distributed by Women Make Movies
In Love & Diane, Jennifer Dworkin and her crew enter the world of a family trying to unite after years of separation, yet at the same time fighting to express their individuality and assert themselves. This emotional documentary places the audience in the middle of an environment filled with substance abuse, teen pregnancy, child neglect, poverty, HIV, depression, suicide attempts, and a bureaucracy that fails to support the people who need its assistance the most. The story focuses on the Hazzard family, specifically Diane and her daughter Love. When Love was eight-years-old she told her teacher that her mother was on drugs, causing CPS to remove Love and her siblings from her mother’s care. All of the siblings have recently been reunited with their mother and Love is now 19 and HIV positive. Diane is out of work. Love has recently given birth to a son, Donyeah, who appears to be HIV positive, although the tests are not conclusive as he still has some of his mother’s immune system mixed in with his own. After a family fight, Diane mentions to her therapist that Love has is a neglectful parent to Donyeah, and that afternoon the police arrive to take Donyeah away from Love and place him in foster care. Love suddenly finds herself in the same situation that her mother was in ten years ago. To Love, Donyeah is all that matters in the world and she must try and learn the system in order to get him back. The loss of Donyeah to foster care effects the whole family emotionally and economically as his illness granted them an extra housing credit and other benefits that they must do without if they do not regain custody. Between fighting and blaming one another, the family must learn to come together and support each other if they want to get Donyeah back, overcome their past, and move on to a brighter future.
AIDS, Foster Care, Parenting, Urban Poverty, Welfare, Documentary Studies, Family Relations, Feature Films (Documentary), Motherhood, Sociology
Hazzard, Diane. Ask Diane: Diane Answers Questions from Viewers. P.O.V. (http://www.pbs.org/pov/pov2003/loveanddiane/special_diane.html) accessed November 4, 2004.
Miller, Laura. Love & Diane. Salon.com (http://www.salon.com/ent/movies/
review/2003/04/18/love_diane/index_np.html) accessed November 4, 2004.
Smiley, Tavis Interview: Diane Hazzard and Jennifer Dworken Discuss the Documentary “Love and Diane.” N.P.R. originally broadcast April 20, 2004. (http://static.highbeam.com/t/tavissmileynpr/april202004/
interviewdianehazzardandjenniferdworkindiscussthed/) accessed November 4, 2004.
Emily Nolte 11/4/04