Joe Dante on

The Stranger


Posing as a college professor in a small Connecticut town, a Nazi war criminal plots all manner of perfidy under the unsuspecting eyes of his bride-to-be. Orson Welles’ work-for-hire thriller was aimed at proving he could make a mainstream Hollywood movie. Widely considered a second-tier title, it’s actually quite Wellesian in its anti-Fascist concerns and works very well on a conventional thriller level despite the usual post-production alterations. Here’s F.X. Feeney on Welles and The Stranger.

About Joe Dante

Joe Dante is a lifelong film buff who turned his obsession into a career.  He got his start cutting trailers for Roger Corman and later directed the hit movie Gremlins, as well as Gremlins 2: The New Batch, for producer Steven Spielberg. His feature films include The Howling, Innerspace, Matinee, Small Soldiers, The ‘burbs and the 3-D thriller titled The Hole, first winner of the 3D Persol Award at the Venice Film Festival. His TV directing work includes:  the HBO film, The Second Civil War, the “Masters of Horrors” titles,  Homecoming and The Screwfly Solution, episodes of Eerie, Indiana , which he was in on the creation of, as well as episodes of CSI: NY, Hawaii 5-0 and Salem. His latest feature, the zom-com Burying the Ex, is currently available on VOD.