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199 user 63 critic

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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Popularity
3,737 ( 3)

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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 zany. It's hysterical. It's television according to "Weird Al" Yankovic. 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
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (rough cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At one point in the "Gandhi II" scene, Gandhi slams a bad guy's head repeatedly into the roof of his Ferrari. When doing this on-set, it actually left a dent in the roof of the car, which caused great concern because it wasn't immediately clear if the damage to the car was covered by studio insurance. Fortunately, it was. See more »

Goofs

In the Indiana Jones scene, as Al runs out of where the Oscar statue was, there's a yellow diamond road sign to the left of the opening that says "Watch For Falling Rocks", yet when he was walking in earlier, that section was clearly visible and the sign wasn't there. Also, all the barricades and other traffic signs Indy passed on the way in have disappeared when he leaves (this may have been intentional). See more »

Quotes

[repeated line]
Bum: Hey, mister! Change? You got change?
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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.
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Connections

Spoofs First Blood (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

Money for Nothing / Beverly Hillbillies
Parody based on: "Money for Nothing"
Written by Mark Knopfler and Sting
Published by Charlscourt Limited
Administered in U.S. and Canada by Almo Music Corp. / Virgin Music, Inc.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Not as good as I remember, but not THAT bad
27 October 2003 | by maxxpowers69See all my reviews

The 1989 "Weird" Al Yankovic vehicle is good for some chuckles but far from brilliant. I must admit it was fond childhood memories that led me to unburden myself of the $9.99 that my local Circuit City was asking for DVD. I remembered Conan The Librarian, I remembered Gahandi 2, I remembered laughing my 8-year-old butt off, but would this film stand the test of time.

When they jokes and parodies hit well in UHF they hit very well, and as always Michael Richards is wonderful. The overall impression of the film though that it is a 97 minute Weird Al video. If over an hour and a half long weird Al video is your idea of cinematic ecstasy then by all means buy this film. However, if you are looking for a smart comedy avoid this fill at all cost. Personally I like a good dumb comedy and that coupled with my nostalgia makes the purchase worthwhile. If you lack either you might not be so pleasant following you purchase.

Keep an eye out for Emo Philips though in his amazing part as a sedated shop teacher that segment alone is pure comedy.


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