Fall since I saw the trailer. It mostly delivered on my expectations, however, it dragged in some bits and slowed the pacing down. I would have liked it if the romance had been more hinted at instead of explored. I don’t particularly care about romance in a western because the genre is already filled with so much. The romance of the lone gunslinger coming in and saving the town. In this case, though, the gunslinger had a small group of friends, which still worked in my opinion. However, they didn’t save the town. I was surprised at that route and I’m not sure how I feel about it. Was the town too corrupt? It didn’t seem that way, so I’m not sure why that decision was made.

There were several tropes that were inverted and I liked that a lot. I also LOVED how they depicted the white town. It was hilarious. I was kind of bummed that the second friend ended up dying. You already knew the young one was going to, he was too cocky to live in that kind of world. I also did not like the reveal at the end, which was not needed at all. Bad guys in westerns don’t need motivation other than being bad.

I liked the ending (I love Regina King’s character) and I’m hoping that there’s a sequel that works on fixing the things I disliked. This is the kind of western I enjoy, one that’s not super artsy, though, The Harder They Fall did have its moments.

3.5/5

To All the Boys I’ve Loved: Always and Forever (2021)

To All the Boys: Always and Forever (2021)

Netflix Movie

Director:

Michael Fimognari

Writers:

Katie Lovejoy

Starring:

Lana Condor

Noah Centineo

Blurb:

Continuing the romantic life of the teenage girl and facing her good and hard times with her friends and family.

Thoughts:

I’m going to do thoughts instead of a review for Always and Forever. For me, there is a difference. I try to be more objective with a review. Not so much with just my thoughts.

Everyone in this movie is beautiful and perfect, inside and out, which was sweet. It’s the end of the trilogy, but it was more like a giant epilogue for the other movies, which was boring.

There is almost no conflict. Nothing new is really introduced, nothing that makes a huge impact at least. I guess you could argue that Peter’s relationship with his dad is new, but that literally takes place in the last twenty or so minutes of the movie. There’s the college selection, but you always knew that was coming. They’re in high school and wealthy. It was assumed they were going to college. The father gets married in the end, but he’d already started dating someone in the last movie, so you knew he’d moved on from Lara Jean’s mother.

If you’re a super-fan of the characters, then Always and Forever was made for you. Which, of course, you’re watching the third movie in a series, naturally you’re going to love the characters. What I’m saying is, there is nothing new here. So if that’s what you’re looking for, then you’re not getting it.

I didn’t expect it to go past high school, but I don’t get the same closure from finishing high school as I’ve gotten older. High school was never a be all end all for me. It was something I had to get through. So, I’m setting expectations.

What is it with the jocks now getting into Ivy League schools? This happened in Always and Forever and The Kissing Booth. While Peter has never seemed more than average intelligence, the Kissing Booth’s dude always came off as a little below average. Yet, there they are in Harvard and Stanford. I guess we’re no longer pretending you get into those schools on merit alone? The bad guys are no longer the ones that buy their way into the schools, it’s now the good guys too?

It’s possible I was in the wrong mood for Always and Forever. I wasn’t in any kind mood at all, so who knows. I love each of the actors in the movie, and I’m looking forward to more from them. I’m just not sure this movie needed to be made.

A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding (2018)

A-Christmas-Prince-2-The-Royal-Wedding-Review

A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding (2018)

NETFLIX

Director:

John Schultz

Starring:

Rose McIver

Ben Lamb

Alice Krige

Plot:

A year after helping Richard get to the throne, Amber is about to become his wife. But is she really made to be queen?

Review:

Holy shit I was excited to see this was coming out. I love when they take Christmas movies and continue on with the story after the normal happily ever after.

Amber, Rose McIver, is still blogging away while her prince, now king, Richard, Ben Lamb, rules his country. Young and ambitious nothing seems to be going as planned for the couple. This is the first test of their relationship and things don’t go as planned, both have their failings, but hopefully they’ve learned some lessons for the future.

Lots of returning characters, tons of pairings off, and a dorky Christmas tree. The romance was a little bit lacking this time around, but it was understandable considering the story that did play out. Still, it was missed and I hope any future movies play more into the romance of the couple and less into the supporting characters. Give them their own movies!

The Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding was a faithful sequel. It hit all the expected notes and was full of holiday cheer.

My Christmas wish is that this because a yearly series. Next year can be Royal Honeymoon, then Royal Heir, Royal Spare, etc.… If everyone was willing to do it I see no downside!

5/5

 

The Princess Switch (2018)

The Princess Switch

The Princess Switch (2018)

NETFLIX

Director:

Mike Rohl

Starring:

Vanessa Hudgens

Sam Palladio

Nick Sagar

Plot:

One week before Christmas, Margaret, the gorgeous Duchess of Montenaro, switches places with Stacy, a “commoner” from Chicago, who looks exactly like her. With the assistance of a magical Santa’s helper, Margaret falls in love with Stacy’s handsome co-worker, while Stacy falls in love with Margaret’s fiancé, the dashing Prince.

Review:

This is 2018s A Christmas Prince. The Princess Switch was a fun romance filled with all the awkwardness you’d expect from two adults switching places. At times I was unable to watch with my head buried in a blanket because it was too much for me to handle.

Christmas trope wise, we had a creepy old man that appeared, guiding people toward the happily ever after. We had a cute kid doing that she could to help things along as well. Gorgeous couples. A topless scene for a male lead, which honestly I’ve never considered a trope of Christmas movies, and I’m not sure how I feel about it happening so frequently in movies now, it feels like pandering. We also have a glorious new kingdom that is a bit too perfect to be real.

The couples were adorable, the prince ridiculously charming, the best friend perfect, it was all very sweet. Also, there was baking. I love baking.

The Princess Switch was definitely top tier when it comes to Holiday Romance movies, so I highly recommend if that’s what you’re looking for.

5/5

2019 -The Princess Switch + A Christmas Prince = Crossover???!!