Rated: PG for violence. Reviewed by: Chris Release date: October 21, 1994 Released by: Universal Studios, Inc.
For those of you who remember being thrilled by t he mysteries, entertained by the music and tickled by the comedy on the radio, you'll enjoy this day in the life of station WBN in Chicago.
Set in 1939 during the heyday of radio, the staff of a new radio station is dropping off like flies.
Mary Stuart Masterson plays the assistant to the station president (Ned Beatty) and her husband, played by Brian Benben (HBO's Dream On) is head writer. While the actors read their scripts and the stage revolves with various variety acts in front of a live audience, a mystery man is busy behind the scenes, killing off the staff.
The large cast includes Harvey Korman, Corbin Bernsen, the late Anita Morris, Christopher Lloyd as the sound effects engineer (a job I would love to have) and Michael Lerner as the police detective.
Producer, writer George Lucas (Star Wars) conceived of this fare over 20 years ago. It's played out at a frenetic pace with terrific big band numbers in the background.
The mystery is secondary to all the commotion going on on-stage at breakneck speed. There are tapping chorus girls, actors with unfinished scripts, and enough running around, falling down and banging into walls, to make you dizzy. In fact, there's a little too much falling down for my taste.
Masterson and Benben are cute together and have a knack for romantic comedy. There are some funny moments in Radioland Murders and if you are a fan of fast, continuous slapstick, you will probably enjoy this madcap comedy.