Five Favorite Films

Five Favorite Films with Joe Dante

The director of The Hole shares a handful of films that have impacted him.

by | October 22, 2012 | Comments

Joe Dante‘s movies root themselves into your psyche and refuse to let go. Those little guys with eating restrictions (Gremlins), watching movies during a national crisis (Matinee), having creepy neighbors (The ‘Burbs), and accidentally getting shrunk down and injected into someone (Innerspace) remain some of the most memorable of all time. It shouldn’t come as any surprise that his latest film, The Hole, is pretty much for kids, just not the ones who are faint of heart.

Here are the great films that inspired this fantastic filmmaker. Watching them is kind of like going to film school for free. You can send Joe a thank you card.

Touch of Evil (Orson Welles, 1958; 95% Tomatometer)

This mesmerizingly brilliant film noir was Orson Welles’ last Hollywood movie. Dumped into second feature playdates, it’s finally become more popular than Citizen Kane. It was recut and reshot by the studio but a longer preview version surfaced a few years ago and is preferable to the well-meaning but bogus “reconstruction” edit which seems to be the extant version. Both are available on the dvd box set.

The Ballad of Cable Hogue (Sam Peckinpah, 1970; 92% Tomatometer)

Sam Peckinpah followed The Wild Bunch with a deeply personal, lyrical western love story which was promptly buried by its distributor. Its failure to find an audience nearly caused the director to abandon westerns altogether, but over the years its reputation has grown and it stands as one of Peckinpah’s finest.

The Bride of Frankenstein (James Whale, 1935, 100% Tomatometer)

One of the premier examples of a sequel that bests the original. Director James Whale received carte blanche to make this quirky, stylish and mordantly funny follow up to what was probably the greatest horror film of its day. The amped-up creation scene is still one of the genre’s most memorable.

The Black Book (Anthony Mann, 1949; N/A Tomatometer)

Originally issued as Reign of Terror, Anthony Mann’s Classics-Illustrated-meets-film-noir treatment of the French revolution is one of the most striking low budget period pieces to come from Hollywood, abetted by graphic b/w imagery from the great d.p. John Alton and striking production design from the always reliable William Cameron Menzies. Plus it’s witty moves like lightning.

Once Upon a Time in the West (Sergio Leone, 1968; 98% Tomatometer)

Sergio Leone cashed in his Dollars chips to make the Euro western to end them all. Thematically rich and generally regarded as the greatest spaghetti western of them all, brilliantly choreographed to Ennio Morricone’s unforgettable music. Impressive set-pieces abound and, combined with iconic casting and eye-filling US locations, mark this as a dreamscape of an Old West about to be invaded by “progress”.

The Hole is in theaters and concurrently available on home video now.

Tag Cloud

2015 Super Bowl History Star Wars NBC zombie The CW Countdown Sci-Fi Comedy Central Crackle harry potter TLC travel Awards singing competition YA cooking Premiere Dates APB Mary Tyler Moore social media sitcom CBS biography OWN technology American Society of Cinematographers Fantasy Oscars crime TV Land Trivia E! TCA serial killer thriller Box Office The Arrangement GoT DC Comics TIFF Sundance MTV LGBTQ FX Animation Comic Book Warner Bros. CMT BBC Watching Series Cartoon Network medical drama Spring TV Video Games historical drama politics Disney President CBS All Access Year in Review Nat Geo Nominations AMC TV ABC Musicals TCM E3 RT History Music Winter TV Rom-Com Set visit Horror docudrama political drama sports Cosplay WGN Ellie Kemper FOX Mystery Infographic transformers Disney Channel GLAAD Best and Worst binge aliens Syfy dc Comedy comiccon GIFs Masterpiece Interview CNN crime thriller Election supernatural Rocky Lionsgate BET IFC Pirates BBC America Martial Arts Certified Fresh boxoffice Red Carpet Extras justice league Ghostbusters Fall TV Lifetime USA Starz Reality 2016 Summer 007 psycho PBS Opinion TruTV Grammys Trailer Star Trek PaleyFest VICE cops discovery DC Universe Pop 24 frames Musical ABC Family composers ESPN Sneak Peek dramedy Freeform vampires Polls and Games Mindy Kaling Teen Tomatazos TNT FXX war Reality Competition A&E Marathons romance Paramount Marvel NYCC diversity Dark Horse Comics TCA 2017 Western police drama TBS Bravo cinemax Winners Calendar Superheroes Toys Logo adventure what to watch dceu Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Thanksgiving X-Men Esquire VH1 Writers Guild of America Country El Rey SDCC Biopics 45 cats Valentine's Day Photos Amazon Hulu science fiction Tumblr SundanceTV 2017 Adult Swim Drama 21st Century Fox DirecTV MSNBC Action Emmys Podcast Food Network Netflix ITV crime drama Kids & Family Rock Character Guide HBO based on movie period drama First Look Nickelodeon Schedule Showtime talk show Holidays Universal Fox News