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Michael D. Roberts
This is a quintessential 80s film, but for unusual reasons. One is the nostalgia. The dramatic nostalgia of Blade Runner is taken to melodramatic extremes here. Some cues: the band's manager's zoot suit; the Renaissance diversity of the Irregulars; the emphasis on Science (as in, "She Blinded Me With -- ". These are the boy geniuses who fought the Kaiser and the Boy Allies who thwarted the Nazis. So the concept is charmingly nostalgic. But the quality of acting is undeniable, not only because there are so many non-diva working actors, but because you can tell each one is making an earnest effort. Sometimes, when you watch a crummy movie, you can tell the actors knew from Week One that this little dog would be best left off the resume. Not with this movie! Everyone made an earnest effort that was not too over-the-top. The purely 80s aspects -- skinny neckties, proto-geekiness, fascination with Japanese culture, retro-modernity -- are delicious to some of us who lived through it, but possibly baffling to others. But if you speak the language, it's pure poetry.
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