Double Feature: A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby (2019) & The Greatest Showman (2017)

Welcome to the next double feature! Half 2010s decade catch-up effort and half holidays viewings meshed together. I’m expecting that to be something of a trend for this month since I have a lot of movies to watch and don’t want to put the reviews on hold for too long in fear that I’ll just forget about what I watched in general. So here we are!

A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby (2019)

A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby

Director: John Schultz

Cast: Rose McIver, Ben Lamb, Alice Krige, Honor Kneafsey, Kevin Shen, Momo Yeung, Sarah Douglas, Theo Devaney, Richard Ashton, Crystal Yu, Tahirah Sharif

It’s Christmastime in Aldovia, and a royal baby is on the way. Amber and Richard host royals from a distant kingdom to renew a sacred truce, but when the treaty vanishes, peace is jeopardized and an ancient curse threatens their family. – IMDB

You can find my reviews of the first two movies below:

A Christmas Prince
A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding

Other than the first movie that was a rather fun little holiday romance story albeit all its formulaic tendencies, the follow-up last year was rather lackluster. It had some of those fun elements but felt like a lot of the chemistry in the first one fell apart. Third movie now and we’re talking about babies because that’s the obvious next step. I don’t have an issue with it going in this direction but rather, its a step into the whodunnit deal where they await the introduction of Penglia and even shows a map highlighting the ficitional universe that Netflix has created with mentions of Belgravia (aka The Princess Switch). Its very clever to pull it all together and I maintain that point however, the chemistry isn’t quite there. Everyone seems rather wooden and there’s a good deal of overacting.

It falls short but somehow comes up a little bit ahead of last year’s The Royal Wedding to me at least because it feels less about the romance and focuses on some fun elements, as improbably as it is for it to happen if a precious treaty had gone missing. There’s a ton of plot holes in this one but then, other than reviewers, I’m not exactly sure who goes into this one to just relax with a simple and uncomplicated movie is really looking for these things (as glaring as it all is).

Movies are to its audiences so unless you review these things for the holiday season, there is no reason to go into it if you believe that you dislike these films in the first place. That’s my warning for you. A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby is the third movie in its franchise so you know what is coming and it doesn’t pull any funny tricks and is as formulaic as you’d expect it to be. If you like these films, you’ll enjoy this one and if you don’t, then don’t watch it to save yourself the misery.

On a side note, I ended this movie and started thinking about where I can find that Christmas Tree game because that sounds like a fun party game perfect for Christmas.

The Greatest Showman (2017)

The Greatest Showman

Director: Michael Gracey

Cast: Hugh Jackson, Michelle Williams, Zac Efron, Zendaya, Rebecca Ferguson, Austyn Johnson, Cameron Seely, Keala Settle, Sam Humphrey, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Eric Anderson

Celebrates the birth of show business and tells of a visionary who rose from nothing to create a spectacle that became a worldwide sensation. – IMDB

Being a huge fan of musical, The Greatest Showman was one of the first movies to add to the catch-up roster for the 2010s decade. Its one that had a lot of hype and a soundtrack that is well-known even without the context of the film. There’s a lot of grandeur and big production scenes and splendour in its set.

The Greatest Showman is a biopic and perhaps because of that, it has the burden of giving Hugh Jackman’s role as P.T. Barnum a more ambitious turn of events that highlights his thirst of success and to make something of himself to not be looked down by the others around him and being able to immerse himself in the upper class society where he forgets the most basic reason that he does all this: for love and his wife and turns it into a more selfish ordeal. This type of success story is actually rather familiar and frequently scene whether its as a biopic or in fictional stories about finding the way and seeing what’s important so on so forth.

Deal is, put those things aside and The Greatest Showman is a wonderful musical that stays true to its genre because while it has its drama, it is a great big show with a lot of musical pieces that comes in frequently. The singing is done well and some of the set and choreography are wonderful to look at like Zendaya and Zac Efron’s scene together or the whole This Is Me or The Greatest Show. There is one that is particularly sweet with Hugh Jackman and Michelle Williams as they go through the years together which is a neat little way to move time forward quickly without having to add a lot of extra dialogue and content.

There’s a lot of technicalities that work in The Greatest Showman that makes it a fun musical to watch. For musical fans, it does fit the bill relatively well and its one that shows that a familiar story, even though its based on a real life story, with good execution of its elements can be very entertaining and engaging to watch.

 

What’s Up 2019: Week 49

Tranquil Dreams (50)

Welcome to Week 49! 2019 is moving so fast now and I have some big plans coming into play for 2020 as I’ve been doing some behind the scenes planning (where I will discuss further in the New Year’s post). However, this past week has been rather good with a good deal of everything going on..maybe except reading, but at least its moved forward…

Let’s check it out!

READING

love potions and other calamities

Currently reading: Love Potions and Other Calamities (32% done)

I know I know…reading is really taking a hit. I haven’t been really in the reading mood and it has nothing to do with this book because its actually quite entertaining and has a rather unique story and I wouldn’t expect anything less from Charlie Laidlaw whose played with some fun twists on ideas before. This should be finished by the end of the current week and review will go up right away after that. I have a lot of reading to catch up to so I’ll be getting back on track sooner rather than later..not to mention I still have a book to finish up that I started which is also a commitment.

PLAYING

rusty lake roots

  • Rusty Lake Roots
  • Rusty Lake Paradise

Next up: The Room Three

I finally wrapped up all the Rusty Lake games up to date. Their new game is supposed to be VR, I think so probably I won’t have a chance to check it out. Either way, Rusty Lake Roots was a mountain to climb with about 5 hours of gameplay as you played each character from start to end and then the little stories in between to progress. It had 33 levels altogether with some puzzles that were easy and it got a little more complicated by the end but it always had a relatively logical solution to. Rusty Lake Paradise is also a good game but where it falls short is that there are some puzzles which were just a shot in the dark and trial and error in some ways (or at least it felt that way) and that got a bit frustrating. Detailed reviews coming up over at Game Warp soon! I’m deciding my next game to play in advance now so that gaming becomes less of a neverending choice and something a little more planned out.

WATCHING

The Greatest Showman

  • A Cinderella Story: Christmas Wish (2019 Review)
  • Holiday in the Wild (2019 Review)
  • The Knight Before Christmas (2019, Review)
  • A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby (2019)
  • The Greatest Showman (2017)

So look, if I was going to pick a holiday film as standout for this week, it would be The Knight Before Christmas because that one is a ton of fun. However, no Netflix/holiday movie is going to beat out a musical and The Greatest Showman, albeit its very familiar plot has its unique elements of grand flair that musicals need especially with its cast of unique people and the start of show business and circus and whatnot and it has a great soundtrack.

BINGING

Put Your Head On My Shoulder

  • Put Your Head On My Shoulder (2019 rewatch)
  • The Fall (Season 1, 2013)

Currently binging: Who’s the Murderer 5, The Brightest Star in the Sky (rewatch), The Fall (Season 2)

TV has finally dropped to the backdrop now. The Brightest Star in the Sky is one that I’ve liked a lot earlier this year and it got added to play on Huace channel on YouTube so I’m watching that again now. In the effort to get those outstanding TV binges done,  I’m rewatching some of the shows that I’ve really liked so Put Your Head On My Shoulder got added to Netflix so I rewatched that one and the TV binge is about 80% done so it’ll be coming out soon (although no one really reads it and its more for my writing pleasure).

I’m trying to finish The Fall before it gets taken off Netflix but I don’t quite see myself getting through 10 more episodes before the 14th (or around then that its due to be removed). Right now, I’ve literally only just started Season 2, so we’ll see how far we go as the seasons are short, I’m trying to lump them together into one TV Binge post.

That’s it for What’s Up Week 49!
2019 is coming to a close in only a few weeks!

Have you been upping the holiday themed things?
What have you been reading/playing/watching/binging?