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Netflix’s The Christmas Prince is Blase

What can you gift to any pre-teen romantic in your family? Netflix’s “The Christmas Prince.”

Christmas Prince
Photo Courtesy of Netflix

It has a white Christmas, a doughy-eyed leading lady, a tall prince who lives in a castle, and 80 percent less drama than any reality tv show. This film is very much age appropriate and yet has the audacity to be 92 minutes long. I only sat through it for you.

The premise of the story centers around Amber (played by iZombie’s Rose McIver), a New York City tabloid copy editor, who gets sent to cover the successor to the Aldovian throne, playboy Prince Richard (Ben Lamb). I don’t know where Aldovia is, but the first two pages of Google says it only exist in young adult fiction and according to the movie the people there speak British English.

Amber arrives in Aldovia for the press conference but Prince Richard isn’t in attendance and the whole thing gets called off. With a hunger to prove her journalism chops, Amber manages to sneak back into the castle by going in through a side entrance. Crime must not exist in Aldovia because nobody stops her until after she is in the building. And when someone does, they mistake her for the American tutor due in two weeks. All this is happening right after a press conference, by the way.

The tutor is for the prince’s little sister who has spina bifida. The girl, Princess Emily (Honor Kneafsey), ends up liking Amber because she treats her as a normal kid as opposed to the royalty that she is or the limitation that she has. Princess Emily even keeps Amber’s secret after finding out that she is a journalist so she has leverage to get out of actual tutoring. This is a twist I didn’t see coming because I was expecting the bitter yet witty sibling to initiate all the drama.

The romantic set-up is cliché and convenient. Amber broke up with her ex over a year ago and Prince Richard’s been single for a year, as well. The two begin to fall for each other after a flirtatious snowball fight followed by a dangerous rescue.

In the background, though, the princes’ spotlight-loving ex and his jealousy ridden cousin are off to the side planning a scheme to get rid of Amber and ruin the prince’s happiness. Their chance opens wide open when they catch Amber slippin’. Amber must have forgotten that she was sleuthing under cover because she leaves her purse and sensitive information that relates to the legitimacy of Prince Richard’s succession sitting out in the open.

As any fairytale romance would end, the ratchet ex and jealous cousin out Amber, Richard and the Queen (Alice Krige) in order to steal the throne. I won’t tell you anymore; I don’t want to spoil too much of the movie. However, if you’ve watched your fair share of fairy tale romances, you already know how it’s going to end.

The best parts of this movie involve 60-something Alice Krige effortlessly pulling off scenes.

I was a bit surprised to see her in a such a film that is cookie cutter compared to her previous work in movies like “Silent Hill” and “Thor: The Dark World.” Nevertheless, Krige was a treat.

Despite some of my sarcasm, this film is what speaks to the fairytale fantasies of christmas lovers and romantics. It focuses on all that’s good with a slight shade towards people who encompass the worst human character flaws.

I give this film a thumbs down on Netflix but 5 out of 10 stars for PopBreak.

Asia Martin
Asia Martin
Writer-at-large. Crushing hard on this era of TV📺


  1. ALDOVIA??????? Is not exist ALDOVIA, The castle where the filming took place is in Romania and is called Castel Peles. I do not know why they did not mention the name of the country.

    • thank you for sharing the filming location and you asked a good question. I don’t know why either, but i know it is common for fairytales to include made-up places based on real cities.

  2. We were there a few years back and met the prince and princess. There was a movie company filming on the grounds at that time, and they said that the funds from that (and our tour) went towards an orphanage they support.

  3. I’m not sure why the author did not like this movie. Perhaps she was deprived of holiday joy as a child.
    This movie is heartwarming and entertaining. Do not allow her shallow review to dissuade you from watching this Christmas movie.

    • To be honest with you, any European that watches this movie is shocked about how fantastically unreal al this seems and sounds. Especially that they let the people of a country with a Slavic name speak British English is making viewers very uncomfortable and Europeans permanently ask themselves wtf this should demonstrate us. I mean, and I am sorry to say that, but just clueless Americans that never been to Europe and had a F in Geography could imagine this to be realistic.

  4. Yes, the castle is in Romania, it is named : Peles Castle. They use our “national tresures” but they can’t specify the country : Romania.

  5. Movies/TV almost often change the name of the location for the story, especially a fantasy story. There are many reasons for this, including legal, practical, location set in the script, etc. In this case, it is a fairy tale and so even the country is imaginary. It stands in for what our imaginations conjure for a place with magic and romance where a “regular girl” could meet and marry a prince. They could have used any castle like the ones in Bavaria, or even Biltmore Castle in North Carolina. Should I get upset that my home states “treasures” are used yet they make believe the movie was shot in Europe? Countries don’t want their culture or geography misrepresented and a fictional story might often do just that, even if not in an unfavorable way.

    Note that many TV dramas that deal with terrorists and “bad guys” often make up the name of a country as to not insult the people of a particular country or its government and to not reinforce negative stereotypes. “Sangala” from “24” and “Naruba” from “Designated Survivor” come to mind. Also notice brand names of many items use standard Hollywood names, “Morley cigarettes”, “Heisler Beer”, and “Oceanic Airlines”. I worked in LA and had to deal with licensing, product placement and locations as a producer and director. Hope that gives a little insight into the film habit creating fictional product and place names. And, I think Romania is a beautiful country with wonderful people. I have a special connection to Romania.

  6. I don’t have anything against Americans, but hey, don’t mess with my country. You freaking film the scenes in my Romania and dare to not only refuse to promote it as a real locatio , but you invent a fake name for it. Shame on you. And the castle is called Peles, Sinaia, and back in the 1870-1900 when it was build, it used to be the 1st castle in Europe that had electricity, central heating an elevator.

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