Films and TV with a Radio Storyline

This page has been put together after an interesting discussion on one of the Essex Ham Amateur Radio ‘net’ discussions – what movies can you think of that have a strong radio-theme? Broadcast radio, Ham radio. Anything.

Here are a few that popped up as part of the evening’s on-air discussion:

Films: Broadcast Radio

  • The Boat That Rocked – Pirate radio in the 60s… sort of
  • Play Misty for Me – Clint Eastwood stalker classic
  • Alan Partridge “Alpha Papa” – New film with Partridge in a radio station siege
  • Good Morning Vietnam – Robin Williams bending the rules as an early military radio shock jock
  • Private Parts – The life story of US radio shock jock Howard Stern
  • Cry for Help – US film where the presenter gets the town to help track down a girl threatening to kill herself
  • FM – No static at all. Believed to be the inspiration behind US sitcom WKRP


Films: Ham Radio

  • Frequency – In this 2000 film, a son accidentally makes contact with his late father over ham radio, and saves his life.
  • Contact – Starts with Jodie Foster using ham radio with her dad. Her radio experience helps her to pluck an alien message from space in later life.


TV series: Ham Radio

  • Last Man Standing – Current US TV sitcom featuring Tim Allen as a radio ham
  • Tony Hancock “The Radio Ham” – You can watch this online for free on YouTube.

Tony Hancock - The Radio Ham


Films: CB Radio

  • “Convoy”


Films: Other radio

  • Enigma – WWII HF decoding
  • Independence Day – Details of the mission to bring down the invaders, was sent by Morse
  • Titanic and A Night To Remember – Films documenting the loss of RMS Titanic in 1912, and highlighting the tireless efforts of wireless operators Phillips and Bride

TV series

  • “Radio Phoenix” – an old TVS soap opera
  • WKRP – Classic US sitcom
  • Kit Curran Radio Show – Denis Lawson as a local community radio presenter
  • I’m Alan Partridge – Radio Norfolk (later North Norfolk Digital)
  • FM – Recentish Channel 4 sitcom
  • Midnight Caller – US drama
  • Shoestring – Trevor Eve detective series, set at Radio West
  • Dukes of Hazzard (often featured CB radio)
  • Last Man Standing – Current US TV sitcom featuring Tim Allen as a radio ham
  • The Forest Rangers – 1960’s Canadian series featuring CB and walkie-talkies (thanks Mark M0IEO for that one)

Thanks to everyone who got in touch on-air to help build this list. Any more? Please add them below!


  1. Mark M0IEO 10 November 2013 Reply
    • Pete M0PSXAuthor 10 November 2013 Reply
  2. Mark Sanderson, M0IEO 11 November 2013 Reply
    • Pete M0PSXAuthor 11 November 2013 Reply
      • Tony 29 July 2017 Reply
  3. Mark Sanderson, M0IEO 11 November 2013 Reply
  4. Jakub 2E0FTX 3 March 2015 Reply
  5. Bri M6UHN 4 March 2015 Reply

Leave a Reply to Pete M0PSX Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *