“My name’s Philip, and this is going to be a yarn about me and my pal, Marlowe. About the day we got out of this shelter and went off into the post-nuclear world. Now, as excited as we were about leaving the shelter, it was still a joint that held fond memories. I mean, it was the only world we’d ever known. Where I practiced my magic, Marlowe, his dancing; where we both dreamed of becoming private eyes, just like the one’s we’d read about.”
With those words, Philip Chandler (John Stockwell, Christine) and Marlowe Hammer (Michael Dudikoff, the American Ninja himself) — abandoned by their fathers in a fallout shelter cut into the side of a wooded mountain since the nuclear war of 1996 –enter the end of the world.
The pair have been raised by 1950s detective fiction and swing music. Now, with new haircuts and nice suits, they enter the world for their first day of adventure. They save a gorgeous girl named Miles (Lisa Blount, Prince of Darkness) within minutes and run afoul of another named Rusty (Michele Little, My Demon Lover) on the way to find the one nuclear missile that still remains.
They battle disco mutants, cannibals, child gangsters and one of their fathers — Spade Chandler, played by George Kennedy. The film ends with the duo engaging in a tap dance post-nuke shuffle throughout the city before seeming to set up future adventures.
Radioactive Dreams was written and directed by Albert Pyun, who you may know from his other films like Dollman, Cyborg, The Sword and the Sorcerer and Cannon’s 1990 Captain America, which featured Frank Langella as the Red Skull.
While this film never made it in theaters, it enjoyed a rich life on VHS. Yet somehow, in this era of multiple discoveries and re-releases, it hasn’t even come out on DVD yet!