Is Kristen Stewart’s movie historically accurate?
Watch: Trailer for Kristen Stewart as Princess Diana in Spencer
Eyebrows rose in some quarters when Spencer has been announced. Kristen Stewart, it’s fair to say, is not the most obvious choice assume the role of the People’s Princess. Not only is she American, but the memes fueled hangover provided by the dusk saga means that, for many viewers, she is considered a bland actress capable of few facial expressions.
For the record, this has never been true. Stewart has always been a great actress with real reach, but it couldn’t be clearer today after her work in Personal buyer, Seberg and – showing off his comedic chops – The happiest season and charlie’s angels. Not only does she always do a great job, but she does it in a wide variety of films.
Yet Stewart is a divisive figure and seemed an unconventional choice for the darling of the British public – and the British tabloids. In the movie. Stewart’s take on Diana says with frustration that “I am a magnet for madness – the madness of others” and that is as true today as it was when she was alive.
Diana still dominates British popular culture, which is probably what attracted Chilean filmmaker Pablo Larraín to this film, written by Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight.
Larraín is in good shape with biopics like this, having directed the Jackie Kennedy film in 2016 Jackie, which earned Natalie Portman an Oscar nomination for her portrayal of the most famous first lady in U.S. history. This film was a strange and impressionistic portrayal of a woman in the midst of intense pressure, attention and emotional turmoil.
Spencer does something similar, taking place over three days over Christmas 1991. Diana is in Sandringham, celebrating the holiday season with her husband (The riot club‘s Jack Farthing) – despite their obvious marital issues – and the entire royal family. Newspaper photographers are said to be circling around, desperate to get a scoop on the royal scandal, and the shining eyes of Timothy Spall’s watchful squire are fully fixed on Diana.
It’s a more conventional and accessible film than Jackie, but still the one who kisses Larraín’s dreamlike eye for the biopic, assisted by Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood. It’s both a costumed drama, a psychological thriller and a gothic horror. Seriously.
How good is Kristen Stewart in Spencer?
K-Stew is currently the Oscar favorite for Best Actress for her work in Spencer, with most UK bookmakers currently giving you something in the order of 6/4 for his win. Watching the movie, it’s easy to see why she’s in pole position. It’s a fabulous performance.
Early photographs and trailers were enough to showcase Stewart’s weirdness transformation in the princess and the very solid and cut English accent it unfolds in the role. Stewart said she had immersed herself in Diana’s recordings and that she fall asleep listening to his voice – and this research has certainly paid off.
In the opening scenes of the film, Stewart’s Diana drives aimlessly around Sandringham and is late for the start of the festivities, walking into a roadside cafe to ask for directions. It’s the first time we’ve seen Diana in all her glory, and certainly Stewart makes up the affectation – giving the vocals both barrels and flirtatious nods. What is most impressive, however, is that this one moment is the only moment his work seems cartoonish. From that moment on, she completely disappears into the role.
Larraín’s directing and Knight’s screenplay give Stewart plenty of opportunities to expand Diana beyond just being the icon we already know, giving her a sarcastic acidity in the face of royal po-face lore. , as well as the bustle of a woman in the midst of a struggle for mental health. If the Oscar gets to him, he will be well deserved.
East Spencer historically accurate?
One of the smartest movements Spencer fact is to define its action very precisely over three days in December 1991. It is not a biopic of the cradle to the tomb exploring all the facets of the life of Princess Diana, nor a chronicle of her marriage breakdown. The film captures her in a snapshot of her life, dealing with stifling royal traditions and trying to be a mother to her children while gently pushing back restrictions on being a part of the Windsor clan.
In terms of Christmas accuracy at Sandringham, Stewart said there was an advisor on set to ensure that the characters “remained authentic” in their portrayal of royal circles. This includes the bizarre practice of everyone – yes, even the Queen herself – of being weighed when they arrive at Sandringham and when they leave, to make sure they have been well fed at Christmas – a tradition. dating back over 100 years to King Edward VII.
Larraín, in an interview with IndieWire, clarified the intentions of the film in terms of portraying the reality of Diana’s life. He said: “We don’t try to explain who she was or answer questions on a larger scale in her life. We imagine most of this based on what we think might have happened. “
The film does not hesitate to portray Diana’s struggles with bulimia, which were also recently treated by The crown with Emma Corrin who won the Golden Globe against the Princess.
Diana revealed in her famous 1995 interview with Martin Bashir that she struggled with eating disorder for several years when her marriage broke up. In Spencer, we see Diana often ill after meals – the object of her husband’s cruel mockery – and sneaking into the kitchens late at night to eat.
Another very real tradition represented in Spencer is the royal family’s pheasant shoot on Boxing Day. In the movie, Diana is adamant that William and Harry shouldn’t be involved in the filming, while their father is also sure they should wield guns. There is some debate as to whether this loathing for blood sports rings true with reality. Diana jokingly called her sons “Killer Wales” for their mastery of guns and she herself allegedly shot a deer in Balmoral – also shown The crownis the fourth season.
Diana’s protection officer, Ken Wharfe, however, written in 2014 that the princess believed that the royal obsession with shooting was “repulsive”. Royal expert Katie Nicholl echoed this in her book Kate: the future queen, contrasting Diana’s reluctance to participate in the tradition with Kate Middleton’s enthusiastic participation in the sport.
Made Spencer criticize the royal family?
It’s fair to say that the Royal Family are unlikely to put Pablo Larraín on their Christmas card lists.
Spencer focuses heavily on how Princess Diana felt stifled by the outdated customs and attitudes of the Royal Family. She shows up late numerous times during the movie and rebels by wearing her outfits pre-arranged in the wrong order. It’s a tiny act for pretty much all of us, but, in that tightly coiled bubble, it’s as punk rock as it gets.
Prince Charles, in particular, is not doing well. He is grimly portrayed, making nasty comments about his wife’s eating disorder and teaching her about the need to play by the rules, all while moving billiard balls maliciously. Jack Farthing’s performance is gooey and disgusting, which is likely to upset the same royal pundits who criticized Josh O’Connor’s take The crown.
In the end, it’s fascinating to watch Spencer against the backdrop of the ongoing royal turmoil over Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s decision to step down from frontline positions. Many of the points made by Markle in her interview with Oprah Winfrey will ring true for anyone looking at the shiny. Spencer, which portrays Diana as an innocent woman at the center of a true royal nightmare. These gothic horror elements are no accident.
Spencer is screened at the BFI London Film Festival and is set to hit UK theaters on November 5th.
Watch: Kristen Stewart Expecting Reviews From Spencer accent