Film Review: Spencer



Spencer is without a doubt one of the best films to come out of 2021. Pablo Larrain does an incredible job of telling this arduous story in a way that makes you feel exactly how he wants the characters to feel. Spencer tells a fictionalized version of real events in a way reminiscent of the storytelling found in Tim O’Brien’s “The Things They Carried”.

Spencer tells the story of Diana, Princess of Wales and her decision to leave Prince Charles over the course of a claustrophobic and extremely uncomfortable two hours of suffering and emotional distress. The film is steeped in powerful metaphors and imagery, and sometimes direct confrontations with the uncomfortably reality of royalty. This film does an excellent job of telling Diana’s story in a beautiful and artistic way, and I think it can be easily enjoyed by both film buffs and Princess Diana experts.


This movie is one of the most distinctive I have ever seen. It expertly uses camera angles to convey meaning, and throughout many shots creates a strong feeling of unease, almost nausea by constantly cutting between long shots and close ups constantly. The setting is extremely well done, the feeling of a British estate is maintained throughout, and the colors are distinctive and incredible looking.


Where to even begin with the music? Jonny Greenwood creates an oppressive atmosphere with layers and layers of uncomfortable jazz, a perfect accompaniment to stuffy royal dinners and spotless castle halls. It’s the kind of soundtrack that you feel in your head, rather than your heart or your stomach. Off-beat drums and cello seem to surround you, trapping you in your own head in the precise way that Princess Diana is throughout the movie.


Kristen Stewart IS Diana in this film. The way she characterizes the princess is like nothing else, and her conveyance of emotion is absolutely perfect. The queen is in the movie, and her portrayal is fine, though she is a little girlbossified. Prince Philip is really really good at being an unfeeling royal, who cares for the public image and another woman more than the woman she married.

Conclusions and Rating


This film is so, so good. An incredible watch for anyone who wants to feel awful and terrible, but in a good artsy way. This film works, and I would recommend it to anyone.