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Diana (2013)

 
 

The Doctor and the Princess

Naomi Watts in Diana (2013)

With her marriage over as she leads a separate life from her husband the Princess of Wales, Diana (Naomi Watts) is still living her life under the constant scrutiny of the press. After receiving a distressed call from a friend at Brompton Hospital, Diana heads there and is met with all the usual tongue tied people who greet her with the typical heirs and graces. But she also meets heart surgeon Dr. Hasnat Khan (Naveen Andrews) who doesn't treat her in the same way as others, speaking to her like she was just a normal person which leads to her becoming interested in him.

I have always said when an actor takes on playing someone who is instantly recognizable they are typically fighting a losing battle and so it either takes someone incredibly brave or insane to take on someone as recognizable as Diana, The Princess of Wales. As such I am sorry but Naomi Watts didn't do it for me, yes she leans her head to one side and looks out from below that fringe as Diana did but she didn't convince me. And I get a feeling that she didn't full convince director Oliver Hirschbiegel either because if she had there wouldn't be need for scenes which emphasise that parts of Scott that are similar such as a close up of her eyes or a rear view of her walking around in white trousers.

Naveen Andrews in Diana (2013)

But in fairness "Diana" isn't about whether or not Naomi Watts is convincing as Diana, it is about the final two years of her life and her relationship with Dr. Hasnat Khan. Unfortunately rather than being a dramatic account of Diana's life in those two years this becomes a romantic drama with moments of comedy. When Diana sneaks Hasnat into her home in the back seat of her car under a blanket the officers on the gate spot the car is riding low and remark it's too heavy to be a bomb and must be a certain Pakistani doctor. If that scene makes you smile there is a good chance you will enjoy "Diana" but for me it was as naff as much as the rest of the movie was.

Now in fairness in trying to recreate elements of Diana's life there are some powerful scenes, none more so when she visits victims of those who have been injured due to land mines. But then you will have scenes of Diana sitting in her room waiting for the Doctor to ring, her many phones lines up, is too cheesy as is a scene of Diana in a dark wig walking through the streets in a cocktail dress. It is for me a case that in trying to play up the relationship of Diana and Hasnat and what they got up to as she tried to experience a non royal life it makes the whole thing a bit too cheesy.

What this all boils down to is that "Diana" didn't work for me and ended up a movie full of wrong decisions. Maybe those who are more romantically inclined than myself and love the idea that Diana led a very secret and normal life might find it a lot more entertaining than I did.

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