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The Prince and Me

Anyone remember this 2004 movie, one of Julia Stiles’ (lately of “The Bourne Supremacy”) lesser efforts? Unless you’re a fan of Julia’s, you won’t.

If a plot could be moth-eaten, this one’s tatters would be in tatters. It’s the very familiar story of a commoner barmaid who falls in love with a prince, except she doesn’t know he’s a prince, of course. He’s incognito as a student. Actually, the basic plotline goes all the way back to a 1927 silent movie called “The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg”, which starred Norma Shearer and Ramon Novarro. Mario Lanza fans will know the 1954 version, which starred Ann Blyth and Edward Purdom. Mario sang the soundtrack. Don’t worry, there is no opera music in this rendition of “The Student Prince”!

Julia Stiles is Paige, a way too serious college student in pre-med studies. Following the tradition of her cinematic predecessors, she also works part-time at the college pub. Her life is pretty much study/work/study. While her friends may be a tad scatter-brained – one has changed her major six times – they enjoy life a lot more than Paige does. And she’s keenly aware she’s the only unattached female in her group.

Luke Mably is Edvard, the Crown Prince of Denmark. His life is pretty much party/race cars/party, much to the dismay of his royal parents and the delight of the paparazzi who document his playboy antics. One day the bored (and apparently not-too-bright) Edvard sees a commercial for a “Girls Gone Wild” type of DVD. These “wild girls” reside in state of Wisconsin. Seeking fresh, er, challenges, the prince persuades his none-too-bright parents he needs an American education. Soon he’s off to college in Wisconsin, accompanied by nursemaid/bodyguard Soren. And don’t call him Prince Edvard, he’s now just plain “Eddie”.

If you don’t know where Paige and Eddie meet, then you haven’t been paying attention. He wants her to display her assets a la “Girls Gone Wild”. She sprays him with soda. Paige and Eddie meet again when they are paired together in a chemistry class. While Paige is a chem whiz, she’s not so great in her required elective: a Shakespearean class. Lo and behold, Eddie is a whiz at something besides being a princely jerk and offers her his help. And without experience, he gets a job at the college bar, just by mentioning Paige’s name. Only in the movies…

Meantime, back at the ranch, I mean, the Danish palace, there’s trouble a-brewing. The king is sick and the paparazzi are missing Edvard’s antics. They decide to track the missing heir down.

Back in Wisconsin, romance is a-brewing between Eddie and Paige, and Soren’s becoming a video game addict. But unpleasant reality intrudes when the paparazzi discover Eddie, exposing his secret identity and new romance.

Does Paige forgive and forget and follow her man to Denmark? You betcha. Inevitably Paige has to make a choice: does she want to become a doctor or a princess?

Twelve-year-old girls may not notice this film is on autopilot but you surely will. By the way, for the parents of twelve-year-old girls, the movie is PG-rated.

The Prince and Me” is available on DVD. Extras include deleted and extended scenes, a gag reel and a trailer.

This slight movie was followed by a 2006 direct-to-video effort called “The Prince and Me 2: Royal Wedding”, with someone named Kam Heskin taking on the role of Paige. Luke Mably remained as Prince Eddy.




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