William & Kate

Movie review by
Tracy Moore, Common Sense Media
William & Kate Movie Poster Image
Cheesy biopic of royal love story is superficial fun.
  • NR
  • 2011
  • 87 minutes

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Kids say

age 13+
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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Marrying for love; compromising for those you love; patience; good things come to those who wait.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Characters are positive, well-intentioned, good people, though some are portrayed as shallow and judgmental. Most characters are affluent 20-somethings trying to enjoy themselves and their wealth, shown without a great deal of complexity.

Violence

News footage of Princess Diana's mangled car after the crash; a group of hunters fires a few shots at birds.

Sex

Some kissing between William and Kate; sneaking into each other's bedrooms late at night; crotch shots of Kate as she exits cars by paparazzi; a joke about dropping drawers and mooning; William and Kate shown in bed with each other, clothed; Kate does a fashion show in see-through lingerie, bra and panties visible; men discuss a woman being hot; a guy explains why another guy needs a wingman, to address the number of girls who want to "shag" him.

Language

"Bitch," "shag."

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

College students drink enthusiastically in numerous scenes at bars, clubs, their flats, and parties. They pop champagne, have a glass of wine in the bathtub, and sometimes refer to "drinking themselves silly." No one is shown excessively inebriated or ill. A guy is passed out shirtless on a couch after a party.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that William & Kate is a Lifetime biopic about the courtship of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. It features some light kissing, cutaways that presume sex, enthusiastic college drinking, and some real news footage of Princess Diana's mangled car after the crash. It takes the future royal couple through their days at university, living together in a flat, later courtship, and eventual marriage. It's not a particularly stellar piece of cinematic work, but it's an amusing, if cheesy, guess at the trajectory of the couple's path to the altar. 

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What's the story?

Prince William (Nico Evers-Swindell) and Catherine Middleton (Camilla Luddington) are a married royal couple, but it wasn't always so. See how they met at university, became friends as flatmates in London, and navigated their relationship under the scrutiny of the press as they made their way to the altar.

Is it any good?

There should be enough here to please fans of the royal couple. The love story between Catherine Middleton and Prince William is often referred to as a fairy tale, but WILLIAM & KATE puts them constantly in each other's lives by such ordinary circumstance that it's hard to see it as very difficult, as if Middleton already had the money and poise to fit right into Prince William's royal life. Still, she's a regular person, and he's a royal, so there's plenty that fascinates in imagining how this relationship got off the ground. Though it's hard to believe some of the details of this love affair -- a particularly bad karaoke performance seems dubious, and Kate being so instantly and intuitively welcomed by Prince Charles does, too -- this is a fun, vicarious, cheesy look at the two's eight-year courtship.

It does raise some interesting questions about how a supposedly ordinary (although, let's be clear, still rich) woman could wed a prince so easily and posits that she played a long game well, waiting it out and enduring a lot of scrutiny to get there. But in the end it stays in the shallow end, and unfortunately we don't get much insight into their real lives or thoughts (how could we?), nor do we have any better sense of the real obstacles the relationship might've faced from the royal family. Instead, think of it as a very unimaginative take on what may have happened but perhaps the closest take we could get outside the tabloids. There's frequent college-appropriate drinking and a little kissing and innuendo, as well as the famous lingerie show, but nothing too steamy for teens. That said, it's probably too boring for younger kids.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the depiction of the couple's relationship. Do you think the movie seems realistic? What works about it, and what doesn't?

  • How does the film portray the media scrutiny that is part of royal life? Do you think it's accurate?

  • How is class treated in the film? Do you think people from different class backgrounds can have a happy marriage? Were William and Kate's lives really so different?

Movie details

Themes & Topics

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