News / Arts & Entertainment

    Critics Savage 'Cheap and Cheerless' Diana Film as Tawdry Soap

    Cast member Naomi Watts of Australia, who plays the title role, signs autographs before the world premiere of "Diana" at Leicester Square in London, Sept. 5, 2013.
    Cast member Naomi Watts of Australia, who plays the title role, signs autographs before the world premiere of "Diana" at Leicester Square in London, Sept. 5, 2013.
    Reuters
    Film critics have savaged a new movie of the late British Princess Diana's relationship with a Pakistani doctor as an intrusive and embarrassingly cheap soap opera.

    British-born Australian actress Naomi Watts plays the jilted princess trapped in a gilded cage. English actor Naveen Andrews is heart surgeon Hasnat Khan, who gives her the love she craves in Diana, which held its world premiere in London on Thursday.

    The British tabloids - which followed every twist and turn from Diana's 1981 marriage to Prince Charles, to their divorce and her death in a 1997 Paris car crash - were scathing about the film from German director Oliver Hirschbiegel.

    The Queen of Hearts has been recast as a sad-sack singleton that even Bridget Jones would cross the street to avoid,” wrote the Mirror's David Edwards in a one-star review dubbing the film a “cheap and cheerless effort”.


    The movie is based on Diana: Her Last Love, a book by author Kate Snell published in 2000, which argues that the estranged wife of the heir to the British throne had a clandestine affair with Khan in the last two years of her life.

    Diana focuses on the vignettes of their assignations in hospitals, cars, his flat and Kensington Palace, interspersed with the public Diana campaigning against landmines and giving her infamous 1995 interview about her relationship with Charles in which she said there were “three of us in this marriage”.

    The Diana character tells Khan on their first “date” that she loves television soap operas and some of the movie scenes, including their final break-up in a London park in the middle of night could be straight out of one.

    The dialog, which includes Persian poetry and lines such as “Now that I have been loved, I don't feel lonely anymore”, has been met with a spate of one-star reviews.

    “Even when these lines are delivered by the fragrant Naomi Watts, doing her level best with a squirmingly embarrassing script, this film is still atrocious and intrusive,” wrote Kate Muir in the Times newspaper.

    Cast member Naveen Andrews, who plays the role of Dr. Hasnat Khan, arrives for the world premiere of "Diana" at Leicester Square in London, Sept. 5, 2013.
    Cast member Naveen Andrews, who plays the role of Dr. Hasnat Khan, arrives for the world premiere of "Diana" at Leicester Square in London, Sept. 5, 2013.
    Memories

    The world's press continue to rake over Diana's life 16 years after she died, with British tabloids this week screaming about a conspiracy theory involving the special forces and a royal cousin calling Diana “spiteful” in Vanity Fair.
    The real-life Hasnat Khan vowed in August he would never watch the film, saying it is all based on hypotheses and gossip.

    Watts told Reuters from a thinly attended red carpet that she was concerned about what Diana's sons, Princes William and Harry, might think of the film if they were to see it.

    “If they do I hope they feel that we have been respectful and upheld her memories in the best possible way,” she told Reuters Television.

    Majesty magazine Managing Editor Joe Little told Reuters the royal family would continue to maintain a dignified silence that has surrounded Diana since a 2007 tribute concert.

    “You could regard it as another hijacking of her memory,” he said. “All they can do is shrug their shoulders and not comment.”

    Director Oliver Hirschbiegel reacts before the world premiere of "Diana" at Leicester Square in London, Sept. 5, 2013.
    Director Oliver Hirschbiegel reacts before the world premiere of "Diana" at Leicester Square in London, Sept. 5, 2013.

    Hirschbiegel, who made the Oscar nominated Downfall about the last days of Hitler, compared Diana to 1953's romantic comedy Roman Holiday and 1965 epic drama Dr. Zhivago.

    “'Brief Encounter' I think is very close ... there is a love there that can't be lived and yet they love each other so much,” he told Reuters.

    But the Guardian's Peter Bradshaw's review was a lot less lofty.

    “The awful truth is that, 16 years after that terrible day in 1997, Diana has died another awful death.”

    You May Like

    Video Democrats Clinton, Kaine Offer 'Very Different Vision' Than Trump

    In a jab at Trump, Clinton says her team wants to 'build bridges, not walls'; Obama Hails Kaine's record; Trump calls Kaine a 'job-killer'

    Turkey Wants Pakistan to Close Down institutions, Businesses Linked to Gulen

    Thousands of Pakistani students are enrolled in Gulen's commercial network of around two dozen institutions operating in Pakistan for over two decades

    AU Passport A Work in Progress

    Who will get the passport and what the benefits are still need to be worked out

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movementi
    X
    July 22, 2016 11:49 AM
    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora

    New in Music Alley

    Take It From The Top: Stanley Jordani
    || 0:00:00
    ...  
     
    X
    May 17, 2016 5:01 PM
    Jazz fusion artist, Stanley Jordan is known for his touch technique which allows him to play melodies and chords simultaneously. He can also play two different guitars or a guitar and piano at the same time.

    Jazz fusion artist, Stanley Jordan is known for his touch technique which allows him to play melodies and chords simultaneously.  He can also play two different guitars or a guitar and piano at the same time.