This movie is about Prince Henry of England and Alex Claremont-Diaz, the first son of the United States, and it explores the evolution of their relationship from a fake friendship to a romantic entanglement.
Apparently, I have unknowingly summoned the Merthur-coded modern dramas into my TikTok feed. Lo and behold, this is one of them. In an unpopular opinion, I disagree with the movie being Merthur-coded. Prince Arthur and Prince Henry? I see the similarities; they’re both princes and blonde. However, Arthur was a jock, and Henry quotes literature. They’re not the same in terms of personality and cool factor. Although the subject of who is cooler is debatable. Merlin and Alex? Nah, they’re both sassy, and it ends there. I’m not even going to argue about it because, hey, it led me here. So, it doesn’t really matter. The important thing is that I have found yet another obsession to hyperfixate on, lingering quietly at the back of my mind during my waking hours. And boy oh boy, isn’t that nice?
See, this movie hooked me in from the first half. Enemies to lovers trope never gets old. In fact, I’m almost always here for it.
The thing I don’t like about romance Western dramas is that it’s unnecessarily oversexualized. Once or twice? Sure, that’s nice. I’m here for fluff and tension. Calm TF down? I get it, they’ve established a relationship but it does divert the focus away from the plot. The weight given to their relationship was too heavy too soon. They’re in their 20s, all the actions from both characters towards each other were believable, the hemming and hawing, the adrenaline, the hormones raging. But you know what’s not? POTUS asking Alex if Henry’s his forever? BRUH- I bet he doesn’t know, too? The entire story was rushed. It gave the impression of an insta-love kind of story and it’s not. This would’ve probably been better as a mini-series.
If you’re looking for a feel-good movie without really minding the intricacies of the plot so much, this is the one. The characters have plenty of chemistry, too.
As much as I wanted to say that this movie has bewitched me body and soul, it did not. I’m not even going to dissect the characters. Have I joined multiple Discord groups to discuss theories? Yes. Have I relentlessly skimmed TikTok content related to RWRB, including but not limited to deleted scenes, behind-the-scenes footage, and interviews? Absolutely. Have I ventured into the AO3 side of the movie? No, that’s where I draw the line.
So, after watching the movie, what have I done? First, I ordered the book. Afterwards, I curated playlists for the vibes while I’m waiting for the book by pulling up all of Mother Taylor’s songs. It started with “London Boy” and snowballed from there. Thanks to random nights I spent dedicated to dissecting Taylor’s song lyrics for no apparent reason, I now know the lyrics by heart. Hence, I have created three playlists from Henry’s POV, Alex’s POV, and a combination of both—all featuring Taylor’s Version. Unfortunately, I DNFed the book somewhere in the middle. The writing style wasn’t in my wheelhouse.
The thing about the movie is that it was fast-paced, and not in a good way. I’m going to chuck that to the fact that they didn’t have enough time. Nevertheless, it’s a feel-good, giggly, twirling your hair on you hand kind of movie with definite re-watch potential in the far future. A jar of sugar in movie form.