A final live variety show broadcast via radio becomes a metaphor for the natural order of life. A concept and script by Garrison Keilor uses every natural and technical element of working with a tight and close ensemble producing a weekly show to sooth us and guide us through the natural but difficult transitions of aging, becoming less relevant and then dying as new, young life develops and strengthens during our final "performances." This is a rare film for it's remarkable cast and crew and one wonders how the great Robert Altman was able to gather them all at the same place and time to shoot this film.Written by
Kevin Kline's character Guy Noir is the main character in one of the serialized stories written by Garrison Keillor for the real Prairie Home Companion radio show. See more »
While Guy Noir sits at his desk, there is an "On Air" sign common to radio and TV stations. It is switched on, that is to say, the light bulb in the "On Air" sign is switched on. In a later scene the radio show is still on the air, but the sign is switched off. Technically, it should still be on, whenever a microphone is open in the studio. See more »
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
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There is a credit for Sign Painter in the film, although it does not appear on the official site. See more »
Funny, feel-good movie that will be a hit with radio-show fans.
The movie opens with a view of rural Minnesota, accompanied by 1950's radio...music, farm report, commodity prices, etc. It quickly moves to Mickey's Diner, an establishment located just a few blocks from the Fitzgerald Theater in downtown St. Paul, Minnesota. There we see Guy Noir, whose job is managing security for the "A Prairie Home Companion" radio program. Soon we are in the theater, preparing for the live performance of the radio program. Virtually all the remainder of the movie happens in the Fitzgerald.
Note: I have attended two APHC performances in the Fitzgerald, and have eaten in Mickey's Diner. The exteriors in the movie are all real, and the stage, the sets and auditorium shots of the Fitzgerald are likewise genuine. Even a brief shot of a church near the theater, toward the end of the movie, is genuine. You can see some photos at PHCFan.com. The stage action in the movie is just like it happens in real life. Whether the dressing-room scenes and GK's disregard for deadlines are similar to real-life, I don't know.
During much of the movie we are puzzled by a mysterious woman in white who has certainly caught Guy Noir's eye...her garments are so tight he can "read the embroidery on her panties." She walks calmly around the stage and through the set during the show itself. We learn her identity in the second half of the movie.
The real-life Sue Scott plays a hairdresser in the movie, a speaking role. Even if you don't recognize her face you will recognize her voice. All the other regulars seem to play themselves.
The movie audience really enjoyed the movie. We laughed heartily at the jokes, and applauded at the end. It is a feel-good movie, a must-see for fans of the weekly radio program.
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