There's Something Wrong with Aunt Diane (TV Movie 2011) Poster

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6/10
The journey is the thing, not the "goal"
pivic14 December 2015
This is a quite simple tale that deeply and indirectly delves into how humans are prone to denial when in the face of staggering pain. Diane was a woman who rode her car against the traffic tide, hitting an oncoming car, killing herself, all the passengers in the met vehicle and a slew of her children. As the father struggles with the deaths, the news of Diane's intoxication are released: alcohol and THC. The documentary starts just half a year after the deaths occurred. To me, what "really happened" isn't the interesting stuff, but the denial is; seeing all of the people talk is the thing. It's the journey, not the goal, whatever that would be. Interesting but not well edited; could have been better if the reins were held tighter.
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4/10
She was no saint stop trying to make her into one.
hcurrie7731 August 2019
What makes me mad is this man wants his wife to be a saint. I can accept that she made a mistake. She was a good mother, wife and daughter in law but she messed up. The more he insists she be remembered as this above reproach angel the madder people are getting. A small part of me believes this man is just a narcissist and believes he and his wife are above us. How dare we critize them.
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2/10
Are they for real?
malred15 April 2019
I found myself getting very angry watching this. What have we come to when we defend a drunk driver and someone high on top of that? Yes she probably had some good qualities, but what she did was murder and if she was alive she would be in prison today. They claim she was such a great mom, but the kids were even buckled up or in booster seats? A good mom would not do that, sorry. This is pathetic! Abscess tooth is grasping at straws. I have had an an Abcessed tooth but I would not get drunk and drive , ESPECIALLY with kids in the car!!!!! Stop defending something that was WRONG! Those poor babies!
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7/10
slow start
SnoopyStyle18 August 2013
There's a fatal traffic accident that left aunt Diane, her daughter, 3 nieces and 3 men in the other car dead. The case is revealed slowly. In fact, it's done too slowly. What went wrong? After watching so many police procedurals, it's obviously that we need the tox report but they keep holding it off. Instead, they keep going to family and friends who repeat the same sentiment. She's a great mom, and they have no idea what happened. Once we really get into it. It is a fascinating story. The family starts giving more insights. The story gets moving. However in the end, we don't really get the whole story. The movie could be a simple hour-long investigative piece that ties in with the larger drug epidemic. It's not necessary to drag this out so much.
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5/10
the family's level of denial is insane
monikamarie29 November 2020
So the medical examiner is wrong, the toxicology tests are wrong, witness statements (the nieces she ended up killing) are wrong? because some deluded husband can't admit his wife was a drunk? this whole family needs therapy.
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7/10
Hard-hitting documentary about the horrific Taconic NY State Parkway car crash
paul-allaer27 February 2019
"There Is Something Wrong With Aunt Diane" (2011 release; 103 min.) is a documentary about the horrific Taconic NY State Parkway car crash that killed 8 people. As the movie opens, we are "July 26, 2009", and we see security footage of a minivan stopping at a gas station, with a woman getting out and wanting to by OTC medication but the gas station doesn't have any. We then hear frantic 911 calls where people report a minivan driving at high speed in the wrong direction on the Taconic State Parkway, and then crash, killing the woman and 4 small children in the minivan, and the three adults in the SUV it hit head-on. Five says after the accident, the Westchester authorities which have done an autopsy, state that the woman had the alcohol equivalent of 10 drinks in her body, as well as high levels of pot. The woman's surviving husband and sister-in-law immediately start a public campaign that this is simply impossible... At this point we are 15 min. into the documentary but to tell you more of how it unfolds would spoil your viewing experience.

Couple of comments: this is the latest film from veteran and well-respected documentarian Liz Garbus ("Bobby Fischer Against the World"). Here she tackles the mystery of how a Diane, a 'normal' housewife who loves her young kids and nieces, ends up causing this horrific car crash, seemingly drunk and high (and at extreme levels no less). Garbus dissects the events of that day almost minute-by-minute, and of course interviews tons of people, nor just family members, but also experts that she engages (such as a forensic psychiatrist and an addiction psychiatrist). It all boils down to this: was the autopsy done correctly, and if so, how did she end up drunk and high? As you can well imagine, tension and emotions run high at times in such a heavily charged debate. But of course, regardless of what happened or how it happened, nothing will ever change the fact that 8 people dies that fateful day. It just leaves you shaking your head in disbelief. The documentary is a tidbit too long for its own good, but in the end it's a minor complaint.

I happened to stumble on this on HBO on Demand just the other day while looking for something good to watch. And that it certainly is, even though one cannot help but feel sorry for the families involved. Given that this documentary is now 7-8 years old, I would have loved to get a "where are they now" update on some of the prominent characters involved (Diane's husband, the young son who is the only one to survive the accident, etc.). If you are a fan of documentaries, I'd readily suggest you check this out if you get the chance.
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3/10
Pointless
teddykupferberg3 November 2019
Yeah, no idea why this was made. Garbus has done better work. Perhaps she, like the audience, assumed there would be a different outcome but, nope. Waste of time...
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1/10
Not worth the time
gsbuie24 November 2019
For me, there was no reason to make this documentary. It is clearly an open and shut case. Despite how well you know someone there is always a chance they will do something you do not expect or want to believe. Forensic tests are accurate and give results based on scientific fact. Aunt Diane was drunk and high, no judgement, just facts. This documentary does not provide any proof that can dispute those facts. The worst part of this documentary is that it has provided a forum for Diane's grief stricken family. It validates their irrational, grief influenced beliefs and I'm sorry for them.
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6/10
This was way too long
ilovemoovies27 May 2017
This should have been about an hour. What this film comes down to is one more test to see if Diane was drunk or not when she fatally killed 8 people with her van.

There is many victims of this car accident. Diane's husband is also a victim. His wife died as well as daughters. He is now a single father. He believes his wife's autopsy report was wrong. The report says her blood alcohol was .19. You are legally drunk .08 and above!

Now my opinion about this woman was that since her husband and herself worked opposite shifts he did not know she was heavy drinker. To this day I am sure he doesn't think she was but trust me .19 meant she was most likely not a "Casual Drinker".

With that being said I do feel bad for him. We learn in this documentary that he is still struggling with loss. WE also see he is now a victim of internet bullying. People should leave him alone.

This is worth watching however this entire would have been more effective if they had edited it down. Many of the same things get repeated by the same people.
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6/10
Less of a mystery than it is a reflection on grief
wkbhss15 May 2021
The most poignant part of this film for me was when the sister-in-law - who adamantly insists she would know if Diane had a drug or alcohol problem - smokes a cigarette and then jokes to the cameraman about how no one in her family knows she smokes...
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7/10
Revealing Documentary...
shaneizoid10 May 2020
Certainly a revealing Documentary but unlike other such movies, it's probably more revealing about the viewers own intuitions or feelings than ultimately the subjects. A tragedy is investigated from all angles. Hard to watch at times but a very well put together piece.
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7/10
Family denial at it's finest
meghanjohns-008499 May 2021
What an incredible display of family denial. They repeatedly discuss how Diane was private and didn't let anyone know what's going on. Then can't accept the fact that she most likely hid her drug and alcohol abuse. Wow. Very frustrating story. So sad for the victims.
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8/10
Was she ever checked for auto brewery syndrome?
bitch-444605 February 2020
Never heard of this, and sounded made up to me until my daughter was gonna be checked for it due to her excessive migraines. The body (not born with it) later in life starts "brewing" starches and sugars making the person feel and test as being drunk! I can't believe this was never even mentioned (that I heard anyway) when family was positive she wasn't an alcoholic!
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10/10
Makes you think
trueblucanadian30 December 2021
A haunting doc that leaves you with a sorrow for the dead . It leaves a lot of unanswered questions. It leaves you angry at the possibility that hidden alcohol or drug abuse brought this on.
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10/10
I found the possible reason this happened
scoulter_7527 December 2019
I watched this movie months ago or maybe a year and it stuck with me. Her family faught so hard it was hard to believe they were wrong. I was watching Dr. OZ just now it's about a disease called "auto brew syndrome" it's season 11 episode 73 Medical Mystery. After watching I thought of this documentary and I'm trying to see if the family caught onto this and could have her tested... this could be the actual answer.
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10/10
accidents happen people
doggie-2438430 September 2017
accidents happen, sounds like this lady stopped at MacDonalds bit down on the bad tooth, was in terrible pain, and drank and smoked some pt to help relive the bad pain she was in not realizing what it was going to do to her.

Jay Schuler seems like a really special person, nice lady for sure
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2/10
Dragged
tonybrennan-044819 April 2020
Very poorly made film. Was there even an editor working on this project? Shoiuld have been shorter and more focused.
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1/10
Distasteful in every sense of the word
rocarocatg24 January 2020
A few years ago a close friend of mine was killed by a drunk driver. This documentary really hits home for me. I cannot imagine a reason anyone would make a documentary trying to portray this person who killed my friend as a saint. This film tries to do almost exactly that. The only difference is this woman killed 7 innocent people. I went in with an open mind thinking there was going to be some exculpatory evidence that proves this woman wasnt a drunk murderer. I was wrong. Instead this film goes to extraordinary lengths to portray her as a saint. Diving into her childhood and talking with several of her highschool and adult friends who all say what an amazing woman she was. She had a bac of almost .20 and a high level of thc while driving with several kids in the car and killed everyone in the other car she hit. She had a freaking bottle of vodka in the car but the family refuses to admit she was drinking. She was not a saint, she was not a good parent, she wasnt a good person and no amount of interviews with family saying otherwise will change that. This film should not have been made and if the director needed to tell this story, it should have focused on the innocent lives lost. Not the selfish POS that took them.
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5/10
Pointless
Benukra25 July 2019
I really didnt get the point of making this. Love is blind.
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1/10
ZOOM OUT!
pmgaynor-3029729 March 2020
This documentary's story is frustrating as it is but the way the entire thing was shot makes this unwatchable. It is zoomed so far in that the entire screen fills up with chin to forehead. Do not watch.
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7/10
Stairway to Heaven during the credits
Chuck4Ever27 September 2020
It's understandable that musical composers would be inspired to draw inspiration from Stairway to Heaven. It's a beautiful and haunting song. You can hear its influence during the closing credits - especially starting where they list the name of the cinematographer.

I did like this movie. Such a tragic story, though! I daresay that I learned more about the broader issues that might have applied from the critics' reviews and responses to them.
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