A great performance by Kristen Stewart fails to save this sadly dull film.
Let me begin by saying that I wanted to love this movIe. The story covering one weekend where the Queen of England celebrated Christmas with her family, as Lady Di decided to end her marriage, was intriguing beyond words.
But just like her marriage, the movie fell down a cinematic rat hole. Scene after scene was as tedious as it was boring.
To be quite frank, you felt the agony of Princess Diana up until the last five minutes of this 1 hour, 51 minute film. While Ms. Stewart did a fabulous job embracing Di’s morbid disillusion, you just wanted her to leave her pointless marriage so you could leave the theater.
Let me be clear that I’m not exaggerating. The entire Christmas celebration involved little dialogue and no humor. Di was followed by security twenty-four hours a day and she couldn’t even open the drapes in her room without suffering criticism. It was no wonder that all of her suitcases were stamped “P.O.W.” for Princess of Wales. You can guess its real meaning.
Ms. Stewart’s Lady Di read and identified with Anne Boleyn, who was beheaded by her philandering husband, King Henry VIII, centuries earlier. Only with the help of her servant Maggie, played with flair and meaning by Sally Hawkins, was she able to keep her sanity and flee while keeping her head.
As noted above, the sole uplifting moments in the entire film involved Lady Di and her two young boys. They clearly loved her and you could see her finally smile as she drove away at the end of the film with her lads in the car.
Ms. Stewart could very well be recognized at Oscar time, and she would be deserving. Lady Di deserves to be remembered, just not this film.