Talk Radio (1988)

R  |   |  Drama  |  13 January 1989 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 9,675 users  
Reviews: 75 user | 37 critic

A rude, contemptuous talk show host becomes overwhelmed by the hatred that surrounds his program just before it goes national.



(book), (play), 4 more credits »
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Salvador (1986)
Drama | History | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An American photojournalist gets caught in a political struggle at El Salvador in 1980.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: James Woods, James Belushi, Michael Murphy
Action | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The final movie in Oliver Stone's Vietnam trilogy follows the true story of a Vietnamese village girl who survives a life of suffering and hardship during and after the Vietnam war. As a ... See full summary »

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Hiep Thi Le, Tommy Lee Jones, Haing S. Ngor
Nixon (1995)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A biographical story of former U.S. president Richard Milhous Nixon, from his days as a young boy to his eventual presidency which ended in shame.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Joan Allen, Powers Boothe
The Hand (1981)
Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Jon Lansdale is a comic book artist who loses his right hand in a car accident. The hand was not found at the scene of the accident, but it soon returns by itself to follow Jon around, and ... See full summary »

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Michael Caine, Andrea Marcovicci, Annie McEnroe
U Turn (1997)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A young punk drifter heading to Vegas to pay off his gambling debt before the Russian mafia kills him, is forced to stop in a Arizona town where everything that can go wrong, does go wrong for him.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Sean Penn, Jennifer Lopez, Nick Nolte
Comandante (2003)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Documentary on the director's meeting with Castro.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Fidel Castro, Oliver Stone, Juanita Vera
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A road trip across five countries to explore the social and political movements as well as the mainstream media's misperception of South America while interviewing seven of its elected presidents.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Tariq Ali, Raúl Castro, Hugo Chávez
Biography | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The biography of Ron Kovic. Paralyzed in the Vietnam war, he becomes an anti-war and pro-human rights political activist after feeling betrayed by the country he fought for.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Tom Cruise, Raymond J. Barry, Caroline Kava
The Doors (1991)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of the famous and influential 1960s rock band and its lead singer and composer, Jim Morrison, from his days as a UCLA film student in Los Angeles, to his untimely death in Paris, France at age 27 in 1971.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Val Kilmer, Meg Ryan, Kyle MacLachlan
W. I (2008)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A chronicle of the life and presidency of George W. Bush.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Banks, Ioan Gruffudd
JFK (1991)
Drama | History | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A New Orleans DA discovers there's more to the Kennedy assassination than the official story.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Kevin Costner, Gary Oldman, Jack Lemmon
Seizure (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

Jonathan Frid portrays a horror novelist who has a recurring nightmare about three figures out of his book who terrorize him and his family and friends during a weekend of fun. Then the ... See full summary »

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Jonathan Frid, Martine Beswick, Joseph Sirola


Cast overview, first billed only:
Linda Atkinson ...
Sheila Fleming
Jeffrey Fisher / Francine
Sid Greenberg
Tony Frank ...
Harlan Jordan ...
Bill Johnson ...
Fan #1
Kevin Howard ...
Fan #2
Woman at Basketball Game / Denise


An acerbic radio talk show host based in Dallas starts what could be an important few days when he discovers that his controversial late night show is about to be "picked up" by a nationwide network of radio stations. However, all is not perfect for him, because on top of troubles with his love life and fears that the management of the network will try to alter the content of his show he has to cope with a neo-nazi group who have been angered by his forthright opinions. Written by Mark Thompson <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The last neighborhood in America. See more »




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

13 January 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

As Vozes da Ira  »

Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)


$3,468,572 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When Barry is bring introduced to the crowd at the SMU basketball game, the Emcee says that "football will be back in the fall". It was during this period that the real SMU football program had received the "death penalty" from the NCAA for recruiting violations, and the program itself had been forced to shut down operations. See more »


The radio station gives its identification as "KGAB in Dallas". Dallas shares its media market with Fort Worth, so all radio and television stations give their identification as being from "Dallas-Fort Worth". See more »


Dan: Barry you should ask me before you put another guest on the show.
Barry: Why?
Dan: Because I'm your boss, that's why.
See more »


References The Blob (1958) See more »


Bad to the Bone
Written by George Thorogood
Performed by Michael Wetherwax
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Talked to Death
14 June 2005 | by (Brooklyn NY USA) – See all my reviews

***SPOILERS*** For some strange reason Oliver Stone's "Talk Radio" based on the Stephen Singular book "Talked to Death" and the films star Eric Bogosian's play, about the 1984 murder of Denver talk show host Alan Berg, has never gotten the recognition that it so rightfully deserved. The 1988 movie was prophetic enough to recognize the underground movement that was developing in the farm and hinterland of America. A movement that spawned, some seven years later, the likes of an angry and disgruntled Gulf War veteran Timothy McVeigh who's hatred for the US governments actions in Wacco Texas lead to his and friend,Terry Nichols, detonation of the US Federal Building in Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995 that took the lives of 168 people, the worst act of terrorism on US soil up to that time.

The movie is, as far as I know, the first time that any major branch of the entertainment media mentioned and elaborated on the rural militia novel "The Turner Diaries" by the late William L. Pierce, that has since become a chilling underground classic. "The Turner Diaries" forecast a domestic and utterly disastrous terrorist attack, like the Oklahoma City bombing, on a US Government Federal facility which was the FBI Building in Washington D.C.

Dallas radio station KGAB talk show host Barry Champlain, Eric Bogosian, is the top rated show in the Dallas listening area and is now about to go national. Barry get's his high rating by his razor sharp wit and abusive behavior when he's on the air. Taking on all comers and ducking no issues, no matter how unpopular or taboo they are, has gotten Barry to be the most listened to as well as hated man on radio. Barry being a showman at heart and not thinking that his talk can lead to violence keeps up his abrasiveness to his call-in listeners as his rating go up to the celling. But there are those in the listening audience, mostly ultra right wing types, that don't take too kindly to his in your face attitude. One of them decides to take matters into his on hand at Barry's expense.

Powerhouse performance by Eric Bogosian as the tragic Barry Champlain who crossed the line from entertainment to hard reality in his actions on the radio. Thinking that he's not that important to be sought out and murdered for his on the air opinions which is enemies dislike he found out only too late that there are those out there who are crazy enough to do to him on the outside. Also in the movie "Talk Radio" is a very young Alic Baldwin as Barry's boss Dan who tries to have him soften his tone but in the end goes along with his talk show style since he's killing the competition not realizing that in the end it's him that he'll end up getting killed.

Both Ellen Green and Leslie Hope are the two women in Barry's life his ex-wife Ellen and now lover and talk show producer Laura whom Barry uses to his advantage and almost ends up losing both of them at the same time. The 1988 film "Talk Radio" is so far ahead of it's time that even if you watch it now in 2005 you still think that it's too disturbing to be shown to an over sensitive and delicate American public.

24 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Liberal Talk Radio Hosts? pauluswiggus
Stone's Best? Professor_Abronsius
Howard Stern cptmorrow
What a piece of crap ChrisSmithBoston63
What was the dispute between Stone and Bogosian? Scoooter
the play brassmonkey125
Discuss Talk Radio (1988) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: