A Prairie Home Companion (2006)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Music  |  9 June 2006 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 19,294 users   Metascore: 75/100
Reviews: 280 user | 211 critic | 38 from Metacritic.com

A look at what goes on backstage during the last broadcast of America's most celebrated radio show, where singing cowboys Dusty and Lefty, a country music siren, and a host of others hold court.



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3 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lunch Lady
Chuck Akers
The Axeman
Dangerous Woman
Stage Manager
Makeup Lady
Tom Keith ...
Himself - Sound Effects Man


"A Prairie Home Companion", hosted by humorist Garrison Keillor, is a down home radio variety show recorded and performed live in front of an audience in a theater in St. Paul, Minnesota. A show from another era, "A Prairie Home Companion" has been canceled. The regulars are performing on the last show, including Dusty & Lefty, singing/guitar playing cowboys with a risqué sense of humor, and the Johnson Girls, a sister singing duo of Rhonda and Yolanda who have a penchant for talking over each other. As the show goes on, the regulars, backstage, talk about their lives in relation to the show. Other goings-on include Yolanda and others trying to convince her shy somber daughter, Lola, to sing on this last show. As all this goes on, a mysterious woman in a white trench coat who is on a mission wanders around the theater, while the show's dim security guard, Guy Noir, who usually has nothing to do security-wise, follows. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Radio like you've never seen it before. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for risque humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »




Release Date:

9 June 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Noches mágicas de radio  »

Box Office


$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$4,566,293 (USA) (9 June 2006)


£75,355 (UK) (5 January 2007)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


44 different musical compositions are featured throughout the film. See more »


At the beginning of the film Guy Noir leaves Mickey's Diner and walks to the Fitzgerald Theater where the program is performed. The theater is located up the street and around the corner from the diner. One would not approach the theater from the Diner and see the big neon sign. From his angle he walked up a block, turned right, walked one more block (parallel to the theater), then turned back around to face it. See more »


[first lines]
Radio Announcer: Market reports today, barrows and gilts uh two hundred twenty to two hundred sixty pounds, they're lower at forty dollars uh sows are steady three hundred five hundred pounds thirty four to thirty seven dollars going over to feeder cattle, beef steers - one hundred twenty to one hundred fifty dollars and two hundred to three hundred
[fade out]
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a credit for Sign Painter in the film, although it does not appear on the official site. See more »


Referenced in The 78th Annual Academy Awards (2006) See more »


Duct Tape Underscore
Music by Richard A. Dworsky (as Richard Dworsky)
Performed by Richard A. Dworsky (as Richard Dworsky)
See more »

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User Reviews

A song of love . . . .
5 June 2006 | by (Columbus, Ohio) – See all my reviews

"It's not true that I had nothing on. I had the radio on." Marilyn Monroe about posing nude on her famous calendar.

If there is anyone more laid back or brighter than Garrison Keillor in show business, let me know, because Robert Altman's A Prairie Home Companion, based on Keillor's long-running Minnesota Public Radio saga, shows Keillor as an audience sees him each week—like a god gently guiding an eccentric ensemble through excellent performances made to look as easy as his demeanor. This film stands near Altman's Nashville as a testimony to the director's gift for sustaining strong characters in layers of dialogue approximating overlapping conversations at an interesting party.

Meryl Streep and Lily Tomlin as the singing country Johnson sisters bring back memories of Reese Witherspoon's amazing turn as June Carter and Streep's own previous country singer in Postcards. Ditto Woody Harrelson and John C. Reilly as the singing and joking Dusty and Lefty. But best of all is Kevin Kline as Keillor's real radio creation, Guy Noir, the '40's dapper, inquisitive, naughty narrator and security head for the production. Klein embodies the melancholic mood always at least hidden underneath any show's last show, despite Keillor's nonchalant assertion that every show is your "last show." Around this realistic, charming premise of talented performers at their last performance, writer Keillor interjects a ghostly beauty in a white leather trench coat, Virginia Madsen playing Dangerous Woman, the spirit of death, gently accompanying those about to die and the moribund show itself. The character is a lyrical embodiment of the theme that nothing lasts but the love shared in any experience. Keillor remains in character after someone dies by stating he doesn't "do eulogies." Nor does he do one for the show, which in real life still lasts in St. Paul from 1974.

So enjoyable are Altman, his ubiquitous HD camera, and his busy dialogue that you feel a part of the proceedings, catching the sweet smell of success for everyone attached to this thoroughly realized song of love to theater, music, and creativity.

110 of 140 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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