“Spencer” is a British biographical film released in 2021, also known as “Princess Diana”.
The film is directed by Pablo Larraín, starring actors Kristen Stewart, Sean Harris, and Sally Hawkins.
The plot tells about the relationship between Princess Diana and Prince Charles after the appearance of the rumors of the man’s affair, and they fell into a marriage crisis.
However, it was during the Christmas holiday, and members of the royal family had to go to participate in routine celebrations.
Although they maintain consistent harmony on the surface, Diana has also made the most important decision in her life.
The perfect interpretation of Princess Diana’s temperament and charm
In the past, relying on the well-known Kristen Stewart of the “Twilight” series, in recent years he has begun to experiment with multiple types of works.
In addition to commercial films such as “Charlie’s Angels”, “Underwater”, and “Happiest Season”, she also has relatively literary “Personal Shopper” and “Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk”.
This time, she played the role of Princess Diana in the “Spencer” selected for the main competition of the 2021 Venice Film Festival, and also proved her acting prowess with her interpretation of the role.
The British Royal Family of “Spencer”
Speaking of the British royal family that “Spencer” focuses on, what do you think of first?
They are generally respected and loved by the people and have a huge influence.
On the other hand, because every move is the focus of everyone’s attention.
With the high attention of reporters and news media, the private lives and gossip news of royal family members have often become topics of discussion.
How much pressure will this bring to their lives?
This is the theme of the whole movie “Spencer”.
Princess Diana’s marriage
Princess Diana, the protagonist played by Kristen Stewart in the “Spencer” film.
Diana was born in the British nobleman “Spencer” in 1961. She is the third daughter of the family.
Several generations of Spencer have had close ties with the royal family.
Diana married British Prince Charles in 1981 and gave birth to two sons William and Harry.
However, this marriage that was blessed by everyone was broken because of Prince Charles’s extramarital affair.
They eventually separated in 1992, and the marriage ended in divorce in 1996.
The movie “Spencer” focuses the story on the later stage of the marriage between Diana and Charles.
On the Christmas day after Diana discovered that her husband was carrying her affair, according to past practice, members of the British royal family would gather at the manor house for three days of holiday every Christmas.
It’s just that this relaxing time, which was originally relaxing, brought unbearable pain to Diana’s body, mind, and soul because of the emotional conflict with her husband.
The opening background of “Spencer”
“Spencer” gave a complete explanation and description of the role of Diana at the beginning.
Unlike other members of the royal family who took a motorcade to reunite with their families, after Diana ended the Christmas Eve charity activities, she drove a convertible car across the wilderness, checking the map and heading to the manor.
As a result, Diana got lost on the way, and then she walked into a restaurant on the side of the road to ask customers for directions.
Although she finally reached her destination successfully, Diana was also the latest member of the royal family to arrive.
Since being engaged to Prince Charles in 1981, Princess Diana has become the most beloved member of the British royal family because of her elegant temperament and her love for high-profile charity work.
However, Diana’s approach to the people seems out of place in the relatively traditional and conservative royal family.
Therefore, in addition to the dislike of her husband in the opening of “Spencer”, Diana yearns for freedom. She does not want to be restrained by the system.
This also made her feel quite repulsive about this Christmas holiday that must be spent with other royal family members.
The tragic story adaptation of Princess Diana
“Spencer” marked “adapted from a true tragedy” in the opening title and instantly established the main tone of the whole movie.
From the time Diana entered the manor, whether it was the strict regulations set by the housekeeper, various itineraries, or the indifferent gaze that others deliberately ignored at the dinner table, her emotions became more and more with the accumulation of pressure. It’s getting more and more unstable.
Diana is an aristocratic girl who is very close to society. When she was young, her dream was to become a dancer.
She is enthusiastic about public welfare and even has done many low-paying jobs.
But after she married into the royal family at the age of 20, Diana changed her surname and her life changed accordingly.
As shown in the “Spencer” film, when Diana wants to dine and what kind of clothes she should wear, it is all taken care of by a dedicated person.
On the surface, this is the life many people dream of, but in fact it also made her lose her original freedom.
Spencer’s psychological pressure
As the imitation of all the girls at the time, Diana was beautiful and elegant.
She will always become a spotlight and the focus of people’s attention on various occasions.
Although this state of being highly valued and sought after seems beautiful, after the rumors of her husband Charles’s affair broke out, these attention and media reporters’ pursuits made Diana’s heart unconcealable fragility.
They became the main source of stress that kept pushing her to the brink of collapse even though she tried to fight hard.
The magnificent scene design of “Spencer” and the rich life of the royal family formed a very strong contrast with Diana’s inner chaos.
She longs to be loved, cared and cared by people, but not only her husband has an affair, but many servants around her mostly just use: “Perfect.” and “No problem.” to flatter her.
Even if they give advice, they only hope that Diana can behave “normally” and not ruin the image of the royal family.
But no one can try to understand, or can’t help because of position and class differences.
“Spencer”‘s character mood description
Director Pablo Larraín described the fragility and strength of the American First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy after the assassination of her husband Ken Kennedy in 2016 “Jackie”.
“Jackie” won the best screenplay award at the Venice Film Festival.
Now “Spencer” has shifted the focus to Princess Diana of England.
The film also allows the audience to have a deeper understanding and understanding of this character through her situation.
As a member of the royal family, she seemed to have everything, but after the scandal broke out, her every move became a topic of discussion after dinner, and no one around her could support her or let her express her feelings.
So I like “Spencer”‘s complete description of the protagonist Diana’s confusion about her identity and the change in her mood.
Under the interpretation of Kristen Stewart, we can feel her inner confusion and anxiety.
The movie compares Diana with the 16th century British queen “Anne Boleyn.”
“She was Henry VIII’s second wife, but because of her husband’s change of heart, she was crowned with the tragic experience of being beheaded for the crime of adultery, which deepened the shadow of fear in Diana’s heart.
This pave the way for the turning point of the follow-up story.
“Spencer”‘s Criticism of the Royal Family
Some people may say after reading “Spencer”: “If you want to wear a crown, you must bear its weight.”
But it’s like the weight machine in the film. Who determines the weight of the crown on Diana’s head?
Why can’t it be left to everyone to make adjustments?
After her marriage, Diana kept trying to live out herself in a closed environment like the royal family.
But what is sad is that even though she has become one of the most popular princesses among the British people, in the eyes of other royal family members, she is only a troublesome figure who may ruin her reputation at any time.
And doesn’t this also reflect that the entire system is overly rigid and does not know how to adapt. It cares more about the absurdity of the family image than the psychological state of the family?
Features of “Spencer”
The whole movie “Spencer” has many meaningful symbols and symbolic elements.
In addition to Anne Boleyn and the weight machine at the door, there are also the “pearl necklace” on Diana’s neck, and the “pheasants” that seem to be beautiful but not smart and can only be slaughtered by the royal family hunting on Boxing Day. .
In fact, they all clearly correspond to Diana’s status as a member of the royal family and a princess who has attracted public attention.
The true self of “Spencer”
So just like the beginning of the “Spencer” movie, Diana didn’t realize that she had lost her way near her hometown until she found the scarecrow full of memories.
She watched the Parker Manor where she grew up now becoming dilapidated.
In my memory, the little girl who used to run and play in it was tortured physically and mentally because of becoming a member of the royal family.
This also allowed Diana to finally find the true essence she had lost over the years on the desolate and decadent ladder with the help of Anne Boleyn’s Phantom.
From Diana tore off the pearl necklace her husband gave her, breaking free from the shackles of marriage and the status of the princess, to the next morning she went alone to the hunting location of the men to prevent her young sons William and Harry from participating in meaningless Bloody slaughter.
After Diana regained her original identity as a “Spencer” before she became the princess, she left the manor that was so cold that it made people shiver desperately.
She fought fiercely against the royal system that brought a lot of oppression to her.
The meaning of the ending of “Spencer”
I like the final ending of the “Spencer” movie.
The director did not choose to explain Diana’s life after her divorce from Prince Charles. Instead, she ended it with her refusal to be a pheasant waiting to be shot by royal norms and media opinions.
From the moment she took her two sons away in front of everyone, and drove the country roads together in a convertible, to the end the three of them sat on the banks of the Thames and ate the KFC that she had bought from DriveSpeed under the name “Spencer”.
With a relieved and a little sad face, with the background of Tower Bridge in London, it brings a lot of aftertaste to “Spencer” that can be left by the audience.
Perhaps the decision of “Spencer” that the princess will take the initiative to divorce the prince in the end is unbelievable.
But Diana was still able to make a brave choice without knowing how she would become in the future.
Not only can she escape the pain and pursue freedom as a “Spencer”, she can also cherish the precious time she can spend with her children as a mother of two sons.
This is quite moving.
“Spencer” film review conclusion
On the whole, although compared to “Als Hitler das rosa Kaninchen stahl”, “I Am Woman” and other biographical films that emphasize the plot level, “Spencer” has many in-depth descriptions of the character’s psychology, making it a relatively literary work. .
But not only Kristen Stewart perfectly copied Princess Diana’s charm and inner fragility with the best performance of her acting career, her performance made people feel warm and positive energy in addition to sentimentality.
Director Pablo Larraín also used another method similar to “The Shining”, through the three-day Christmas holiday that Diana was locked in a “haunted house” to create a fairly complete image of the character.
The amazing result of “Spencer” is undoubtedly the highest state of a biographical film.