Christmas Classics: ‘The Princess Switch’


The Princess Switch is an enchanting, warm-spirited tale that blends new experiences with self discovery. Graphic by Nivrithi Kuttuva

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to switch lives with someone, even if it was just for a couple of days? With the holidays approaching, The Princess Switch features this unique, captivating storyline of two strangers, who just happen to look identical, deciding to switch lives for a few days to experience a change. Featuring a cozy setting in Belgravia, it is the perfect rom-com to watch with your family.

Stacy DeNovo, an avid baker in Chicago, was entered in a baking competition in Belgravia by her close friend Kevin Richards in order to cheer up during Christmas. DeNovo had always been the type of person to not do anything spontaneous, so initially she didn’t really want to go, but later decided to compete as a way of moving on from a difficult break-up and to enjoy the little moments of life. Meanwhile, her doppelganger Lady Montenaro lived a very uptight, royal life in Belgravia with limited freedom. Valuing her duties more than what she loved, her marriage was arranged with a prince whom she was not particularly interested in. At the point when the doppelgangers bumped into each other, it was not surprising that Montenaro wanted to take a small break from her royal life and live as a normal person for a couple of days. When DeNovo and Montenaro pulled a ‘princess switch’, they were faced with dealing with the other’s life for a couple of days – and this is where they discovered what they had been missing all along in their own lives.

Vanessa Hudgens, who plays both DeNovo and Lady Montenaro, was able to capture the unique personalities of the two characters and contrast them with their own unique quirks. Without her, the movie would simply not have been that memorable. She did a phenomenal job of bringing different elements from DeNovo and Montenaro such as their accents and mannerisms, which brought humor to the film. The characters were all very likeable and it was interesting to see how they developed throughout the movie. Although the plot is very unrealistic in the way that the two girls could switch without many noticing, and the romantic aspects are a bit cliche, it is a very cute and enjoyable movie nonetheless. By being placed in a completely different environment and having to adapt, DeNovo and Montenaro each found something new in the other’s life that they felt they were missing before and that helped them to truly pursue what they are passionate about.  In the end, the inspiring message of the movie that stood out was that a change in environment can lead to a change in perspective, which can allow people to truly find what they desire.

The editing is especially important in a movie where one actor plays two characters. Almost all of the time, the editing was seamless in this movie. However, there was one time where the body double was overlooking the scene, which means that they probably forgot to edit Vanessa Hudgens’ face on hers. Nevertheless, I did not notice that editing mishap in the movie when I watched it so it is not noticeable. Aside from that, the shift in setting from Chicago to Belgravia allowed a Christmas-feel to resonate through the scenes with the snow and lighting.

All in all, you should definitely add The Princess Switch to your list of Christmas movies to watch because it captures the beauty of the holiday time and echoes that spending time with people you love and enjoying the little moments is what truly matters. Even though it is targeted toward children, people of all ages can enjoy the enchanting spirit of this movie. It shows that there is a lot of good that can result in switching things up a little bit which can lead to new discoveries about who someone truly is.