Netflix‘s The Royal Treatment is questionable in plenty of areas, but its delightful cast is the saving grace that makes the film a must-watch. Okay so, romantic comedies aren’t always perfect, and weighing in on cliches essentially requires suspending a lot of disbelief, but sometimes, it’s a bit much. And in The Royal Treatment, the accents are…a bit much. But the film is still a dazzling gem worth watching because the chemistry between Mena Massoud‘s Prince Thomas and Laura Marano‘s Isabella (Izzy) is precisely what we look for in a romantic comedy.
Following the royals trope, almost every angle of the film is as predictable as can be, except maybe the fascinating part lies in the detail that women are pit against each other. The Royal Treatment doesn’t go head-to-head with any unnecessary drama between Izzy and Thomas’ betrothed Lauren, but it’s refreshing to know that she doesn’t want to marry him either. Instead, she wants to focus on starting her own business.
Massoud and Marano’s chemistry is the most precious part of the film, without question. As someone who’s wanted to see Mena Massoud in more romance adaptations since his take on Disney‘s Aladdin, it’s pleasantly surprising that the universe has decided to deliver on this end. Thomas and Izzy start off on the wrong foot, but every decision that evolves their relationship into something more fits like the perfect kind of haircut.
I found myself most invested in the little moments that are often the most charming parts of a romantic comedy—Izzy’s frustrations with his behavior, and Thomas’ desires to do better because she’s lighting the kind of fire within him that’s bringing his best to the surface. The disguised moments, the good deeds, you know the trope, it’s all there.
But perhaps more importantly, it’s about the one moment where you know, without a shadow of a doubt, how invested you are in the ship, and it comes down to one thought stay. In any book, TV show, or film, if there’s a moment where one person tells another to stay, then that’s it. It doesn’t matter what else happens in the rest of the film because from that moment onward, if it’s filled with aching longing, then I’m sold. I’m in.
Add holding hands during this scene, and then we’re all going to need a week or two to recover. It’s that simple. It’s that beautiful, and usually, all it takes is that one scene.
Again, some of the jokes aren’t the best. Some moments are a bit hard to believe, even when you suspend disbelief. Still, the cast is fun. The story is intriguing enough, and the little moments make the love story delightfully charming. The two of them wanting to pursue their own dreams outside of what their parents wanted? Yes, please. That’s always a detail that’s easy to appreciate in films like this.
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The romance progression is solid—the tangible feelings are believable once they start to spend time together, and the means of challenging one another work best to sell a worthwhile story. The Royal Treatment is an overall great time, and it’s proof of the fact that both Massoud and Marano should be cast in more romantic comedies. If nothing else, you’ll have a ton of fun watching.