Film director known for a string of cult 1980's sci-fi/fantasy films that oftentimes ran on pure crazy moon-logic.
Dante's work is notable for the strong affection he has for '40s and '50s horror movies (Matinee is a love letter to William Castle, for example), and his taste for black comedy and political commentary. He first got attention for The Movie Orgy, a seven-hour-long collection of weird film clips, ads and trailers that Dante still curates and screens around the country. After a few smaller successes, he directed Gremlins, which launched a long, contentious relationship with Hollywood, which didn't seem to understand that Dante had a few axes to grind, especially with the political climate celebrating the '50s as a happy Golden Age and the suburbs as a great place to be. With a few exceptions, though, he's relatively subtle about his opinions.
Actually probably better known to people of a certain age for Eerie Indiana than for his movies; he was an executive producer and directed five episodes.
The films he directed include:
- The Howling
- Looney Tunes Back in Action
- Small Soldiers
- The Burbs
He also directed segments of the Anthology Films Twilight Zone the Movie and Amazon Women on the Moon, as well as the Masters of Horror episodes "Homecoming" and "The Screwfly Solution" and the pre-show for the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.
Tropes present in Dante's work include:
- Author Appeal: Giant monster movies, Universal horror, and cartoons.
- Creator Breakdown: Arguably only Terry Gilliam has had a harder time making the movies he wants to make.