Considering the mauling this one received from the professional critics upon its release, I was expecting it to be bad. Actually, in a masochistic sort of way, I was sort of hoping it’d be terrible. I already didn’t like the idea that the film even exists, to be honest. The poor woman died because the press couldn’t get enough of her, and here we are (what seems like only) a few years later rehashing her final months. Leave it alone, already!
The film focuses on the last two years of Diana’s life, mainly her (pretty much) secret relationship with heart surgeon, Hasnat Khan. Aaaaand that’s about it.
For this post I’ve taken inspiration from http://caragaleblog.wordpress.com/ and will divide my assessment into the good and the bad.
– A blonde wig is no substitute for a realistic portrayal of a true-life person. Not least if said person was an icon. Instead see The Iron Lady – an infinitely more divisive character but a much, much better film.
– Naomi Watts couldn’t do Di’s voice. She wasn’t even posh!
– It’s just kind of tacky.
– It made Di look like a bit of a nutcase, which is a bit sad.
– I’m not even convinced that this is a story that needs telling, much less, telling badly.
– Most importantly, this film is an utter BORE! She was the most famous woman in the world; she was a princess and mother of the future king of England; she was a humanitarian and moved in exclusive and glamorous circles; she was the centre of an infamous love triangle; she appeared on more tabloid front pages than you’ve had hot dinners and for all that, the biopic they make about her life is really, bloody boring.
– Oh, I almost forgot to mention the purely abysmal dialogue. Now, I’m assuming that the offending lines are the responsibility of bad screenwriting and aren’t actually attributable to the characters seeing as much of the action, such as it is, focuses on ‘behind the scenes’ goings on.
On how it’s possible to perform an 8 or 9 hour heart operation:
Hasnat Khan says (now, are you ready for this?) “You reach a place inside yourself where time has no meaning. You don’t perform the operation, the operation performs you.”
WTF does that even mean? It’s just shit! Gibberish!
– It’s two hours long.
Keira Knightley isn’t in it. So that’s something.
Overall, Diana is a trite, potentially well-meaning but porly executed bore of a movie. The actors seem to be trying hard, but there’s little material to work with. The dialogue is embarrassing. The whole thing is a teduous mess. And perhaps its biggest flaw is that it really didn’t need to be made in the first place. And if it did need to be made, I’m certian it’d be more at home on Channel 5 than on the big screen. No wonder it flopped!
While Diana is far from the worst film I’ve ever seen and (unfortunately it isn’t as bad as I wanted it to be) it really is hard to find any redeeming features at all.