So, I’m just a little royal wedding-ed out, quite honestly, but not enough not to watch this gem, starring the only actor in Reign that I actually ever rooted for, and some girl. I’m hiding in the basement while the laundry is going, and the rest of the group is off somewhere, not here. So, good times. Here we go with Royally Ever After. First off, that tiara she’s holding in this picture is a joke.
Oh my goodness, it is taking place in New Jersey!!!!!
Heroine Sarah Angela DeMarco jogs and talks to her boyfriend, Daniel, on the phone. He’s British sounding, who is apparently a struggling writer. Heroine is an art teacher, and they’ve been dating for a year.
Daniel has a picnic in a park, because they are celebrating that he sold his book. They’re stupid in love, but before they can have dinner or dessert, he proposes to her via a cupcake with a “BE MINE” heart on it. But before he officially asks the question, he has to confess that he’s not been honest – he’s a Prince!!! She doesn’t believe him. He’s Prince of St. Ives – a small monarchy off the British Isles. At least it’s not near Lichtenstein. They need his parents’ approval before their engagement can be official.
Dinner at her parents’ house – very put-upon Jersey accents on them, by the way. Sarah has to tell them that Daniel is a prince, and they are freaking out, but mom saves the day by saying they should use the good china for dinner. Sarah is still freaking out about this whole thing, and she has not thought about the logistics – will she have to move, can she still be a teacher, but it all doesn’t matter, they have a trip to St. Ives to take. It looks like Ireland. (Score! It was filmed in Sligo and Enniskerry – thank you IMDB)
Since they are back in his country, he has more curtailed hair, and is in the standard Prince casual wear of a button-down shirt under a v-neck sweater. That was literally the same outfit the Wills actor wore for 90% off the Will and Kate movie. His house is lovely, the location being Collooney’s Markree Castle, the ancestral seat of the Cooper family, partially moated by the waters of the River Unshin. And thanks to some more Googling, I also found out that they finished filming this in March of this year. That is some Super Fast Post-Production!
Sarah mistakes the butler for the King. It’s awkward, but no where near as awkward as her bow/curtsy. Didn’t she ever take a dance class? They are not hard. She’s also wearing jeans to the castle, and I don’t know, if you knew you were meeting royalty, don’t you think you would dress up that jeans and jacket combo? Not to be stuck in the 1950’s, but you could have worn a skirt. And I blame you, Prince Danny, for not giving her more pointers. Parents think she’s cute, but not Princess Material. “What on earth does he think he’s doing?” blusters Queen Patricia.
Why is it that everyone in these movies is overwhelmed by their castle bedrooms? It’s a room.
Danny’s sister Fiona shows up. She has that “I just smelled something bad” face. Plus, she’s a scary brunette, and she’s all out to sabotage the relationship. Queen P is a stickler for punctuality, and they have an hour for dinner, but Fiona tells her that she has enough time for a nap, and so her first night is ruined because Fiona is a bitch. Queen P is not a fan of someone missing dinner, and she’s convinced that Sarah is not a Princess. Well, honestly, if the definition of Princess is the horse-faced girl you raised, then no, she’s not, Queen P.
Sarah must have been exhausted because she has slept the entire night through and it’s half-six in the morning. She’s got to get her run in, of course, and so she jogs around the castle, and is saddened by the mediocre coffee she’s been served. She emerges from her room in a dress – so she does have one! She ends up in the kitchen, making friends with the kitchen staff. But in the formal dining room, they are waited on by white-gloved footmen, which is contrary to EVERY single definition of a gentleman’s country house breakfast is stuff on a sideboard and everyone helps themselves. They even make a point of saying that in Gosford Park. They then have awkward banter about their life in New Jersey, where Daniel says their favorite coffee shop has a delightful “Jersey Muffin.” As a proud voter in the Garden State, let me just assure you that this NOT.A.THING.
They now go riding – and she’s dressed appropriately, but is amazingly afraid of being on a horse. She is going to be so sore tomorrow, but at least it’s pretty. Danny says just be herself, but she’s still really nervous, and we’ve got 90 minutes of this, so you know that we’re going to have a lot more faux-pas before this thing ends in the ball that you know will happen.
She’s making friends all over the place – bargaining roses for protein shakes, bringing muffins to the security guards. Fiona the Bitch says Daniel can’t get married to a commoner, unless he wants to fly in the face of 1000 years of St. Ives tradition. Fiona warns him that he’s not in New Jersey, anymore. Obviously. And she looks more like Snooki than I do, so suck it, Fiona.
There is a fancy dinner – Queen and King are seated side-by-side, which is not a formal dinner thing, and of course, more faux pas. Danny has to direct her on which fork to use. But aside from that, he’s so not helpful. He reminds me of the girl Ben Stiller dated in Meet the Parents. That movie would not be nearly as uncomfortable or awkward if that girl had just said, “Hey, my dad’s a bit psycho, so here are some tips.” Anyway.
Danny has to dedicate a school, and he gives a speech, while his family is there. Why can’t the King give a speech? She gives him a kiss on the cheek and the paparazzi go crazy, making the front page. It’s a national crisis in St. Ives – which proves that when you make up countries, you need to make up MORE than just a prince gets a kiss from a pretty girl to have problems with. Queen P is pissed off, and so is Fiona. Why is Fiona such a bitch about this girl? BUT THEN! Fiona realizes that if Daniel gets married to Sarah, he can’t take the throne, which would make Her queen – and so everything falls into place. I’m amazed she doesn’t do a Mr. Burns “Excellent.”
The US paparazzi have staked out Sarah’s parents house, and she comes to the door AND STAYS IN THE DOORWAY in her bathrobe. Seriously. Sarah finds out about this while on another picnic with Danny. This guy loves picnics.
The face Danny makes when Fiona says she’s there to help is Priceless.
She’s getting princess lessons – which include getting out of the car. The whole household gets involved, but Queen P and King still won’t countenance a relationship with Sarah and Danny, so they’ve framed it as a “warm friendship” that will be unveiled at the Spring Gala, and they’ve invited her parents all the way from Jersey. Danny and Sarah have lots of clandestine moments together, and this actor really can sell anything, but they way he’s written, I’m annoyed at him. King watches them have fun, and has second thoughts. Queen P is a harder sell on it – she’s down with commoners. Suck it, Queenie.
The DeMarcos arrive at the castle. Fiona is wearing her cardigan over her shoulders. We’ve already discussed how I hate that, but I think the Hallmark designers have just decided that bitches don’t wear things with sleeves.
Awkward dinner party where the chef made Sarah’s favorite turkey meatloaf. It is also apparent that Sarah is going to have her sad times soon, as she realizes that if they get married, she wouldn’t be able to be a teacher, and she’d have to live in St. Ives, and she wouldn’t see her parents, and her in-laws majorly suck.
Sarah is starting to smell the stink of desperation on Fiona, which is good, because seriously, she’s a cartoon villain.
Danny and Sarah try to be normal and have coffee, but the paparazzi find them. Seriously, we have scandal to spare in this country, can’t we share some with St. Ives? Queen P is not a fan and has summoned Sarah for a dressing down in the garden. But Sarah gives as good as she gets and basically tells Queen P to suck it in the nicest way possible.
Sarah’s best friend butler Jackson finally tells her that in marrying a commoner, Danny would have to abdicate, and that Fiona is next in line, so she realizes why Fiona is awful. Only the King and Queen can make the royal decree to say that commoners are ok, and after the contretemps in the garden, Queen P is thinking that maybe Sarah ain’t so bad.
Royal Gala Time! And of course, there is a grand staircase. Sarah’s parents are there. Fiona is awful, and King has to give a speech, but Sarah isn’t there yet, because she has to make her big entrance down the stairs and make everyone gasp in amazement.
They get to waltz in the ballroom that has a carpet. Who has ever heard of carpet in a ballroom? I do not get it. Set designers, that is not a thing! Their dance is not Cinderella awesome, but it is nice, until he stops it to make a speech about how much he’s in love with Sarah. Fiona is lapping it up like Garfield and lasagna. HE PROPOSES and she says no and runs away in tears. He chases after her, but he doesn’t do a great job in convincing to stay, and I will say that the direction in this scene isn’t great – he just looks resigned to it, not anguished and inconsolable.
Queen P goes out to say sorry, and good-bye. Fiona and Danny have a conversation, and she doesn’t say that she’s sorry she’s a bitch, but he does go and halfheartedly chase after her car, and there’s the anguish and sadness. SAD TIMES GALORE.
Sarah’s back in NJ with her kids, and she’s overwhelmed with sad times, so she sends the class out to play at recess early without supervision. Back at the castle, the Queen is bringing her plate of Sarah’s mother’s lasagna to a small table in the drawing room, as Sarah had said it was a nice cozy place for a family dinner. They are still not fully out of the sad times there, either.
She’s out running away from her depression and Danny shows up in full Prince regalia. Apparently all the parliamentary issues of a commoner marrying a Prince gets taken care of off-screen, and he proposes with a copycat of the real Duchess Kate’s engagement ring, and she gets a job offer as principal of that new school. She says yes, but says there should be doves flying, which was a cute moment, and now everyone is happy and all of a sudden there are a million paparazzi – and the end.
I feel like this was the same as My Christmas Prince, and that Prince movie with Jane Seymour and Lacey Chabert, and, like, all the other ones. But that’s why we watch these movies, right? When things get so overwhelming that life just seems too terrible to contemplate, it’s nice to escape to stupid little countries like St. Ives and wonder what type of fork needs to be used with the salmon for 2 hours. I don’t know that I’ll revisit St. Ives again for a while, though, but I will, if you need me to, you know, just so you don’t have to.