It’s the festive season and Netflix is adding several festival themed films in its repertoire. This might be a new experience for Indian audiences. Such films are saccharine sweet, have a simple story and the basic underlying idea is to ‘make people believe’. Some of these festival films are iconic – like A Wonderful Life – but many are just something that the family views over the Christmas weekend. However, the festival film concept gets some newer concepts added, like the one we see in The Princess Switch.
The Princess Switch adds three of the most interesting aspects in cinema, royalty, doppleganging, and Christmas. A young Duchess finds a baker who has striking resemblance to her. The Duchess is about to get married to a Prince and but decides to switch places with the baker for a few days. What happens next forms the rest of the story.
The Princess Switch has the old concept of switching identities, but the new treatment makes it work as a family, holiday viewing. Vanessa Hudgens, who plays both the protagonists does a good job of bringing in the holiday season for couples and families at home. Along with Vanessa Hudgens, the film stars Sam Palladio and Nick Sagar as the two romantic interests – one of the Duchess and another of the Baker.
What’s Wow: The Princess Switch knows what it is – a family friendly, sweet film. But even under that aegis, the film succeeds in raising the morality compass and making societal statements about class and being a good heart. Robin Bernheim and Megan Metzger, the writers, write a crisp screenplay that talks with the audience instead of to the audience.
What’s Blah: One integral part missing from this holiday movie is the adventure aspect – which is the fourth that’s necessary for a holiday film. We didn’t expect something as riproaring as Home Alone, or even as something action packed as Die Hard, but even so – it’s that one bit that’s missing. Another missing is the dramatic factor. The concept is full of opportunities to create dramatic sequences, but the writers conveniently skip it.
Parting Shot: Look no further for family friendly, cute-as-a-button entertainment this Christmas eve.
Cast and Crew
Cast: Vanessa Hudgens, Sam Palladio, Nick Sagar, Mark Fleischmann, Suanne Braun, Alexa Adeosun
Writers: Robin Bernheim, Megan Metzger
Director: Mike Rohl
The Princess Switch is now streaming on Netflix.