Show & Tell: Diane


First, most urgent (if not most important) is that the film discussion for Diane, which is scheduled for Tuesday night (tomorrow night) won’t be held until Wednesday night, May 15. This is my fault; I double-booked myself for Tuesday a long time ago, and it didn’t dawn on me until recently what I’d done. Mea culpa, and I’ll try not to make a habit of this kind of screw-up.

But no matter the day, Diane has been making a big splash among connoisseurs of independent film, and I really hope you can get there on Wednesday to talk about it.

The movie is a character study of a small-town woman who has some things in her past that continue to roil her life. She does everything she can to atone—serving her neighbors and family—but peace eludes her. That’s the set-up of the movie, and the role of Diane is played by Mary Kay Place, an actress who hasn’t really gotten the credit she deserves.

Mary Kay Place has come a long way from 1983, when she played Meg, the real-estate attorney, in The Big Chill, and the intervening 36 years are quite evident in her face. But so is every shading of emotion that moves through Diane as she tries to find a way to serve others while carving out some comfort and forgiveness for herself.

Diane is set in the Heartland or The Sticks or Small Town America, or whatever you want to call it. There’s not a touch of glam to be found. But the emotions are heartfelt and the acting is superb.

Diane is what I call a critic’s movie. Film reviewers and critics have praised the movie for its honesty, its accuracy, and its dead-on sense of the emotional reality of Diane’s world. It may take a bit of a leap of faith to come see it since it doesn’t look like a barrel of laughs and likely doesn’t have a car chase to be seen.

But if you join me this Wednesday in The Music Hall Loft, I promise you that you won’t regret it, at least not once we’ve had a chance to talk about it.

And by the way, I’m as eager as any of you to see Aretha in Amazing Grace in the Big Room. But you have until Friday for that treat (which is when I’m seeing it).

So I hope to see you in the Loft on Wednesday, and I apologize in advance if this change puts a kink in your evening.

And next Tuesday, right on its appointed day, we will be discussing Hotel Mumbai, a reality-based drama about the 2008 terrorist attack on the Taj Hotel in Mumbai, India. The movie has a great cast and a white-knuckle story to tell, and I hope you can make it.

And one last word: WEDNESDAY, this week.

Paul Goodwin