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Radio Days (1987)

PG | | Comedy | 30 January 1987 (USA)
0:31 | Trailer

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A nostalgic look at radio's golden age focusing on one ordinary family and the various performers in the medium.



Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
'Guess That Tune' Host
Martin Rosenblatt ...
Mr. Needleman
Helen Miller ...
Mrs. Needleman
Danielle Ferland ...
Child Star
Tess, the mother
Julie Kurnitz ...
David Warrilow ...
Masked Avenger
Mick Murray ...
Avenger Crook (as Michael Murray)
William Flanagan ...
Avenger Announcer
Martin, the father


Woody Allen's sentimental reminiscence about the golden age of radio. A series of vignettes involving radio personalities is intertwined with the life of a working class family in Rockaway Beach, NY circa 1942. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



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Release Date:

30 January 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Días de radio  »

Box Office


$16,000,000 (estimated)


$14,792,779 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


According to the film's closing credits, actresses Mia Farrow and Diane Keaton shared the same vocal coach, Janet Frank, and billed as the vocal coach for Ms. Farrow & Ms. Keaton. See more »


In one scene, a pack of Camel cigarettes lies on a table, with a clearly visible bar code on the side of the package. The Universal Product Code would not be introduced until the 1970s. See more »


Rabbi Baumel: Radio... It's all right once in a while. Otherwise it tends to induce bad values, false dreams, lazy habits. Listening to these stories of foolishness and violence... this is no way for a boy to grow up.
Joe: You speak the truth, my faithful Indian companion.
Rabbi Baumel: To a rabbi you say "my faithful Indian companion"?
[hits him in a head]
See more »


Referenced in Roseanne: Radio Days (1988) See more »


Written by Alberto Domínguez (as A. Domínguez)
English Lyrics by Ray Charles (uncredited) and Bob Russell (uncredited)
Performed by Artie Shaw on radio
Courtesy of RCA Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Wistful, Sweet, and Excellent
12 June 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

RADIO DAYS is one of Woody Allen's most underrated comedies, a fond look back to the days of radio and its effects on his family.

Set against long-forgotten radio programs, hit songs, and the coming of World War II, we get two narrative threads. The Rockaway family dealing with everyday issues in a series of vignettes, and the fictional life of Sally White (Mia Farrow) as she rises from cigarette girl to glittering radio star.

The cast is excellent. Farrow has a solid role as the Brooklyn girl with the Judy Holliday voice who battles her way toward upward mobility. Julie Kavner and Michael Tucker are terrific as the parents. Dianne Wiest is sweet as Aunt Bea, always on the lookout for true love. Seth Green plays Woody as a kid. Diane Keaton and Kitty Carlisle show up as singers. Josh Mostel and Renee Lippin are hilarious as the aunt and uncle. Wallace Shawn has a funny bit as the "Masked Avenger." Other notables include Richard Portnow as Si, Kenneth Mars as the rabbi, Larry David as the crazed neighbor, Jeff Daniels and William H. Macy as radio actors, Tony Roberts as the game show host, Danny Aiello as the gangster, and a special kudo for the hilarious Gina DeAngelis as his mother.

Highlights include Bea's date on the night of Orson Welles' famous radio program about a Martian invasion, and the poignant episode about the live radio coverage of a girl who's fallen down a well. The film also takes nostalgic looks at radio serials, quiz programs, and comedy shows.

The film perfectly captures the middle class neighborhood of Allen's youth. The interiors are beautifully done (Santo Loquasto), and very memorable is the awe-inspiring visit to Radio City Music Hall with its dimmed lights, lush carpets, and warm red-and-gold tones.

There is also a parade oh hit songs of the day that include "September Song," "Tico Tico," "Mairzy Doats," "South American Way," "Pistol Packin' Mama," "If I Didn't Care," and so many others.

A final word for the many actors and actresses in small parts who make this movie feel so right. Many have walk-ons or have only a line or two but they add the perfect touch and help recreate Woody Allen's beloved New York City.

24 of 24 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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