Given the success of their “royal romances,” it’s little wonder that Hallmark Channel continues to make these stories. Their latest is a part of their Countdown to Christmas campaign, and presents Christmas at the Palace.
Christmas at the Palace (2018) Hallmark Review
Living out of a suitcase these past four years has been an adventure, but Katie (Merritt Patterson) is ready to go home. She’s just not sure where that is. As a former figure skater, Katie is now a trainer and choreographer for a travelling ice show. Together with her best friend (Brittany Bristow), she’s about to return to New Jersey and open a new training center. But first, their final tour stop takes them to a small European country.
While in San Senova, Katie makes the acquaintance of the tiny country’s king, Alex (Andrew Cooper). His daughter is a figure-skater-in-training, and given the idea thanks to Katie’s show, Princess Christina plans a skating benefit. As Katie organizes this event, feelings for this place, and the king, soon turn into something much more personal.
Every time Hallmark produces a new “royal” romance, no matter the season, they’re always poised to charm. Whether it’s the unique summer romance Royal Hearts or my nostalgic favorite, A Princess for Christmas (which is also Hallmark’s first of this genre), they always make me smile. Christmas at the Palace is no different.
TV FILM REVIEW | Crown for Christmas (2015) – NYC Maid Finds Royal Love Story in Hallmark Christmas FilmDo you love #Hallmark's 'royal romances'? If so, don't miss their 2018 #Christmas original, Christmas at the Palace – A Starry Royal #Romance Click To Tweet
To be honest, this isn’t my favorite out of each of these royalty-esque scripts. There isn’t anything wrong with this story, it’s just that it’s missing something. Prior to this, I’d seen Merritt in other TV productions, the last of which was, ironically, also a king-meets-ordinary-girl plot. Andrew has the accent (as a proper European king should!) and was also in Hallmark’s Royal Hearts. Though everyone suits their roles really well, and there’s no one who ruins anything, I do think there’s a missing connection between the actors. Unfortunately, this is one of those scripts that confesses an “I love you,” which doesn’t help anything. The short window of time this film covers makes the profession hard to believe; and yet I still love every second.
That said, this film is again a piece of Christmas magic. It’s a sweetheart of a story that warms the heart. Something we all look for, and love this time of year. I really like the fact that the king isn’t as “starchy” as is the royal character stereotype. Of course, the locale (shot in Romania) is also beautiful. Oh, and this film is of the nostalgic variety for me since I used to love to watch figure skating (and yes, I went to a Stars on Ice tour show as a kid, and thought it was the best thing ever). If Christmas at the Palace sounds like a good Saturday night in movie to you, you’d be right. It’ll leave you with a smile, which is all we ever want from our Christmas movies.
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Content: as is true of every Hallmark Channel original, Christmas at the Palace is TVG or PG, and contains no bothersome content.
Photos: Hallmark Channel / Crown Media Press