Spencer ★★★★

TIFF 21’

I don’t have much to say. It was a heart wrenching film and Kristen Stewart was fantastic. I think the best biopics are the ones that only cover a small portion of the person’s life - otherwise it can become too ambitious with not enough substance. Spencer exemplifies the slice of life biopic as it follows Princess Di during one Christmas at one of the Crown’s royal estates. The film opens with a title card that says “a fable from a true tragedy” and the film shows exactly that. Larraín takes some creative licenses and it gets surreal at times - but it doesn’t stray away from the story of a woman who feels incredibly alone despite the number of people surrounding her. I welled up a few times - a particular sequence representing her desire to escape and go back to the past was especially emotional. There is so much more to dissect including how the mise-en-scene mirrors Diana’s inner turmoil/lonliness, the appearance of a certain historical figure in Diana’s hallucinations, and Timothy Spall’s character as the watching eye. But maybe that’ll be for a second viewing!

Side note the film score really stood out (some jazz pieces that made certain scenes unsettling in a good way) and I loved every one of Diana’s outfits

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