A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this animated film is part of a series of movies about Odette, a princess who was magically transformed into a swan, and Derek, the handsome prince who came to her aid. In this installment, the happy couple visits Derek's home during the holidays, where they help others learn the true meaning of Christmas. Unfortunately, the evil wizard Rothbart is plotting to ruin the day. There are some fight sequences that may be intense for the youngest viewers, but otherwise the movie is fine family fare.
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What's the story?
Princess Odette and Prince Derek are visiting his home for the holidays, hoping for a memorable holiday. Unfortunately, they arrive to find that some people have lost sight of the true meaning of Christmas, and are competing to stage the biggest pageant and throw the biggest party, rather than just enjoy time with friends and family. Even worse, the evil wizard Rothbart has followed them and is determined to destroy the holiday and wreak vengeance upon the happy couple. Can Derek and Odette foil his evil plan?
Is it any good?
Part of the long-running Swan Princess video series, this movie brings back all the familiar characters, including the couple's animal friends, but lacks the charm of the original tale. This installment tries to merge a standard-ish sequel, featuring another dastardly plot from the couple's nemesis Rothbart, with a wholesome find-the-real-meaning-of-Christmas lesson. The result feels forced, with plot elements bolted together, including some uninspired musical numbers and a few plot twists that seem to come from nowhere. (Just how does the ghostly Rothbart manage to come up with the exact magical spell to restore his body?)
Young viewers who have become attached to the tales of Derek and Odette may enjoy seeing this holiday adventure. Otherwise, the film isn’t especially memorable or appealing.
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