Say goodbye to Diane…
Random Media in association with Mean Time Productions gives you Diane, a film by Michael Mongillo and starring Jason Alan Smith and Carlee Alvers. The dark thriller Diane will open in Los Angeles September 7th at the Arena Cinelounge Sunset, followed by a launch on Cable and Digital HD, including iTunes, Amazon Instant, Google Play and Vudu, on September 17th.
Diane is the story of a wounded vet named Steve, a troubled and lonely man whose quiet routine is shaken when he discovers a dead body in his backyard. Strangely, he is compelled to take a picture of the corpse before calling the police, who then grill and harrass him constantly. As he is hounded more and more by neighbors, his world descends into a blend of the real and the unreal as Steve’s developing obsession with Diane begins to take form, haunting him with disturbing and deadly detail.
As soon as you see “In a Taylor Warren Production of a Michael Mongillo Conspiracy,” you know that A) This film will not be messing around and B) They take themselves very seriously. The strong start of Diane’s performance of her signature song, “I Won’t Go Quietly” by Celeigh Chapman and Austin Wintory, instantly hooks you. It ensures that what you are about to see will not only be creepy, but is in confident hands. Carlee Avers as Diane brings a dark vulnerability to the character and it is all laid out before you in this song. What starts as a sultry, Monroe-esque torch song morphs into her telling her story all through her eyes, ranging from brittle disappointment to heated warning, to loss.
This is a great pairing with Steve, played by Jason Alan Smith, who has seen so much loss in his life that his obsession with Diane becomes poignant and unique. He avoids loss by keeping to himself, not making friends, and taking great lengths to be left alone. When the cops begin to lay into him you feel for this singular character and he’s endearing in his complete lack of concern. He answers questions and cooperates fully, even as the police become more irate. He reacts as a man with nothing to prove, which both dishearten and infuriate the people working the case.
The time that passes only brings more Lynchian nightmares and visions for Steve. Cinematography by Anthony E. Griffin is very clear and concise, giving warm tones to the day while nights almost devoid of color except for the intense reds and blues of Steve’s episodes. Diane is taking over Steve’s mind and demanding more.
Some levity is also sprinkled throughout thanks to the aggressive town drunks, Mal and Lenny (played by Ryan Barry McCarthy and Davis Mikaels respectively.) Although they are the most obnoxious of all the characters, you recognize them as being guys in your town, the burnouts who don’t belong anywhere, and there is a charm in their banter. Either trying too hard to get a peek at the corpse or trespassing on Steve’s property, they still bring a bit of a smile to the corner of your mouth with their stupidity.
Wrapping up this review, I will say this. I see quite a few movies cross my screen and not all of them meet the mark as something I would recommend to you all. If you are not easily triggered by thing (i.e. mentions of suicide, death, PTSD) I would tell you to definitely check this out when it comes your way on your stream. With haunting imagery and intrigue brought to you by such an adept group of people, Diane is just the thing to haunt your nightmares.
Check out Diane in Los Angeles September 7th, and on your favorite streaming platforms September