(Thom Eberhart, 1984)
This bizarrely deadpan, resolutely quirky sensibility of this movie can be disorienting and is sometimes not fully realized - a bit draggy, a bit thin. But if you gear down and roll with it, you are rewarded. Basically, it showcases the resilience and self-regard of Valley Girl culture - the world ends, and while they have some regrets they basically just go on hanging out and dishing and dealing with shit as it arises. Which shit includes Raoul himself, Robert Beltran, as ambiguous and neighbourly enabler; the great Mary Woronov as righteous rebel from the lab-mad brethren of the compound; and some mall working slackers gone wrong. The latter groupings have lapsed into varying degrees of zombiedom, and if there's any logic to how they attained this state while everyone else turned to dust, it must have passed me by. But what really matters are Catherine Mary Stewart and Kelli Maroney, who have a great thing going with their smart interplay; their force of personality give a humane jolt to such merely witty Eberhart conceits as the trick dream sequence and the MAC-10 target practice. Not to mention the positively Brechtian happy ending, a Reagan-era nuclear fam fantasy so brazenly alienated that it takes the whole thing up a notch.