Great American Family

Jingle Bell Princess (2021)

December 1, 2023

I recently did a review on Twas the Text Before Christmas (2023) which was suprisingly adorable and there was real chemistry between leading stars Merritt Patterson and Trevor Donovan. My intent has been to focus on 2023, which has so far put the studio rivalry in the spotlight. Great American Family with former Hallmark Queen Candace Cameron-Bure have been kind of silent the past few years. Well, they are taking 2023 by storm putting out numerous movies to rival Hallmark. While one studio is becoming woke and venturing from the tested method, Great American Family is staying true to what made Hallmark special. Sooner or later, I’ll do a comparison between the two studios and how their movies rate.

Again, I digress. As I was saying, I want to focus on 2023. But, the chemistry between Patterson and Donovan in Twas the Text Before Christmas (2023) was palpable so when I saw Jingle Bell Princess had the same two leads I gasps.

What? Studios use the same actors over and over and over in their holiday films?

My brain’s stunning thoughts

This film, based on the novel His Jingle Bell Princess by Barbara Dunlop (there has to be a better name for that…sounds like a Harlequin my mom would read), has Patterson playing Princess Amelia of the eastern European nation of Vollan. Where is Vollan? I’m pretty sure it’s the country shaped like a boot. I’m not geography expert, but according to this map I just made–yep–it’s the country with Rome and Naples.

No matter, Princess Amelia’s private jet gets grounded in quaint Tucker, Maine and she has a run-in with single father, Sam Cutler (played by Donovan).

Now, here is where it gets trippy. Princess Amelia is from eastern Europe but has a British accent. Is the accent real, or did she fake an American accent in Twas the Text Before Christmas (2023)? Perhaps there is NO real way of knowing….

Anyway, Princess Amelia keeps her royalty a secret for some reason and assumes the role of a caring, kind, normal girl next door! She embraces the rustic New England life, enjoying time away from the rigors of the palace and His Royal Highness, her father.

Of course, Princess Amelia’s plane accidently leaves without her and she is stuck when a winter storm moves in…honestly, someone needs to get fired over this one. At least, and if nothing else, I am going to write a strongly worded letter to the King of Vollan demanded the resignation of the person whose only job is to keep eyes on the princess. They failed miserably.

While stuck in Tucker, and never without a seemingly perfect fitting pair of clothes, Amelia as she is now called (hidden princess plot twist…so original and dynamic), falls in love with Sam and his family.

Enter tragedy, which haunts Sam and keeps him from attending the Christmas Eve town celebration. That is, until Amelia convinces him! Fast forward, there are speeches, kings arriving, identities disclosed, secrets bared, and planes taking off. Apparently Vollan has an amazingly fast plane that can leave Maine in the mid-morning and arrive in time for Christmas dinner in Eastern Europe. Who’s counting? Who’s counting! Get off your high horse! Miracles happen at Christmas.

What’s that you ask? Why would the plane be leaving mid-morning? You are going to have to sit back and watch this crispy bad boy to see what happens in the ending!


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