Undecided whether to go to college, burdened by anxieties about nuclear apocalypse, forever at loggerheads with her Mom and Dad, teenager Audry (Shelly) finds life in her small Long Island home-town impossibly tedious. But when tall, dark, handsome Josh (Burke) arrives on the scene cloaked in mystery, her mundane world is transformed, not only by the erotic attraction she feels for the silent stranger, but by the rumours concerning his past: is he a priest, a mechanic, or - as most townsfolk would have it - a mass murderer? Like Mystery Train and Metropolitan, Hartley's independent first feature partly concerns problems of knowledge and truth: how do hearsay and personal bias relate to reality? He adopts an engagingly low-key form of farce to make his point, and to paint an affectionate, accurate satire on the shortcomings of small-town life. The director's delicately turned script is well served by colourful but credible performances, and by Michael Spiller's stark but stylish camerawork.