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A Christmas in Royal Fashion

Movie review by
Kat Halstead, Common Sense Media
A Christmas in Royal Fashion Movie Poster Image
Festive romance isn't original but promotes kindness.
  • NR
  • 2018
  • 90 minutes

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We think this movie stands out for:

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

The movie is intended to entertain, not educate.

Positive Messages

Themes of kindness, compassion, empathy, helping others, telling the truth, admitting mistakes. Characters learn to look beyond their own happiness and ambition to do the right thing. Character fails to correct mistaken identity in order to further herself. Importance of good looks is also a prominent and problematic theme.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The only clearly positive role model is Amy, a seriously ill child who's selfless, kind. Adult characters act in their own interests to varying degrees -- but, inspired by Amy, do show character growth. At first Prince Patrick is portrayed as stereotypical rich playboy, but learns to use his money and influence to help others. Kristin, initially willing to do what it takes to succeed, learns why it's important to own her mistakes. Melanie starts out as "heartless career woman" but learns there's more to life than work. Other gender stereotypes: female character baking cookies and saying she’ll make someone a great wife one day.

Violence & Scariness

Scenes in a children's hospital involving a seriously ill 9-year-old. Reference to deceased elderly parent.

Sexy Stuff

Flirting, slow dance. A peck on the lips under the mistletoe turns into a longer kiss. Characters are referred to as being beautiful.

Language
Consumerism

The movie centers around a PR firm, so there's some talk of fictional brands -- particularly within the fashion industry.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Wine at dinner. Champagne reception, but characters are rarely seen actually drinking alcohol.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that A Christmas in Royal Fashion is a holiday love story involving a prince and mistaken identity. Though romance is at its core, the movie's central relationship is very mild. There are no overtly sexual references, and both characters are kind and respectful toward each other. Main character Kristin (Cindy Busby) is likable; she breaks some rules -- such as taking her boss's clothes without her permission -- but her behavior is ultimately punished. There's no violence or strong language, though scenes in a children's hospital involving a seriously ill 9-year-old may upset some kids, as may an early mention of the prince's mother being dead. Significant emphasis is placed on looks, with storylines including fashion models and both Kristin and a young girl being described as beautiful on multiple occasions. Still, the overall themes are of kindness, compassion, and honesty, and the characters see the error of their ways before the closing credits.

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What's the story?

In A CHRISTMAS IN ROYAL FASHION, PR assistant Kristin (Cindy Busby) longs to prove herself to her boss, Melanie (Meredith Thomas). When Melanie is called out of town before the annual Charity Christmas Fashion Festival, Kristin is left to liaise with the ambassador from the kingdom of Edgemoor, which is co-sponsoring the event. But then Prince Patrick of Edgemoor (Diarmaid Murtagh) turns up in the ambassador's place, and Kristin is accidentally mistaken for Melanie. She decides to go along with the lie in order to impress the prince and succeed in running the show.

Is it any good?

The movie is far from original, the dialogue is full of exposition, and the acting a little hit and miss. But, at its heart, A Christmas in Royal Fashion is well-meaning, with plenty of positive messages. Busby is particularly likable as Kristin, portraying her as an ambitious but sweet young woman who finds herself getting sucked further and further into her deception. The story of a prince falling for someone outside of his social class echoes Cinderella, albeit with a modern spin. Juliana Sada's performance as Amy, a young girl in the children's hospital who shows wisdom and empathy that inspires the adults around her, is also reminiscent of Tiny Tim from A Christmas Carol.

The settings aren't particularly elaborate, but the film does have a solidly festive feel with its fairy tale narrative, plenty of Christmas trees, recognizably festive music, twinkling, and sleigh bell sound effects. Show a little forgiveness yourself, and it'll fill you with Christmas cheer.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the different characters in A Christmas in Royal Fashion. Did they feel stereotypical? Would you consider any of the characters role models? What character strengths do they show?

  • How was the prince portrayed at the start of the film? Did that change by the end? What inspired him to change? How does he show compassion?

  • Why does Kristin pretend to be somebody else? What other reasons might people do that in real life? Do you think it's important to be yourself?

  • Discuss the true meaning of Christmas. What message does the movie send about the meaning of Christmas? What do you think Christmas is about?

Movie details

Character Strengths

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Themes & Topics

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