Film & TV

Film Review: Diana’s Wedding

A couple’s roller-coaster marriage is seen through the eyes of their daughter Diana

It is July 29th 1981. Most of the world is glued to the television watching HRH The Prince of Wales marry The Lady Diana Spencer. Meanwhile, in the canteen of a factory in Norway, another couple is tying the knot. Liv and Terje are young, in love, and already have a baby daughter named, unsurprisingly, Diana.

Over the years we see them make a home, befriend their crazy neighbours, and have another child, Cato. All the while, events in the HRH Diana’s life act as bookmarks to Live and Terje’s relationship. As their daughter Diana starts to grow, she witnesses the crazy fights her two passionate parents engage in, despite the fact that they remain madly in love.

Diana’s Wedding is only the second feature from writer/director Charlotte Blom, her first being Staying Alive in 2015. This quirky comedy is full of truth about relationships, and beautiful observations about family, love, and life in all its messy glory.

Marie Blokhus as Liv and Pål Sverre Hagen as Terje deliver a volatile chemistry that is a joy to watch. These rounded characters are at once infuriating and irresistible. The screenplay by Blom and Mette M. Bølstad (Sonja: The White Swan) gives the actors plenty of great material to play with. Also joining in the fun are Jannike Kruse and Olav Waastad as neighbours Unni and Olav who have marital issues of their own. Kruse in particular shows the breadth of her comedic abilities in this complex role, at-times pathetic, and at-times hilarious.

Audiences will recognize many moments in this film: moments between couples, between siblings, between friends, and within that most frustrating of human constructs, the family. Diana’s Wedding contains scenes that are laugh-out-loud funny, others that are cringefully recognizable, and some that are unexpectedly moving. And each of these sits on a foundation of warmth, intelligent scripting, and brilliantly observed direction. This is an absolute charmer.

Diana’s Wedding opens at selected cinemas from September 23rd.

intelligent, warm, and very funny 4 stars

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