A bottom of the barrel '80s teen comedy that just so happens to have been directed by a total genius. Altman's spirit shines through in the sheer zany, breakneck DENSITY of every aspect of the film, particularly the overloaded production design (that cactus house!), but mostly this one's a dud. The jokes fall flat, the plot's a mess, the characters are cookie cutter, and the racism and homophobia are cringe-inducing.
One of Altman's trademark zooms pretty clearly captures Melvin Van Peebles' chest rising and falling as he breathes in and out in the scene where he's supposed to be dead, and the titular characters are trying to wake him up, completely undercutting an attempted shift in tone. So it goes.
A neglected comedy that begs for a cult following. Sitting on the shelf for several years, Robert Altman's attempt to fuse the anti-establishment ethos of his 1970s films with the apolitcal youth comedies of the 80s probably was destined to not find a mass audience. Yet the laughs are there, with several hilarious performances and an overall air of high-spirited, good-natured fun.