Submitted by Tornado Dragon

On Pop’s Paradise’s last day in business, Sunshine (Kelli Williams) tells Pirate (Dermot Mulroney) that she has discovered that she is pregnant. When he drops her off at Pop’s that night so she can work her final shift there, she asks him if he wants to have the baby, but the only answer that he can muster is that they will figure something out. Meanwhile, Michael (Noah Wyle) breaks up with Tracy (Kristin Minter) due to him believing that no deep emotional connection has ever existed between them, and her feeling that he is a know-it-all who thinks that he is fighting the good fight but is really accomplishing nothing. She forces him to get out of her car just outside Westwood High School, and there, he sees Morrisey (Shon Greenblatt) doing another protest against the Vietnam War around the sentinel soldier statue in front of the school while a teachers’ orientation is going on. Morrisey brings up his brother, who died fighting in the war two months ago, and he yells to the people listening to him that he feels that his brother died for nothing. He then verbally roasts the government, telling everyone that they don’t care about what happens to him or anybody else, and then he caps it all off by taking out his draft card and burning it. As he does this, a few police officers show up with attack dogs, having been called to the scene by the abrasive Principal Maran (Frederick Coffin) to end Morrisey’s protest, and they beat Morrisey bloody before hauling him off to jail.

Stick (Ricky Schroder) spends the bulk of the night worrying about having to report for Army basic training early tomorrow morning, knowing that he will more than likely be sent over to Vietnam once it’s done. Michael is then seen riding with Pirate in the latter’s car, having managed to get a ride with him, and after telling Pirate that he doesn’t see the point in going to college now because it seems like no one cares about anything anymore, he says that he thinks that he should join Pirate on his country-wide driving trip that he is planning. Pirate informs him that he doubts that that trip is going to happen now, since Sunshine is pregnant with his child. Pirate soon stops by the house of his friend, Mateo, to get information from him about an unlicensed abortion doctor practicing in Tijuana that he knows about, thinking that he might be able to persuade Sunshine to go see him. However, before Mateo hands him a piece of paper with the doctor’s phone number on it, he informs Pirate that he knew a woman who suffered an infection after visiting that doctor and got sick, and though she recovered from it, she might not be able to have children ever again. Once Mateo goes back inside his home, Pirate tosses the paper in the trash and heads back to his car. While this goes on, Babette (Jill Schoelen) and her singing group, Angel Babies, manage to get placed in the last set on the Shindig! music show, and though they have to perform a short song due to time constraints, their performance receives a standing ovation from the studio audience, and Babette’s friends see her performance on the TV at Pop’s and applaud her. Pirate shows up at the restaurant soon after, and he meets with Sunshine and tells her about the abortion doctor he found, but in the end, neither are sure that that is the way they want to handle the pregnancy.

While Stick is at Pop’s Paradise, his fear and anxiety over being sent into the Vietnam War finally starts to get the better of him, and when he sees a news report on the TV informing the viewers that Morrisey has just been found dead in his cell from an apparent suicide, he develops a full-on panic attack and believes that he is doomed to die as well, so Pop (Seymour Cassel) and a few of his friends try to calm him down. Michael becomes angry over the news of Morrisey’s death and tells Pirate that he is going to Westwood High to see Maran and finish what Morrisey started, and Pirate, Calvin (Kenny Ransom), Mary Beth (Lucy Deakins), and several others follow him out of the restaurant.

After Michael and company arrive at Westwood High, Michael decides to pay tribute to Morrisey by dousing the sentinel soldier statue with gasoline and setting it ablaze. Before he does so, he tells everyone that Morrisey was just a student who was fighting for what he believed in, and then he claims that Morrisey was really murdered. After he ignites the statue, Maran furiously charges at him and starts punching him, but Pirate comes to Michael’s defense by tackling Maran and then taking him on himself. Morrisey’s girlfriend, Emily (Ele Keats), then starts to get unjustly harassed by an arriving policeman, prompting Calvin to step in and get her away from him. Tracy then picks up Michael in her car and drives off with him, and Maran – unwilling to let the confrontation between him and Michael end like this – decides to try to give chase in his own car. However, just after Maran gets his door open, he sees Tracy turn her car around and drive straight towards him, and after he jumps into his car to get out of harm’s way, she hits the open door and breaks it off. She and Michael then speed off into the night, as do all the other students, just as more police officers and a fire truck show up.

Everyone returns to Pop’s Paradise just as it is getting close to closing time, and Tracy and Michael share a kiss outside (though their relationship remains over). Sunshine talks to Mary Beth in private and tells her that she doesn’t know what to do about her pregnancy; she isn’t sure that she can have a baby now, but she doesn’t know if she can get rid of it, either. Mary Beth tries to comfort her by telling her that she always knows how to do the right thing, and she herself knows that she will make this work out. Sunshine tells her that she needs to go to the peace rally in Berkeley like she planned, and she has no desire to tie Pirate down because he needs to go find America. Mary Beth then firmly declares to Sunshine that she is going to attend UC Berkeley against her parents’ wishes, and after telling Sunshine that she had better wait for her, the two of them share a hug.

A short time later, Sunshine meets with Pirate outside the restaurant again, and she proceeds to lie to him by telling him that she discovered that she isn’t pregnant after all, and he happily kisses her. Her ride to San Francisco then pulls up nearby, and after getting her duffel bag out of Pirate’s car and putting an envelope on the front seat, she tells Pirate that she loves him, but she is still going away. Before she takes off, Pirate asks her how he will find her, since he is going to come up to San Francisco at some point, and she tells him to put some flowers in his hair and SHE’LL find HIM. After she goes, he opens the envelope to see that it contains her peace symbol necklace. Meanwhile, Stick is last shown walking calmly back to his car after Pop’s shuts down.

The adult Mary Beth – who has been serving as the film’s narrator – informs the viewer that Pop’s Paradise was demolished the next day as scheduled, and she never went into the shopping mall that was built in its place. She also says that, despite her telling her friends that they would be best friends forever and that she would never forget them, Sunshine is the only one that she has remained in touch with since that night, and they are still the best of friends. She is also the godmother of Sunshine’s now-adult son, whose name is Pirate.

She then explains what became of the rest of her friends:

    • Pirate never got to travel the country; he was drafted into the Army and sent to Vietnam, where he was killed in action in the Mekong Delta.
    • Babette hung out and toured in the music business for ten years. Today, she produces a successful rock-and-roll show.
    • Calvin graduated from Princeton University and became a successful lawyer, and in 1982, he was elected to the U.S. Senate.
    • Tracy went through three failed marriages and has been in and out of the Betty Ford Clinic. She is still seeking her own salvation.
    • Stick survived the Vietnam War and even won a Bronze Star for Valor. After he got out of the Army, he returned to his surfer lifestyle, and he now owns a surf shop in Laguna Beach called “Stick’s Paradise.”
    • Michael became a professor at UCLA, and he teaches its most popular course, which is called “The Road to Freedom.”

Mary Beth then adds that she wrote a book titled “There Goes My Baby” about her and her friends’ last night at Pop’s Paradise, and she kept her promise to never forget any of her friends by dedicating the book to all of them.

01 hours 39 minutes