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Diane (2017)

Diane (2017)

Jason Alan SmithCarlee AversMargaret Rose ChampagneDick Boland
Michael Mongillo


Diane (2017) is a English movie. Michael Mongillo has directed this movie. Jason Alan Smith,Carlee Avers,Margaret Rose Champagne,Dick Boland are the starring of this movie. It was released in 2017. Diane (2017) is considered one of the best Crime,Drama,Horror,Mystery,Thriller movie in India and around the world.

When a disabled war veteran discovers the dead body of a beautiful singer in his back yard, his fascination with her photographic image soon turns to obsession.

Diane (2017) Reviews

  • Unpolished little gem


    The movie feels uncomfortable from the beginning, with a lead performance that will irritate some people. Which was meant to do exactly that. You have a story unraveling in front of your eyes that dares to go a different route, be it from a story stand point but also visually speaking. And while not without flaws (that's the unpolished part), it's still refreshing to see something different. Obviously there are budget restrictions, which make themselves visible (visually speaking that is, production wise). But that does not take anything from the movie unless you let it. So try not to focus on the apparent and unavoidable downsides, but watch it for what it is. If you have even a little bit of love for independent cinema, you will find this entertaining and suspenseful enough

  • The kind of discovery that "won't go quietly" and feeds one's love of films.


    I like to put it this way: "It's a Mongillo!" You see, the great thing about "a Mongillo," or as the film credits would read "A Mongillo Conspiracy," is that you can't pin his work down. His works are never the same type of thing and no matter the genre, you can't predict the outcome (meaning, you can't guess how the film will end). And as always, great music to suit the creation. That's why I'm rating DIANE a 10. Sure, indie projects may not have the slickness of big budget studio productions, but the rough edges actually give the film a more raw feeling that draw me in. You don't have to be a product of Big Hollywood to rate a 10. I was fully entertained and invested in the story. I cared about where the direction could possibly go. For me that's a sign of a successful project. The film opens with what appears to be a sultry lounge performance by Diane that would have made the management of The Slow Club proud (you know the place, it's a Lynchian thing). It's a nice song, yet something doesn't feel right. Just a tad uncomfortable. "I won't go quietly," she sings. The colors are deep and warm. Then BAM. It's like someone goes to the window, opens the curtains, and you get a blast of light when you're not fully awake yet. The instant saturated visuals jolt you into sitting up and demanding your full attention. Get as comfortable as you can, because you can't shade your eyes for the next hour and 20 minutes. I liked that. Once again, I know I'm going to be surprised. Because, well, "It's a Mongillo!" Disabled war vet Steve (Jason Alan Smith) pretty much keeps to himself, tinkering with and fixing gadgets like generators for extra money. At first he appears the quiet introspective type, sometimes not so easy to befriend. We learn he's been through enough and seen enough during his tour of duty, leaving him not so social. So, what to do when he finds the dead body of a local singer named DIANE (Carlee Avers) in his back yard? First thing Steve does is take a picture of her with his phone (now there's a thing I'd never thought I'd ever say in my life "take a picture with his phone," that seemed so sci-fi when I was young). I didn't think anything of that, figuring he'd taken the picture to show the cops exactly how he found her. But this is a film, and you know that this action will be an important factor to the story. Throughout the film Steve experiences nightmares and hallucinations -- or are they? -- while other characters add to the mystery. A bully of a neighbor and his equally jerky friend, along with a two mean-spirited detectives not only make Steve's life more inconvenient, but also help to bring more clues to solving what happened to Diane. Detective Phillips and Bernard (Margaret Rose Champagne and Dick Boland) sure do seem harsh to Steve, but then I thought back to an incident nearly 30 years ago where I was dragged into an investigation (of a stolen VCR!) and had two detectives sneering and talking the way Phillips and Bernard were. It was all for naught of course, they just figured because I looked like a hippie and they had nothing else to go on, by interrogating me they looked like they were busy guys. I actually sat and laughed while they threw a manila folder on the table marked "Todd -- Robbery" and it was obviously overstuffed with blank typing paper. But they were so dramatic. So trust me, the way these detectives go at it in DIANE is not an exaggeration. I thoroughly enjoyed the interactions, particularly when one of the detectives said Steve must be pretty cozy with his life, inheriting his house and getting disability checks. Steve simply stated how it took the loss of his parents and the use of his leg to be that cozy. Smooth! And despite Steve's lack of positivity, Jason Smith delivers the lines and tone just right. We learn quite a lot more about Diane as well, toying with our perceptions of what and who you expect her to be. I've been asked is it "theatre-worthy" and worthy of my really high rating though it has a low budget. Just because a film may have budget limitations, that doesn't mean the film will look strongly flawed nor does it mean it won't have an engaging story. Of course each person will vary in opinion. Just this past year alone I was amazed at how another director/writer/actor Daniel Falicki managed to come up with some deep philosophical work and ideas within his micro-budgeted films ACCIDENTAL EXORCIST and THE LAST VAMPYRE. And I mean very micro-budgeted, but the films held my rapt attention. DIANE grabbed my interest; I wanted to know who this woman was and just what the hell was going on with Steve. All the little parts do add up nicely. If I were Steve, I would not have done what he does at the end but that just says something about ME and my own sense of survival. So again, I was pleased to see they went with something I had not expected. Of course they did, because "It's a Mongillo!"

  • PTSD by way of spectral ghost story


    The war in Afghanistan has left scars on Steve - physical and emotional ones. He never really returns home, as every day is just a series of repetitive tasks and drinking himself to a fitful slumber. But when the corpse of a gorgeous singer - Diane - shows up in his backyard, he does something strange before calling the police. He takes her photo. Soon, Steve can only think of the dead woman. The rest of his life is a shambles - attacked by neighbors who think he's the killer, hounded by the police and even visited by Diane's husband. There's only one good thing in his life - he's now haunted by a woman who he can't ever remember meeting. Jason Alan Smith, who appeared on FX's Feud and in the movie Before I Wake, has to carry nearly this entire movie as Steve. A majority of the film is him speaking directly to the camera or going through the motions of his ruined life. He's the best actor in it, which is a good thing, because it's one hell of a challenge. I really liked how the closer Steve gets to Diane's ghost, the more he changes. He no longer needs a cane to walk and he can easily best the neighborhood toughs. He's found something to care about again. Director/writer/director Michael Mongillo (Being Michael Madsen) set the bar high here. Probably higher than the budget would allow, but there are flourishes of style that make this movie stand out. I love the prelude of Diane singing before the title is revealed. And the video effects as Steve battles her spirit near the end of the film are really inventive. Carlee Avers is interesting as Diane. Most of her role calls for her to look alluring and she easily handles that, but there are some nice moments where her gorgeous veneer is cracked and she speaks honestly of the waste she's made of her life. At least Steve had the war - all she has are dreams unfulfilled. Soon, Steve has turned the crime scene into a shrine and Diane into someone he alternately worships, desires and fears. And the ending can only be a tragedy, right? Diane is an interesting noir-ish film. The press kit has a review that describes it as "Jacob's Ladder meets Memento," which is pretty close. I just wish that all of the actors in the film were as solid as the leads. Some of the cop dialogue felt really forced, as did the bullying kids that fight Steve and the people he works with. While there were times of brilliance when it comes to shot choice and lighting, there are many times when the film looks flat. However, I found more to enjoy than dismiss here. I'm interested to see what Mongillo, Smith and Avers do next.

  • Well Worth the Watch


    Filmmaker Michael Mongillo had me, originally, at Being Michael Madsen, his 2007 satire/mockumentary that featured Michael and Virginia Madsen, Daryl Hannah, David Carradine, Harry Dean Stanton and Lacey Chabert. What the? How did this unknown cat get these players into his game? Don't know, but the film is righteously entertaining and had me keeping an eye out for Michael's work in the future. Enter Diane. A totally different approach to storytelling than Being Michael Madsen, this is a crime drama with horror elements that tells the story of a disabled vet named Steve that becomes obsessed with a local singer, Diane, who's dead body he discovers in his backyard. What gripped me here was the unfolding of the crime, who perpetrated it and Steve's descent into the truth accompanied by the ghosts of both his own guilt and, of course, Diane herself. Knock this one out with an eye to an indie filmmaker not afraid to put his heart and vision out there with compelling story lines and actors while building a canon of work soon leading up to an established career of great films and, most importantly, our entertainment.

  • Not bad, but one glaring fatal flaw


    This film wasn't bad at all. Performances were good, plot kept me guessing, lots of mystery. I especially liked the detective characters. But - SPOILER - the film goes out of its way to eliminate the possibility of texting, cell phone contact, or other incriminating 21st century technologies to prevent the police from catching on. Diane specifically tells Steve not to call her, text her, or contact her in any other way - thereby keeping their secret, and (plot element!) preventing anyone from catching them. The detectives even make a point of stating that cell phone records show no calls or texts between Steve and Diane. The problem is that their CELL PHONES THEMSELVES would give them away. If Diane and Steve spent so many afternoons together in Diane's "secret house", then a simple cell phone location search would reveal this within an hour. Law enforcement uses phone location tracking every day to nail criminals and their cohorts. This one shortcoming shoots a giant logic hole in the plot.


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