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‘Red, White and Royal Blue’ movie review: Little sizzle, mostly fizzle


Express News Service

When British Prince Henry (Nicholas Galitzine) and the US President’s (Uma Thurman) son Alexander (Taylor Zakhar Perez) first meet in Red, White and Royal Blue (RWRB), they describe each other as the world’s “most irritating” and “rudest” people, respectively. Twenty minutes and some entertaining witty banter later, the hateful duo gets attracted to each other. The film is interesting up until here, following which a sense of predictability washes over the proceedings, causing the saccharine romance to stop well short of becoming a great queer love story.

RWRB, based on Casey McQuiston’s eponymous novel, is about Henry and Alex falling in love with each other, but the backdrop of re-election in America and the customs of the British throne also form a significant part of the narrative. While Alex wants to cause positive change in the world, Henry wants to run away from the royal burden. The ideas are regal and lofty, but they just don’t surprise you enough. 
There are, however, some impressive little touches to look out for. For one, Thurman’s Ellen Claremont, a utopian woman POTUS, is inspiring in a non-preachy way.

Then, the unconventional emotional quotient exhibited by Alex, who is also the more physically imposing one of the protagonists, was a much-needed portrayal of masculinity. It is equally nice to see Henry being forced to boldly face his familial evils. Brownie points to the makers for creating such subversions that are catching up with the times and nudging the spectrum of representation.  

Although the transition of their relationship from physical attraction into an emotional bond is executed neatly, the film ultimately suffers on account of its conventional tropes. Be it the dramatic walkaways or the ‘face your fear to get your love back’ idea, none of it manages to evoke surprise. Like love, this film too needs a massive leap of faith for the audience to truly enjoy it.

Red, White and Royal Blue 
Director: Matthew Lopez
Genre: Romance
Platform: Amazon Prime Video
Language: English

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