In this streaming Netflix original movie, Stacy De Novo is a baker with a tasty reputation in the Windy City. She’s talented, organized and never veers from her schedule. That is, of course, until her best friend and sous chef, Kevin, enters her into one of the most renowned patisserie competitions in the world—located in magical Belgravia.
Stacy’s not thrilled at first. But a competition and short vacation might be nice—as long as every second of their trip is planned. So Stacy, Kevin and his daughter, Olivia, head to Belgravia for a shot at first place.
One day, as Stacy is setting up for the day’s events, she runs into a future member of the royal family, Lady Margaret, who, weirdly enough, looks exactly like her.
And it just so happens that the future princess wants a break before her upcoming wedding to Prince Edward, a man she barely knows. So Stacy decides to switch places with Lady Margaret. You know, just for a few days.
But things don’t go as planned, and Stacy and Lady Margaret must learn to navigate the false identities they’ve temporarily inhabited before someone finds out—or before they both fall in love with the other’s partners.
Stacy’s best friend, Kevin, is supportive and encouraging, always pushing Stacey out of her comfort zone and seeing her potential. He convinces her to fly to Belgravia, to pursue her dreams and to embrace spontaneity before too much time passes.
When Stacy is welcomed into the royal palace (posing as Lady Margaret, of course), she opens the eyes of those in royalty to the needs of the community. She encourages Prince Edward (and his parents) to help the country’s orphans and to understand how their charities function. She’s soon compared to Edward’s grandmother, an outspoken woman who was unafraid of being unconventional. She also shows Edward that a queen should be treated with as much dignity and respect as a king. Edward and Stacy learn from one another, each working on their weaknesses as they appear.
Lady Margaret, for her part, is driven by loyalty and duty to her deceased parents. She selflessly pushes aside her own feelings so that she can keep a vow. Once she steps away from the spotlight, she begins to understand more about herself and her desires. She is kind, poised, spontaneous and lively.
Both Stacy and Lady Margaret are compassionate and care about others (although Stacey can sometimes seem a bit brusque). Both women love Kevin’s daughter, Olivia, and are conscientious regarding her needs (and the needs of others). Both women learn to open their hearts to love and new experiences.
Lady Margaret’s servant cares for her and works hard to protect her interests. Stacy tells a young girl that being a princess means that you care about others. Edward gives Stacy a family crest that signifies the royal familial values of “truth, love and honor.” Edward tells a pesky helper that it’s “always dignified to be kind.”
Even though there are a few disagreements throughout the film, all problems are resolved in the end. Characters learn the importance of honesty, perseverance and commitment.
We hear a reference to someone’s romantic “destiny.”
Couples kiss, hug, hold hands, slow dance and flirt. One woman wears a slightly revealing outfit, and a woman dotes over a shirtless man. A daughter knows that her dad is “crushing big time” over a woman, and her father occasionally talks about his romantic interests with his young daughter. A woman makes a brief comment about sleeping with a judge in order to win a competition.
Lady Margaret says that her parents passed away when she was a young girl. A child refers to Rudolph as the “blood sucking reindeer.” A driver nearly hits a woman with his car. A woman falls off a horse, while a man falls from a second story balcony (but is uninjured).
God’s name is misused twice. We also hear the phrases “shut it” and “p-ss you off.” Someone is called an “imbecile,” and a few other rude comments are made.
Men and women drink wine and champagne in one scene.
At the beginning of the film, Stacy is still very focused on her previous relationship with an ex-boyfriend. Her friends indicate that this has caused her to miss out on some important opportunities. But she can’t seem to move on, even after he is rude to her.
Stacy and Lady Margaret obviously have to lie in order to pull off their princess switcheroo, and a royal servant spies on the two when he suspects them of withholding information.
Stacy’s best friend, Kevin, is a single father who is raising his daughter alone, after his wife left him. Stacy’s long-time baking nemesis spills coffee on her and tries to sabotage her baking competition by ruining a crucial appliance.
The Princess Switch is kind of like The Parent Trap.
No, there aren’t two identical twin sisters, separated at birth, who try to get their parents back together. But there are two women who are mysteriously identical, who decide to switch places, and who then learn about their lives from a different point of view. It’s safe to say that the inspiration for the movie has been used before.
Still, it’s that very predictability that makes the film sweet. There are a few kisses here and there, a suggestive reference, a few drinks and some rude comments. But, as predictable as Christmas itself, the characters here learn important lessons about life, love and honor as self-sacrifice shines brightly in this Netflix original.
Kristin Smith joined the Plugged In team in 2017. Formerly a Spanish and English teacher, Kristin loves reading literature and eating authentic Mexican tacos. She and her husband, Eddy, love raising their children Judah and Selah. Kristin also has a deep affection for coffee, music, her dog (Cali) and cat (Aslan).