The story of former Hollywood star Grace Kelly's crisis of marriage and identity, during a political dispute between Monaco's Prince Rainier III and France's Charles De Gaulle, and a looming French invasion of Monaco in the early 1960s.
An elderly Margaret Thatcher talks to the imagined presence of her recently deceased husband as she struggles to come to terms with his death while scenes from her past life, from girlhood to British prime minister, intervene.
Richard E. Grant
Posters for the film was by coincidence placed at Place de l'Alma in Paris, near the entrance to the tunnel where the Princess of Wales died in a car accident in 1997. The placement of the poster caused uproar among public and the posters were eventually removed at the request of French distributor Le Pacte. See more »
Instead of taking the most interesting aspects of Princess Diana's life and revolving a sort of character study around them, this movie chose the easy route. It's a romantic film about a rich person who falls in love with another rich person and one of them just so happens to be Princess Diana.
Our title character is played by Naomi Watts, a fine actress with many profound roles under her belt, but sadly she is just no good as Diana. While they certainly got the hair and wardrobe correct, she just can't BE Princess Diana. The character is horribly written, selfish, manipulative and surprisingly stupid with no sense of presence or dynamic sensibility, it really is some of the worst romantic movie writing ever put to screen. Even if Watts had given the best performance of her life, it still wouldn't have made the character a convincing movie heroine.
Romantic interest Hasnat Khan is the only interesting or dynamic character in the whole movie. This is a man who's torn between his heart, his job, his faith and his family, but the horrible screenplay only serves to have him whine endlessly. The actor is really trying to make something work here but the script is just too much of a quagmire of clichés and melodrama.
Director Oliver Hirschbiegel who made the fantastic Downfall back in 2004 achieved the impossible, he made you sympathise with the Nazis. Through intense drama and character building he achieved a real intensity of characters working through strife. But this film is completely missing anything that made Downfall the masterpiece that it is, this movie feels like something made for television.
After viewing Diana I had a thought, perhaps it was impossible to make a convincing biopic about Princess Diana, perhaps it was hubris to ever try. By glossing over everything that made her life so pronounced (her relationship and breakup with Prince Charles, her humanitarian work and eventually the suspicious circumstances around her death) it made the work incredibly dull, but perhaps if they did involve the more risqué occurrences it would have made controversy impossible to avoid.
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