Starring: Kristen Stewart, Timothy Spall, Jack Nielen, Freddie Spry, Jack Farthing, Sean Harris, Stella Gonet, Richard Sammel, Elizabeth Berrington, Lore Stefanek, Amy Manson, and Sally Hawkins
Director: Pablo Larraín
At first, Pablo Larraín's Spencer seems cold and harsh in a manner that prevents one from becoming emotionally invested, but as one realizes where the film is headed, the deliberateness of that choice becomes clear. As much as this is a film about Diana Spencer (Kristen Stewart), it’s also about cages, the lives they suffocate, and what can flourish outside of them. Stewart has never been better, with her performance surely to be an Oscar winner, and the design work is absolutely stellar. Jonny Greenwood's jazz-infused score is another awards-caliber success as well.
Spencer has yet to leave my subconscious and I doubt it will for some time, as the movie takes an interesting look at Princess Diana (Kristen Stewart) in ways that aren’t even slightly conventional. Stewart has never been better, giving a stunning and thoroughly heartbreaking performance, while Pablo Larraín's breathtaking direction simmers through nearly every frame. The incredible production values and cinematography blew me away, and Jonny Greenwood's haunting score really sets the tone. This film, easily one of the year’s best, ultimately builds to an incredibly satisfying ending that left me smiling as I left the theatre.
Spencer checks nearly all the boxes for an Oscar contender: An artsy take on a (generally) true story about a famous figure starring a talented young actress who has yet to elevate from “movies” to “films.” And, you know, director Pablo Larraín and star (and likely Oscar winner) Kristen Stewart absolutely understood the assignment. They kill it. That said, I didn’t enjoy the experience. Between the slower parts and the random flights-of-fancy, it portrays Princess Di (Stewart) as somewhat crazy, making it hard to invest in her. I definitely respect the craft of Spencer, but I didn’t like the movie.