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UHF (1989)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama | 21 July 1989 (USA)
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An unemployed visionary becomes the manager of a local public station. The station becomes a success, with all sorts of hilarious sight gags and wacky humor.

Director:

Jay Levey

Writers:

'Weird Al' Yankovic (as Al Yankovic), Jay Levey
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
'Weird Al' Yankovic ... George Newman
Victoria Jackson ... Teri Campbell
Kevin McCarthy ... R.J. Fletcher
Michael Richards ... Stanley Spadowski
David Bowe ... Bob Steckler
Stanley Brock ... Harvey Bilchik
Anthony Geary ... Philo
Trinidad Silva ... Raul Hernandez
Gedde Watanabe ... Kuni
Billy Barty ... Noodles MacIntosh
John Paragon ... Richard Fletcher
Fran Drescher ... Pamela Finklestein
Sue Ane Langdon ... Esther Bilchik
David Proval ... Head Thug
Grant James ... Killer Thug
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Storyline

George Newman is a daydreamer whose hyperactive imagination keeps him from holding a steady job. His uncle decides George would be the perfect man to manage Channel 62, a television station which is losing money and viewers fast. When George replaces the station's reruns with bizarre programs such as "Stanley Spadowski's Clubhouse", "Wheel of Fish" and "Raul's Wild Kingdom", ratings begin to soar again. Mean-spirited and cynical mogul R.J. Fletcher becomes furious that the UHF station is getting better ratings than his network's programming. Because of gambling debts, the uncle is forced to consider selling the station to Fletcher, who would only too happily shut down (he cannot legally own two stations in the same town). George and his friends organize a 48-hour telethon to raise the money by selling investment stock from Channel 62 to save the town's new favorite station. Written by MGM/UA Home Video

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's crazy. It's outrageous. It's the television station run by a lunatic! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 July 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Vidiot from UHF See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$6,157,157
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (rough cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The character Dr. Philo is named after Philo T. Farnsworth, one of several inventors of television. See more »

Goofs

In the scene where R.J. Fletcher meets Harvey Bilchik at the airport to close the business deal R.J. puts the briefcase on the back end of the limo but when the limo drives off the briefcase is nowhere to be found and is assumed that R.J is holding it in the next shot. See more »

Quotes

Pamela Finklestein: Yeah, so, can I help you?
George Newman: Hi, I'm George Newman. I'm the new station manager.
Pamela Finklestein: [enraged tone] Ugh! You know, when I first took this job, they told me that this position would only be temporary, and that eventually, when the time was right, I would be moved up to news which is really my forte. You know how long I've been working here? Two years! It's kind of hard to get promoted when every other week you have a new boss! This job really sucks!
George Newman: [keeping his cool] Well... this is my friend Bob.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD Special Edition contains deleted scenes (separately from the movie) which include:
  • Two extra endings for the Emo thumb-severing scene (in the first he places the severed thumb in his pocket, and in the second he puts it in his mouth for safekeeping).
  • Extra scenes of George and Teri exploring the U62 station; scenes of George talking to the receptionist at the dentist's office where Teri works; George being turned down for a loan; R.J. practicing for his anti-U62 telecast; Richard making fun of MacIntosh (Billy Barty); a whole subplot about the head thug being afraid of insects, attempting to steal a briefcase full of U62's money and stealing a briefcase full of bugs Philo had collected instead, concluded by the thugs opening the briefcase while driving home and crashing; and other exciting moments that were not funny enough to remain in the film.
  • Alternate scenes were filmed with Stanley singing "Helter Skelter" instead of "Bonanza".
  • A brief gag taking place when the thugs knock on Stanley's door; they say "Pizza!" and Stanley responds "Pizza who?"
  • Other scenes which did not succeed include an explanation of why the martial arts teacher showed up to save George and Stanley (on the DVD commentary, Weird Al said that it was decided that no one would really care); another gag in the Indiana Jones parody had a payphone in the cave ring, George picking it up and a voice begging him not to go in (and him hanging up and, of course, going in anyway); and more footage of the Kipper Kids (the guys with the big chins at the telethon).
  • More scenes were originally scheduled for Trinidad Silva (Raul) but he was killed by a drunk driver during shooting. Scenes included a piece at the end where Poodles attack him in vengeance for the ones he taught to fly. It was briefly considered to reshoot his scenes with someone else who could finish them but it was finally decided to just leave his scenes in and forget the unfilmed ones. The movie (if you watch to the very end) was dedicated to his memory.
See more »

Connections

References The Flying Nun (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

Mr. Ed
Theme Song
Written by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans
Published by Livingston & Evans, Inc.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
This is an absolute must-see for all Weird Al fans, and anyone!
3 August 2005 | by ViveLaNeigeSee all my reviews

"UHF" is, to me, one of the greatest comedies ever. So many great scenes, so many awesome quotes, and best of all, a chance for Weird Al Yankovic to show off his talents, both as an actor and as a singer. Also, it's so much fun to see if you can pinpoint all the references to famous movies that Al puts into this film, such as the "Raiders of the Lost Ark" parody at the beginning, and many others.

The film is the story of George Newman, a young man who has trouble holding a job (and frequently gets his best friend Bob in trouble too) due to his overactive imagination. When he is given ownership of a local TV station, UHF, his imagination can finally be put to good use, in inventing the most bizarre show lineup you can imagine. When a network owner gets jealous of UHF's success, George and his friends and fans must unite to stop him and keep UHF on the air. Michael Richards is also quite excellent as the optimistic, not-too-bright Stanley.

Though it can be somewhat difficult to find, it's definitely worth the time and effort to buy "UHF" on DVD, so you can enjoy Weird Al's movie again and again and again...


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