A Prairie Home Companion
starring Garrison Keillor, Kevin Kline, Woody Harrelson, L.Q. Jones, Tommy Lee Jones, Lindsay Lohan, Virginia Madsen, Meryl Streep, John C. Reilly, Maya Rudolph, Tim Russell and Lily Tomlin
screenplay by Garrison Keillor
directed by Robert Altman
If you don’t know, A Prairie Home Companion is a live radio broadcast from Minneapolis-St. Paul’s in Minnesotahosted by a man named Garrison Keillor. I never heard of the show until the 1990s after I started hearing it on the American Armed Forces Far East Network radio station (FEN radio) here in Tokyo. Keillor is also an author, famous for spinning humorous tales of life in the make-believe town of “Lake Woebeggon,”Minnesota. On the radio he is a strange personality with a very becoming, deep voice and slow delivery. It’s a very attractive voice, really. I always tried to imagine what his face looked like. Well, he stars in the film about his radio show that he also wrote, so now I know. But before I saw him I kind of imagined a Rock Hudson kind of face. In reality, Garrison Keillor looks like a bulging-eyed fish in need of a haircut. The story is a telling of what is supposed to be his last radio show, before the big network-owning corporation shuts him down for financial reasons. A Prairie Home Companion is, after all, a kind of lingering historic anachronism - a radio variety show like what used to be common sixty years, before the popularity of television.