The opening scene of the movie is a powerful one – you get the chance to see what the last night of her life might have looked like. By what can be seen on the screen, one cannot but wonder – did she actually know the end is near that night in Paris?
However, before deciding that for yourself, you’ll need to watch the whole story first.
Soon after the chilling elevator scene, the movie goes back in the past, somewhere around the point when her marriage with Prince Charles starts falling apart. Swarmed by a sea of paparazzi, you can see a smiling Diana sitting in the back of a car, speeding away from a life she might have never even wanted in the first place.
But no matter how hard her own circumstances were, she had never been short on her desire to help others. Being rushed to the emergency room for a completely different reason, she soon finds herself in an elevator with Hasnat Khan, the Pakistani heart surgeon she meets moments before. Indeed, in life, everything happens for a reason. In a heartwarming scene, you witness Hasnat Khan holding the elevator door for her – did really Princess Diana get lost in a hospital?
Shortly afterward, you get to the part with her confession: the Princess is actually ‘fascinated by hospitals’ because it’s a place where she feels she can really make a change. Hasnat Khan, who seems strangely unalarmed by her presence, is offering her a tour of the hospital.
More than pleased with the proposal, Diana offers him her number – or better said, one of her four numbers. After all, she’s just a regular human being even though she has four phone numbers, right? However, judging by the looks both of them get while walking through the hospital, Hasnat Khan is one of the rare individuals treating her the way in which she’d always wanted to be treated.
Soon after, the two of them have dinner. While doing the dinner preparations, Diana admits that actually, she enjoys his company exactly because of that – because he doesn’t behave around her as other do around a princess. In fact, quite the opposite happens: he treats her almost as if ‘he doesn’t know’ who she is!
Welcoming the much-appreciated change of behavior, the two of them start seeing each other in secret. Always on the lookout from the annoying paparazzi, you get to see the lengths Diana had to go to for regular things many take for granted, such as a night out – who would have thought that princesses sometimes may need to completely transform their looks just to be left alone for a few hours?
A good thing about the movie is that the plot doesn’t only revolve around their blooming relationship. As the story follows the development of their romance, you’ll also get to see the another part Diana deeply cared about – helping others around the world.
Something she truly cared about is the removal of landmines in countries and places affected by war. In a touching scene, you see Diana giving an interview alongside a child crippled by mines. Then, Diana bravely walks through a field that had been full of mines just mere three weeks ago and she walks through it all by herself. Surrounded by press officials, she proudly finishes the walk – she simply had to ‘do it by herself’ so reporters wouldn’t belittle her further on.
The plot of the movie also tells of some major public events she attended during that two-year period, where she gave her famous speech about fighting the bad in the world by getting the good people to do good deeds. Though it may seem unrelated, there’s some special attention put on the particular clothing choices she’s made – all of her famous looks have been recreated as to honor her fabulous fashion taste.
However, love sometimes isn’t as simple as the two main characters of the movie wanted to hope for. Hasnat Khan and Diana soon realize it could be next to impossible to keep their love relationship as they’d want it – private.
In an argument shown on screen, Hasnat Khan tells her it’d be simply impossible for her to live the dream she’d always dreamed of – living in peace, surrounded by children. How can a princess dare to ask for mortal things like that? A marriage between the two of them would never work the way they’d wanted it to work – after all, Diana is a princess! Breaking her heart, he almost tearfully admits that if he marries her, he’d also have to marry the world!
Knowing the lengths the two of them went to keep their relationship private, admitting it in front of the whole world seems like too hard of a task for the two lovers. Even though he claims that this isn’t a goodbye and ‘he can’t stop loving her’, it may be hard to believe love conquers all at that exact moment – Diana tells him all men biding her farewell say the same things, except Charles.
Right there is where you get to see the true greatness of her character – even in moments of great pain and loss, she manages to find some humor. Indeed, rare are the people who are able to do that.
After their split up, in an attempt to make Hasnat jealous, Diana soon starts seeing a different man – Dodi Fayed, a son of an Egyptian millionaire. The two of them spend some time on his father’s yacht, somewhere along the French coast – a place she hopes can give her some much-needed privacy.
As fate would like it, that doesn’t happen – the paparazzi manage to track her down. In those moments on screen, you get to understand just how popular she really was and what the press was willing to do as to get an insight into her private life.
Soon after, pictures of her kissing Dodi Fayed dawn on major newspapers’ front pages, one of the most scandalous events in her life. One may even wonder – did she do that on purpose knowing someone she deeply cares about would see them? A couple of scenes later, you’ll get to see deeply saddened Hasnat looking at those same pictures.
At one point, Diana tries calling Hasnat but he doesn’t seem to care to answer back. Or is the opposite happening – does he care too much, in the first place? With the movie wrapping up, he’s shown sitting with the phone in his hand while Diana is having dinner in Paris with Dodi.
Soon after, you realize you’ve come all the way back to the beginning of the movie – or better said, the end of it. Even though it’s not shown on screen, it’s very clear that the terrible car crash in Paris took place after Diana and Dodi left the hotel.
The favorite princess of the world is no longer alive – it’s up to the viewers to imagine the tragic events that follow her death. No funeral scenes are included in the movie nor any further explanation as to what happened is given.
In the final scenes, Hasnat Khan is seen walking alone among crying crowds, obviously distressed. The gentle voice of Diana is heard narrating the movie to an end, gently talking to him: somewhere beyond right and wrong, there’s a garden. I will meet you there.