The Movie Guru: ‘Red, White & Royal Blue’ a sweet, sexy delight

The Movie Guru: ‘Red, White & Royal Blue’ a sweet, sexy delight

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The Movie Guru: ‘Red, White & Royal Blue’ a sweet, sexy delight
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‘Red, White & Royal Blue’ is now streaming on Prime Video.
Prime Video/Courtesy photo

Good romance movies are hard to find these days. Good book adaptation movies are even harder.

Finding both in the same movie? A minor miracle.

Luckily for all of us, “Red, White & Royal Blue” manages to pull off that very miracle. An adaptation of the 2019 hit novel, the new movie is a wonderful charmer that will delight both fans of the book and those who have never even heard of it. The story is sweet and just the right amount of sexy, the leads are adorable and have amazing chemistry, and it actually has some stuff to say beyond the romance. If you’ve been looking for a new movie to fall in love with, then “Red, White & Royal Blue” is for you.



Alex Claremont-Diaz, the President’s son, can’t stand Prince Henry, youngest grandson of the King of England. When an incident leaves them covered in cake at a royal wedding, however, they have to fake a friendship in order to repair international relations. When that friendship turns genuine, then into something considerably more serious, will their relationship outlast the combined strain of the upcoming election and the entire British monarchy?

Though the plot sounds very Harlequin on the surface, the story takes the situation wonderfully seriously. There is an incredible amount of pressure on both these young men because of the lives they lead, and there are a lot more factors at play here than just their happiness. In addition, the movie touches on some important points about politics, responsibility and hope that are incredibly relevant to the world in general right now.

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Even with all that, the movie still manages to be quite funny. There are some great moments of physical comedy, including the cake moment that really kicks the plot off, and the dialogue is as zippy as an old black-and-white romance. Special recognition goes to Sarah Shahi, who has a killer way with a line delivery and may in fact be the funniest person in the movie.

What really makes it all work, though, are the two leads. Taylor Zakhar Perez is fantastic as Alex, capturing both his party-boy charm and his earnest desire to help people with equal skill. He can be a bit oblivious at times, but when he throws his whole heart into something you can’t help but root for him every step of the way.

Nicholas Galitzine may have an even tougher job as Henry, but he pulls it off beautifully. There are a several key moments in the movie where Henry’s inner conflict and heartbreak are communicated almost entirely by Galitzine’s face, and he nails it every time. Not once does the audience ever question how much Henry’s choices are killing him, even when Alex sometimes does.

Fans of the book will note that the movie condenses and alters some of the original plot, an essential part of any book-to-movie conversion. Unlike most adaptations, however, the “Red, White & Royal Blue” shows a deep, clear love of the book during every moment of its screen time. Some of the most-loved scenes are captured beautifully, and a lot of little references are pulled straight from the book’s pages.

By the end of the movie, you’ll love the story and characters just as much.

Grade: Four stars

Jenniffer Wardell is an award-winning movie critic and member of the Denver Film Critics Society. Find her on Twitter at @wardellwriter or drop her a line at [email protected]



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The Movie Guru: ‘Red, White & Royal Blue’ a sweet, sexy delight

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