Red, White & Royal Blue Review – A funny, smart, and sassy romantic comedy

By Marc Miller
Published: August 11, 2023 (Last updated: January 26, 2024)
2023 Prime Video movie Red, White and Royal Blue Review


Red, White & Royal Blue is an unapologetically dedicated genre film with charming performances from the leads.

Here is our review of the 2023 Prime Video movie Red, White & Royal Blue, which does not contain spoilers.

We are in the groundbreaking age of romantic comedies, in particular when it comes to LGBTQ+ rom-coms. New ground was broken with Hulu’s Fire Island, a funny and enjoyable comedy with a sense of community from director Andrew Ahn.

Then Bros came along as the first big-budget studio LGBTQ+ rom-com. Nicholas Stoller’s film is a seminal moment in comedy history.

Now we have Red, White & Royal Blue from Prime Video. This is an LGBTQ+ rom-com with an unabashed appreciation of the genre, while also giving the viewer a sense of hope for the future.

Red, White & Royal Blue Review and Plot Summary

Based on the New York Times best-selling debut by Casey McQuiston, Red, White & Royal Blue follows the love story within U.S.-British relations.

Well, in a sense, anyway. You have Alex (Taylor Zakhar Perez), the son of the first female U.S. President (Uma Thurman). Alex is a bad boy with a party reputation who has an ongoing feud with Henry, the English Prince (Nicholas Galitzine).

The guys have been bickering for years. Henry claims Alex must wear lifts in his shoes, and Alex thinks Henry is a pompous prick. Yes, it’s your typical romantic comedy where the tension is so thick that it falls on the other side of love, not hate.

That’s even before they knocked over the cake at Prince Philip’s wedding. Soon, their sexual attraction grows from sparks to something much more profound.

Matthew López, who co-wrote the script with Ted Malawer (Halston), makes his directorial debut behind the camera. Lopez makes a faithful adaptation of McQuiston’s LGBTQ+ romance novel.

Not to mention staying close to the core themes and, frankly, comfort food cliches close to the genre’s core values.

Those would be meeting or, in this case, introducing the audience to the characters cutely. The fact that these two are opposites that attract. Also equipped with over-the-top grand gestures, friends to lovers, and love triumphs over all. Which in the last one takes on the meaning of acceptance.

Now, as much as I want a crucial State in the storyline to accept the prospect of a same-sex couple, this may be the most pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking based on laws passed there in recent years.

However, the script is more about hope for the future, not the current conscious bias in some areas of the country (and world) we still live with. Simply put, we are meant to grow and get better.

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The performances are what they are. Perez is funny and wickedly charming. Galitzine’s Henry has that Hugh Grant “lovably befuddled” when coming out of his shell. I love the Thuman and Clifton Collins coupling, though I wish Collins had more screen time.

However, it’s Sarah Shahi’s Zahra, a presidential staffer, who steals every scene she’s in with a funny, smart, and sassy performance.

Is Red, White & Royal Blue good or bad?

Red, White & Royal Blue is a good romantic comedy seen through a fresh LGBTQ+ lens. The performances, particularly from the leads, are charming, and the scene-stealing Sarah Shahi is also memorable.

Is Red, White & Royal Blue worth watching?

Despite declining interest in the genres, Red, White & Royal Blue is worth watching because López looks at all-consuming love from a fresh perspective. The interest in the “rom-com” genre really hasn’t died, but the platforms and shifts in social issues have.

This movie is a byproduct of that growth.

What did you think of the 2023 Prime Video movie Red, White & Royal Blue? Comment below.

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