RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE is a romantic comedy with an LGBTQ+ twist. Based on the very popular New York Times bestseller of the same name by Casey McQuiston, this is Tony Award-winning playwright Matthew López’ first crack at writing and directing a feature film. He shares screenplay credit with Ted Malawer.
What does a working-class kid from Texas have in common with a member of Britain’s royal family? Initially nothing except an intense dislike for one another. Alex Claremont-Diaz (Taylor Zakhar Perez), the Texan, is the son of the President of the United States, Ellen Claremont (Uma Thurman). Prince Henry (Nicholas Galitzine) is the younger brother --- and spare --- to the heir to the throne, Prince Philip (Thomas Flynn).
When they meet again at Philip’s wedding, the two young men cause quite a commotion, straining U.S./British relations. They are forced into a “truce” of sorts, which sets them on a path to a much deeper relationship. When both Alex and Henry decide to come out to their respective families, the consequences for everyone are precarious.
Galitzine and Zakhar Perez are equally handsome and charismatic, making this tale of two young lovers from such different backgrounds believable. Plus, they exude a strong magnetic attraction proving that they are well cast in these roles. As a couple, they are funny, playful and engaging --- exactly what is most successful in a rom-com.
López and Malawer’s script is, at times, cliched and predictable. Alex’s parents, especially his father, Oscar Diaz played by Clifton Collins, Jr., are very supportive of their bisexual son. While Henry’s grandfather, the King, wonderfully cast Stephen Fry who is an activist for LGBTQ+ rights, is less than thrilled that his grandson is gay. But none of this totally detracts from McQuiston’s original message that people should be free to love whomever they choose --- no matter their station in life.
RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE is a charming diversion from all the political strife embroiling the world. It features beautiful sets, splendid costumes, a great soundtrack --- and two gorgeous lead actors. ‘Nuff said ---
Only available on Prime Video
Opinion: See It Now on VOD
Two handsome young men whose family positions are known worldwide, and who reside on different continents, are thrust together in what is billed as a romantic comedy. In RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE, () is the son of American President Ellen Claremont (Uma Thurman). Prince Henry () is the younger son of the royal family in the U.K.
Initially they despise each other, but after a peculiar incident at the wedding of the prince’s older brother,
Henry and Alex learn to accept each other and much more. Their relationship evolves into a mutual love. These two literally cannot keep their hands off one another. However, the inherent problems lie in the fact that President Claremont is in a tight campaign to get re-elected for a second term, while the stoic British royal family could be irreparably harmed if word gets out.
Such is the unusual premise of RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE. It’s an interesting idea --- based on the book by Casey McQuiston --- that unfortunately falls a bit short as a compelling drama within a comedy. That is not the fault of the two lead actors who are very good and credible. The president’s deputy chief of staff, Zahra Bankston, is ably played by Sarah Shahi. She has the best lines and almost steals the show.
Thurman’s character is disappointing as she’s not particularly tough or politically savvy. But, at least the film does give us a female president of the United States!
Only available on Prime Video
Opinion: Watch on VOD