Usually I don’t see the new seasonal movies that air on Hallmark channel until the following year when – and if – they release to DVD. This year, A Princess for Christmas was released in the U.K. and Canada. Because of this, it was my one “guilty pleasure” buy.
A Princess for Christmas (2011) Hallmark Review
Plucky and determined, Jules Daly (McGrath) isn’t about to let a little thing like losing her job affect Christmas. Since her sister and brother-in-law died the year prior, Jules has been trying her best to make a new home for her niece and nephew who she now looks on as her own. But Milo (Travis Turner) is a teenager who doesn’t want his aunt to assert a parental authority in any part of his life while young Maddie is a precocious seven-year-old.
In the aftermath of losing her job, a proper English butler (Miles Richardson) shows up on Jules doorstep. With him is an invitation to Castlebury Hall, the place the children’s grandfather (Roger More) calls home. With reluctance, Jules agrees to the arrangements, and off the trio go to England to spend Christmas with dukes and duchesses, and even a prince in the form of the duke’s son, Ashton (Sam Heughan).
Confession time: I absolutely adore this movie. Despite its fairytale premise, to be honest, the movie starts out a bit rocky. The director seems to employ awkward filming technique, and the camera shots don’t seem to compliment the actors. Once this passes (probably before fifteen minutes have passed), the viewers can settle in for an adorable, sweet little movie. The “adventure” is a lot of fun also. At its heart, it’s a story about uncertainty, and the hope of Christmas blessings.
The acting also compliments the story. Katie holds her own against veteran Roger Moore (part of the James Bond fame) although on occasion, the slightest hint of her accent slips into her American dialogue. She and Sam share a cute chemistry (if cute chemistry is a thing).
TV MOVIE REVIEW | Once Upon a Holiday (2015) – A Romantic FairytaleSee #SamHeughan (before #Outlander) in the Sweet [#Hallmark] Romance ‘A Princess for Christmas’ (2011) Click To Tweet
If there are any real faults or clichés, this is at the fault of the script which can sometimes take its talent for granted. Nevertheless this is a wonderful film, all warm and fuzzy as it finds just the right moods of festiveness, and yet, captures an emphasis on family and its importance.
Production crews found pretty sets (like the castle), and the camera captures gorgeous scenery. There is a pretty ball room scene, and I was pleasantly surprised that the movie moved away from a few of the trivial expectations I had of it. If you like British productions or happy-go-lucky romances, check into this one. I thought the ending was adorable and I liked how the characters interacted. A Princess for Christmas is definitely one of my most loved Christmas films. It’s yet another charming ‘hallmark’ proving why this channel is such a crowd-pleaser.
Fun Fact: this is also known as Christmas at Castlebury Hall and A Christmas Princess (the U.K.).
(Disclosure: this post does contain affiliate links; if you buy anything through these links, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you. Thank you to anyone who makes a purchase through these links. Read the disclosure page for details.)
You can find A Princess for Christmas digitally on Amazon Video
This one has a PG rating because Milo is something of a rebel and disrespectful of his elders. He steals a video game which Jules sees he returns and talks back to the adults in his life, and as brothers do, he plays a couple of mean tricks on his sister.