Legacy of a Princess Through the Screen

Legacy of a Princess Through the Screen

Many Princess Diana fans are excited about the new “Spencer” movie that came out on November 5th, 2021. The misconception was that it would be a documentary on her life, when in fact it was a movie about a Christmas weekend Diana experienced at the Royal family’s Sandringham House.

The movie depicts Diana’s struggle in the aftermath of finding out about the affair her husband Charles, the Prince of Wales, was having with Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall. She goes on an emotional journey as multiple stressors in her life affect her mood drastically. 

However, when a real life story gets a film adaptation, the story is bound to be altered a bit, while also including events that actually happen. The actor that really sealed the deal ont he movie was Kristen Stewart. “Her role as Diana fit really well. Her acting skills have definitely improved.” says senior Katie Eisenberg.

One aspect the movie focuses on is Charles gifting Diana and Camilla the same piece of jewelry for Christmas. This did actually happen and the film explores Diana’s anger and sadness over it. There are several scenes in which the pearls are a main factor. At a classy dinner, Diana has a vision in which she rips the pearls from her neck and they drop into her soup. She eats the soup as a form of self-punishment, rushing to the bathroom to throw up. “That scene affected me so much. I felt so bad for her,” senior Camille Bertet admitted.

In another scene, Diana is in her childhood home, Park House, at the top of a staircase, tempted to end her life when she rips off the pearls and they scatter and bounce down the stairs. This represents her breaking free from Charles, excommunicating him from her life. 

The pearls are major symbolism for Diana’s struggle to cope with being cheated on. She resorts to leaving her curtains open for the paparazzi, injuring herself with a plier, and hurling up the meals she is served into the toilet. “I think these coping mechanisms really showed the reality of her depression. It wasn’t a pretty thing,” stayed senior Katie Eisenberg. 

Another realistic aspect of the film is Diana’s bulimia. As aforementioned, she had a habit of consuming copious amounts of food then making herself empty it all out. This also relates to her unhappy marriage with Prince Charles. 

Diana, not in the movie but in real life, confessed that he triggered her eating disorder by saying “Oh, a bit chubby here, aren’t we?” when he touched her waist. It made her insecure, especially in light of Charles’ affair with Camilla. She felt inadequate after being insulted and cheated on and her body paid the price.

A witness to Diana’s emotional journey is her dresser, Maggie. Maggie confesses to Diana that she’s in love with her, shocking both the princess and the audience. It was something no one saw coming.

Maggie confesses to remind Diana that she is loved so much more than she knows and should stop treating herself badly. Sadly, there is no evidence that this was a real occurrence. Watchers can presume that this added in to move the film’s story along and surprise the audience. 

The most heartwarming aspect of the film was her relationship with her two sons. Diana makes it abundantly clear that she is unhappy with her stay at the Sandringham house but endures it for her boys to enjoy Christmas with the family.

In a final scene, she stops her husband Charles from forcing the boys to shoot birds. They drive off together and get fast food, Diana giving her name as ‘Spencer’ on the order. This shows that she has grown as a person and taken back her identity. She’s not just Charles’ princess, she’s Diana Spencer, an influential and inspiring woman who left an ever-lasting legacy.