Spencer Review: Kristen Stewart’s Princess Dee movie is a chilling ghost story

This review Spencer From the screening of this film at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2021. Stay tuned for more information when the film is released in November 2021.

Princess Diana Biography Spencer Not a typical biographical movie. Again, the director of this film, Chilean director Pablo Larraín (Pablo Larraín) is also not known for making familiar biopics. He described the life of Jackie Kennedy after John F. Kennedy was assassinated. JackieAnd the poet Pablo Neruda under the hunt of the new Chilean President Gabriel González Videla Neruda, Are original and determined films that pay close attention to specific moments in the life of the subject.

Same as Spencer, Larraín did not provide the expected story of Princess Diana. No courtship or fairy tale weddings, à la Crown. It does not portray her life as a newborn who is destined to reach higher heights. It also did not fix her as a foreseeable doomed victim. instead, Spencer The story took place on Christmas weekend in 1991, at the Queen’s Sandringham Estate. Diana (Kristen Stewart) still has a worrying marriage, or at least a partial marriage, with Prince Charles (Cold Jack Fashin). During her stay, Diana fought for the mother role of her two sons William (Jack Niron) and Harry (Fredy Spree) and faced her eating disorders, her family history and her daily routine. Domineering man of life.

Larraín’s film opens with a title card that reads “Fables from True Stories” and is not based on a completely true event. It also doesn’t want to tell about Diana’s life. Spencer It is an act of psychological horror, a ghost story, a survivalist picture carried by an immersive Kristen Stewart at the best performance of her career.

Stephen Knight’s script did not use the media structure to make the audience headache People’s princess myth. Knight and Larraín are too smart to use such a simple tool. Instead, they found a more ingenious way to weave her legend into a realistic narrative. Spencer At the beginning, Diana, without a driver or bodyguard, drove to Sandringham Manor by herself. The confident royal family lost its way and finally decided to stop and ask for directions. In front of ordinary people, she showed a shy, a little fragile personality. When her head tilted to one side, her eyes swayed towards the sky. This scene is the first outline in Stewart’s layered depiction of her: the difference between a private princess and a public-facing princess.

This is a biopic that focuses very much on analyzing Diana’s psychology, especially her many demons. But not in a lewd way. When heading to Sandringham Manor, she saw a scarecrow standing in the middle of the field, wearing her father’s red coat. (In real life, her father John Spencer died of a heart attack three months later that Christmas.) She went to retrieve her coat, hoping to clean it. Diana grew up on the estate of Queens Park Manor. Her Christmas trip was both an exciting journey home and an unfortunate duty. The source of grief affected her in different ways.

Diana is also associated with her ancestors in the movie. Major Equerry Gregory (Timothys Po), a rugged Scottish veteran who is now fascinated by the Queen, pesters Diana to follow tradition. A “game” allows visitors to weigh at the beginning of their arrival to see who gains the most weight during the holidays. This tradition has surfaced Diana’s insecurity about her weight. When she found a book about Anne Boleyn on the bed, probably after Major Gregory put it there, she dreamed of a distant relative, Henry VIII’s second wife, who was beheaded because he wrongly accused her of adultery. Between the coat and the spirit of Anne Boleyn, Diana is attracted by her now condemned childhood home.

Who can blame Diana for feeling bound? Except for her tailor and best friend Maggie (Sally Hawkins) and the manor’s sympathetic chef Darren (Sean Harris), she is almost isolated from the world.But again, Larraín is too smart to limit Spencer Hone Diana’s relationship with other royals around her, even her relationship with Charles and his mistress Camilla Parker Bowles. Instead, he draws attention by depicting how Diana tried to protect her son from the outdated, closed traditions of the royal family. But in the face of overbearing men like Charles and Major Gregory, coupled with the manor’s indomitable manners and her eating disorder, she could hardly protect herself. The enthusiasm she felt made her Christmas holiday more like a fight for survival rather than escape.

Jonny Greenwood’s score opens in a classical English style and then evolves into a disturbing symphony.Follow a similar aesthetic Jackie, Photographer Claire MathonAtlantic, Portrait of a lady on fire) Capture Diana with invasive close-up shots, staring at the princess’ heartbreaking facial expressions. Marton was also very interested in the disturbingly manicured features of the manor: the uniform garden, the strict movements of the simple servants, and the carefully prepared food and clothing, which contrasted sharply with Diana’s free fall. At the same time, the clothing works of the legendary Jacqueline Durran cover the hottest pieces of Diana’s most famous clothing, as well as a series of evocative fashions that often reflect Her state of mind.

Photo: Neon

But Stewart’s absolutely outstanding performance combined Diana’s legend and Laren’s concept of her to create a substantial version of a princess that does not rely on extensive or showy instincts. Stewart folded her body to reflect Diana’s tension, tilting her head in a familiar way, perfecting the princess’s voice. But other than that, her performance boils down to eyes. Stewart’s eyes swayed like switch knives on the grass. Each eye claims to be another victim, depending on the situation, showing a kind of loneliness or shyness. It was her eyes that allowed her to cross the performance line and enter an atmosphere of complete life. There has never been a moment when Kristen Stewart played Diana. She is Diana.

This movie has two climaxes. One is Diana finally returning to her childhood home. She was crazy and hallucinating, and Mathon’s camera approached her even more dangerously.This is where Jackie Editor Sebastián Sepúlveda shines, vivid and unforgettable montages show her life up to this moment. Another climax changed the tone of the movie from grim to celebration. Considering the gloom of the movie and how deep the despair it fell into, the rapid results of the carnival should make people feel sad, just like Laren is cheating on history. But it worked, because the director knew that the audience had an innate desire for Diana to have a happy ending.

In this sense, Lalin’s SpencerThis is an inspirational portrayal of the princess’s life. She is more concerned about finding new truths in her public and private roles, rather than following the familiar beats in her life. This is not a classic biopic that audiences are accustomed to watching. But it is the creative, anti-traditional film Diana deserves.

Spencer It will be released in the United States on November 5, 2021.