Friday, February 4, 2022

The Royal Treatment (2022)


Streaming Service: Netflix
Movie Name/Year: The Royal Treatment (2022)
Genre: Comedy, Family, Romance
Length:  96 minutes
Rating: TV-PG
Production/Distribution: Focus Features International, Netflix
Director: Rick Jacobson
Writer: Holly Hester
Actors: Abby Howells, Aislinn Furlong, Amanda Billing, An Xin Chang, Cameron Rhodes, Chelsie Preston-Crayford, Elizabeth Hawthorne, Grace Bentley-Tsibuah, Ivan Stojanov, Ivie Kupeng, Jacque Drew, James Gaylyn, Jay Simon, Jen Van Epps, Julie Edwards, Kube Jones-Neill, Laura Marano, Matthew E. Morgan, Mena Massoud, Paul Norell, Peter Chin, Phoenix Connolly, Siale Tunoka, Sonia Gray, Talia Lesser, Taylor Barrett, Teuila Blakely, Theanne Bulatao
IMDb Blurb: New York hairdresser Izzy seizes the chance to work at the wedding of a charming prince, but when sparks between them fly, will love or duty prevail?

Cat’s Point of View:
The Royal Treatment didn’t appear on my Top 20 Movies to Look Out For in January 2022 list, but it was by the narrowest of margins. In hindsight, I’m somewhat wishing I’d dropped one of the animated sequels to list it, instead. One of the two at the end of my list rose to the occasion, while the other did not. I’m not going down that particular rabbit hole today, however.
What I am going to do is express my frustration that critics seem to be hellbent on tearing down perfectly good movies just because they weren’t designed to be earth-shaking or world-changing bits of enlightened cinema. Seriously, people. There is a place for sugary romance in the world. The Royal Treatment wasn’t even the most saccharine out there. It wasn’t even half as sappy as it could have been.

The Royal Treatment might not have the most substance or have the most groundbreaking plot – we’ve heard this story before, after all. What it does have, however, is spirit. It doesn’t matter that we’ve seen the story before because this version spins it again effortlessly so that you don’t mind hearing this new iteration.  This is a modern tale that gives emphasis to self-reliance and basic human dignity. It reinforces the important and powerful message that if you want to see a change in the world, you have to be the one that makes change happen.
I also have a lot of respect for some of the choices made with the story that elevated it above your typical royal romance tale – alas, to avoid spoilers I cannot share those specifics. I hate teasing like that – but it is, what it is.

What I can share is my giddy reaction at the little thread of information that gets dropped in The Royal Treatment. There is a clear binding factor to the world that Netflix romance movies have in common – and an unexpected addition. There is a mention of Aldovia and Genovia as other countries during dialogue. Aldovia is the kingdom from the A Christmas Prince (2017) movies, and Genovia is the realm from The Princess Diaries (2001) franchise. By the same token, the kingdom of Belgravia of The Princess Switch (2018) films is already known to be connected; so, while not mentioned in The Royal Treatment, we know that it is still ‘in the neighborhood’ of the others. The Diaries movies aren’t Netflix originals, so they had to have pulled some strings to make that happen – but I’m here for it.
I really enjoyed the cast. Mena Massoud (Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan, Run This Town, Reprisal) and Laura Marano (Austin & Ally, Lady Bird, Saving Zoƫ) had good chemistry both with each other and with their supporting cast. I think the butler character, Walter, played by Cameron Rhodes (Housebound, Deathgasm, In Dark Places) really stole the show.

There was even a small part for the former mayor of the town in New Zealand where they filmed. Speaking of which, the production team took good advantage of the scenery to give that fairytale and far-away vibe without completely taking us to Middle Earth.
With February as the month of Valentine’s Day and the distinction of being the 2nd month of 2022, this is even a more notable month for couples. The Royal Treatment is a cute movie for a date, or even family viewing. It’s familiar enough that you won’t get upset if there are distractions, but fresh enough not to be boring.
While it’s possible I might not remember The Royal Treatment years from now, I have no qualms in giving it a solid recommendation. 

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 27%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 38%
Metascore – 36%
Metacritic User Score – None
IMDB Score – 5.2/10
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating – 3/5
P.S. – There are some additional scenes as animations during the end credits. Following credits, there is a link provided by Netflix for more bonus content.

Also, if you'd like to see how some of these romance movie kingdoms are connected, PopSugar has an infographic in their article here.
Movie Trailer:

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