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Remote Control (1930)

A radio announcer (Haines) suspects a cohort sends coded messages over the air to his bank-robber friends.


Albert C. Fuller (based on the play by), Jack Nelson (based on the play by) (as Jack T. Nelson) | 2 more credits »

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Complete credited cast:
William Haines ... William Judd Brennan
Charles King ... Sam Ferguson
Mary Doran ... Marion Ferguson
John Miljan ... Doctor Leonard T. Kruger
Polly Moran ... Polly
J.C. Nugent J.C. Nugent ... Horace V. Smedley
Edward J. Nugent ... Radio Engineer (as Edward Nugent)
Wilbur Mack Wilbur Mack ... Chief of Police
James Donlan James Donlan ... Blodgett
Edward Brophy ... Al
Warner Richmond ... Max (as Warner P. Richmond)
Russell Hopton ... Frank


A radio announcer (Haines) suspects a cohort sends coded messages over the air to his bank-robber friends.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Passed | See all certifications »






Release Date:

15 November 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Amor por Ondas Curtas See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The $28,000 the gang steals from the bank would equate to over $400,000 in 2018. See more »


William J. Brennan: Doctor Kruger, won't you talk into my waffle?
See more »


The Wedding March
(1842) (uncredited)
Written by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Played on the piccolo by Roscoe Ates
See more »

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User Reviews

Haines Past His Prime
21 August 2012 | by dglinkSee all my reviews

William Haines made an easy transition to sound, and his voice provided added dimension to his wisecracking on-screen character. In 1930's "Remote Control," Haines plays Bill Brennan, the brash over-confident manager of a radio station in need of a bailout. In what would today be regarded as sexual harassment, Brennan ardently pursues a female station employee, played by Mary Doran. The Haines-Doran match is an unlikely affair, either on or off screen, and, in any case, Doran is infatuated with a suave phony psychic, played by the greasy John Miljan. Hired by Brennan to provide on-air advice from the great beyond, Miljan instead broadcasts instructions to his gang of thieves thinly disguised as messages from the spirits.

Although still handsome, youthful, and full of energy, Haines was nearing the end of his career with "Remote Control," and he would retire only four years later. Haines fans will delight in his often-childish facial expressions and campy performance; non-fans may be less enthusiastic. However, neither fans nor non-fans will find this to be his best work or his best film. After a light breezy start, the plot veers into a grade-B crime flick, while Haines ignores the turn and sticks his tongue out at gangsters. Despite the efforts of three credited directors, this early talkie is typically stiff and stagy; the camera fluidity that reached a zenith in the late silent era has been lost to the demands of sound recording. While "Remote Control" is essential viewing for admirers of William Haines, the film may be a tough slog for others.

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