The New Hallmark Channel Movie: A Royal Winter
Many young girls dream of one day meeting a handsome prince and falling madly in love. In the land of Disney that seems to be a normal occurrence, but in real life it’s something more of a fairy tale.
In the latest Hallmark Channel movie A Royal Winter – part of the network’s annual Winterfest made-for-TV movies, young soon-to-be legal eagle Maggie Marks (Merritt Patterson from The Royals and the short-lived series Ravenswood) seemed more interested in landing a job at a top law firm in New York City than finding her prince. In fact, she didn’t even seem interested in dating.
But when her best friend Sarah insisted that Maggie join her on a two-week trip to Europe – while she waited for a big law firm to decide if they wanted to hire her – she (albeit somewhat reluctantly) consented to go.
Where were they heading? The tiny country of Calpurnia that looked very much like a winter wonderland with its own royal family. Not that that fact had any bearing in Maggie’s decision, though, as she was going to follow her friend’s advice to finally have an “adventure” after spending so many years with her nose buried deep in a book.
And an adventure she had…she met a handsome young man who turned out to be the crowned Prince of Calpurnia.
Okay, wait…I’m getting ahead of myself.
She actually met a reckless young man on a motorcycle who nearly ran her down while running over her newly purchased red hat*. Give the young man credit, though, as he bought her a new one and asked her out for a coffee.
As Maggie and Adrian (the prince) (Jack Donnelly from the BBC America series Atlantis) got to know each other – without the benefit of her knowing his true identity – it was clear that they had chemistry. But, of course, Maggie wasn’t interested in dating…except Adrian’s charm slowly won her over.
That is until she learned the truth about who he really is thanks to a visit to the Calpurnia Museum of Art where she and Sarah found Adrian’s portrait hanging on the wall. (Although I have to admit that portrait wasn’t quite that flattering to Adrian’s handsome features; am I alone in that opinion?!?)
As is to be expected in all fairy tale like stories, Maggie isn’t all that happy that Adrian kept the truth from her, but after learning about the foundation he created to help low income kids; a foundation that he kept secret from everyone, including his mother the Queen, she couldn’t help but let herself fall.
Enter the Queen Mum – Queen Beatrice of Calpurnia that is (Samantha Bond of Downton Abbey fame and all those 007 movies where she played Miss Moneypenny) – who was less than happy about her only son cavorting with a “commoner”.
However, in true Hallmark Channel style, Maggie eventually won over Queen Beatrice by showing her what her son did in his “spare” time with the foundation, helping all of those children for so many years. And while, at first, the Queen wanted nothing more than for Maggie to return to America – even arranging for Maggie to get the job at that big NY law firm – she eventually realized the error of her ways. In the end, she offered Maggie a job as the legal counsel for Adrian’s foundation that she wanted to see expanded to other countries.
As Prince Adrian spoke at his coronation and assumed the throne of King of Calpurnia, thinking that Maggie had gone back home, he was surprised to see her enter the castle and back into his life.
Did you watch A Royal Winter? What did you think of it? Please share your thoughts below.
If you would like to read other reviews of Hallmark Channel movies, please check out our editor Melissa’s review of last week’s Love on Ice and my thoughts on last month’s Countdown to Christmas movie A Nutcracker Christmas.
*We’ve had several inquiries about that lovely red hat. With help from the fine folks at The Hallmark Channel, we were able to get in touch with Costume Designer Luminita Lungu who identified the hat as one from Zara’s winter collection. It’s no longer available in Zara’s online store, but check the winter clearance section at a store that carries the brand, or give eBay a try.
NOTE: Based on comments from our interested readers, we wanted to include the following information:
* The song sung by the children is called “Lavender’s Blue,” an English folk song and nursery rhyme that dates back to the 17th century.
* This song was also featured in the latest Cinderella film directed by Kenneth Branagh and starred Downton Abbey alum Lily James (who sang the song near the end of the film) and Game of Thrones star Richard Madden. You can see a video of the song that includes the lyrics here:
* The country of Calpurnia, featured in A Royal Winter, is actually fictional.
* We are looking into where the red hat, featured at the beginning of the movie, can be purchased.