How the new movie “Spencer” brought Kristen Stewart’s Diana into focus

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Long before we saw two women in matching outfits, Pablo Larrain’s “Spencer” exudes the atmosphere of “The Shining” Walk along the corridor on the steps.Concise Kubrick symmetry, repressive environment, suffocating others, rituals and responsibilities-all these are in Lalan’s imagination of Princess Diana Christmas from hell. Then again, the moment involving the two maids was so casual, it could be nothingness, a phantom. It won’t be the only ghost lurking in the corridor of this movie.
To say that the royal family has never been so trite and understatement. Larrain’s horror film claims to be a “fable of true tragedy”, imagine spending three days at the Queen’s Sandringham Manor in 1991. The marriage of Diana and Charles is at stake, and the “company” hopes she can correct the ship at one or two Christmas feasts. Understandably, she has other ideas and is troubled by women before her (in many ways).
Kristen Stewart as Princess Diana "Spencer."

Kristen Stewart plays Princess Diana in “Spencer.” CEDIT: Claire Mason/STX Films

Diana, played by Kristen Stewart, seems to usher in a long and possibly fruitful awards season, but to achieve fairness in her performance requires careful observation by Claire Mathon. She is currently the hottest. One of the photographers.

Mason told CNN that Laland found the French cinematographer after watching her work that won the Caesar Award in “Portrait of a Lady on Fire.” In their initial conversation about “Spencer”, Mason said that the director was interested in the “bigger and (more) eternal” Christmas with the royal family: Explore the reasons behind the life-changing decision.

“He said from the beginning that this is an upside-down fairy tale. It was a princess who made the choice not to be a princess anymore,” she explained. “It’s more like a deconstruction, not about history.”

Close and personal

Mathon said that, visually, Larrain was inspired by Kubrick. She and Laren watched “Barry Linden” and a series of “A Clockwork Orange” adapted by Kubrick’s William Thackeray to prepare for “Spencer”, and they also studied era photos. But this film will not be related to historical or biographical film conventions.

Lalan’s set is “far from naturalism,” Marton said. “I think this is a well-arranged movie, where music is important. This is a movie where we often move (and) we feel a lot.”

Like “Spencer”, Mason’s films “Portrait of a Lady on Fire”, “The Atlantic” and the upcoming “Petite Mama” all feature intimate female portraits (coincidentally, they also contain supernatural elements) . However, no one made her so intimate and intimate with her subject like this.
Mathon, Stewart and Larrain are on set.

Mathon, Stewart and Larrain are on set. CEDIT: Frederick Battier/STX

Using 16mm film, Mason’s camera performed a well-designed dance with Stewart, capturing her every gesture and the world in Diana’s eyes, being ghouls (physical and fantasy) and a few trustworthy pictures Troubled by his face.

“This is Pablo’s idea, very, very close,” Mason said. “It’s not just intimacy, it’s almost inner.”

She said that some shots were improvised, some were not. Considering that the paparazzi held a camera to track the real Diana, this approach turned to meta-drama.

“I have never been so close to an actress with a camera. I was even afraid to touch her,” Mason said. “But I think her explanation was played with the camera…This is one of the themes of the movie: (Diana’s) hides and locks up the relationship between herself, and keeps appearing at the same time-too obvious. She How did she reveal herself (yes) how she stayed free.”

Diana faces the media "Spencer."

Diana faces the media in “Spencer.” CEDIT: neon

As if to bring home the subjective perspective of the movie, even if it is not a close-up, Diana is still the focus. During a distressing dinner, Mason captured the event with such a shallow depth of field that Diana’s royal family became irrelevant. Instead, our eyes were drawn to Stewart’s painful face, the soup in front of her and a pearl necklace (Diana suspects Camilla) hung around her neck like an anvil. The soundtrack of Johnny Greenwood’s jazz is incompatible with the suffocating simplicity of the room, and the claustrophobia in the movie has evolved into a wild fantasy, equally exciting and disturbing.

Mathon said this scene is one of her favorite scenes. “The music has appeared even before the scene,” she explained. “The idea of ​​the progress of this scene really came from the sumptuous candlelight dinner with the orchestra… little by little, it coordinated and transformed, becoming discordant.”

“We always run with (Diana), but the question is how to feel these appearances; the tension of (Royal) tradition. For me, visually (this) is a challenge.”

Christmas Eve dinner at Pablo Larrain's "Spencer."

Have dinner at Pablo Larrain’s “Spencer” on Christmas Eve. CEDIT: neon

Mathon is full of praise for Stewart (“Very beautiful and amazing”), her director (“I am very happy to work with Pablo”) and the film’s performance of the princess. “I really like (for her) there are so many aspects, there are some very complicated things about this character,” she said.

“At the end of the day, being close to (Diana) is a sincere thing, and in the end it’s very simple.”

“Spencer” will be released in cinemas on November 5.

Add to queue: subjective shot

watch: “Lady in the Lake” (1947)
Robert Montgomery’s “strange” adaptation of Raymond Chandler’s novel can be like any other noir at the time, except that he chose to shoot from the protagonist’s perspective and turn it into a real The first-person narrative. Montgomery also played Chandler’s famous detective Philip Marlowe. He would appear in the mirror and occasionally address the audience (MGM Studios forced him to shoot the prologue), but other than that, we were like through Marlowe. His eyes see things the same.
Kurosawa Akira’s 1950 movie starring Mifune Toshiro takes the whole plot out of subjectivity. When telling the story of rape and murder, his character tells the same story three times, and each version contradicts the next. The camera presents their evidence as facts, forcing the audience to uncover the truth from lies and deceptions. Kurosawa’s films live in the atmosphere of pop culture (and even earn the final tribute in the irony of “The Simpsons”) and continue to inspire inspiration today. This format is used in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” and this year’s He emerged in the “last duel”.
watch: “Son of Saul” (2015)

László Nemes’s tragic movie is the opposite of Montgomery’s, because the camera barely leaves the protagonist’s face. Nemes’s debut story tells the story of a Hungarian Jew in Auschwitz who was forced to dispose of the dead body and clean up the gas chamber of the concentration camp. It was filmed in a square academy ratio, forcing the audience to focus on Saul (by Géza Röhrig played) body. Shooting with close-up shots and frequent focusing, we deal with events through Saul’s reaction to the event, which shields the visual terror to a certain extent, but is not affected by its emotions.

read: “Women and Hollywood: The Rise and Fall of Women in Film” (2021)

Just as movies can view events subjectively, so can movie history. Helen O’Hara’s book brilliantly eliminates the obliteration of the pioneer women of the film, retelling the story in their name. Full of eye-opening anecdotes from the old Hollywood era, O’Hara gave these women who were marginalized by film studios and historical books a reason. Without them, we would not have the movies as we know them.

watch: “Photographer” (2016)
Kirsten Johnson made other people’s films long before she made a breakthrough with her own directing ability. Before she made “Dick Johnson is Dead,” she made “Photographer”, a documentary that recalibrated our understanding of what it means to be behind the lens. The film consists of shots from projects previously shot for other directors (Johnson operated the camera for Michael Moore and Laura Poitras) and family shots, edited into a visual memoir. Johnson questioned the ethics of recording life through the lens, and at the same time provided sufficient evidence of the profound interpersonal relationships provided by the media. This is a thoughtful and compelling declaration.

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