Skip to main content

It's a Good Life (1983)

USA, 1983 (MIFF 2010, Dante's Inferno)

Director: Joe Dante

“Something like an off-Broadway cartoon designed by Chuck Jones.” - Joe Dante

Beware of seemingly sweet kids who ask you to drive them home and then invite you in to meet their family…

Made as part of an omnibus movie version of Rod Serling's famed Twilight Zone series (Steven Spielberg, John Landis and George Miller directed the other segments) this is Dante at his purest and most brilliant. A 26-minute, pastel-coloured horror masterpiece filled with monsters and cartoons and fuelled by total creative freedom, ‘It's a Good Life' is a Richard Matheson adaptation of Jerome Bixby's short story with assistance from Chuck Jones. Look for Bill Murray in the diner scene.

D Joe Dante P Jon Davison, Michael Finnell, John Landis, Steven Spielberg S Jerome Bixby, Richard Matheson TD 35mm /1983

See also...

THE ‘BURBS (1989)

“A divine comedy full of corrosive humor… and a film that anticipates the Judd Apatow comedy brand, full of immature adults who fulfill (and enjoy) themselves through all forms of regressive ... More »


“The movie is smarter, wilder and more unfettered than the original Gremlins.” - New Yorker ... The Gremlins go to Manhattan in this brilliantly hyperbolic follow up the 1984 classic, which also ... More »

MATINEE (1993)

“In this funny, philosophical salute to B-movies and the B-Moguls who made them, Dante looks back fondly on growing up with the apocalypse always in your mind.” - Washington Post ... Genial ... More »


“If The ‘Burbs is a one-finger exercise on the themes of Rear Window, Innerspace is a big-budget remake of North by Northwest, with a script that is in many ways even better: certainly ... More »


\You've got a gateway to hell under your house… and that is really cool.\" ... More »


“There will be no mercy.” - major Chip Hazard ... It's the ruthless, armed to the teeth, grotesquely macho Commando Elite versus the noble, cowardly, freakish Gorgonites in the third chapter of ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director