In the early 1960's, Eddie Wilson (Michael Pare) and his band The Cruisers enjoyed a brief fling with success, but their career came to a halt when Eddie's badly damaged car was discovered in an accident on a bridge. However, Eddie's body was never found, and years later, a reissue of the group's only album sparks rumors that the mysterious Eddie might still be alive. Frank Ridgeway (Tom Berenger), Eddie's former piano player and lyricist, finds himself trailed by Maggie Foley (Ellen Barkin), a reporter trying to find out the truth about Eddie, as well as another former bandmate who wants Frank to join his revamped version of the Cruisers -- and is trying to track down the tapes for the Cruisers' unreleased second album. While not a box-office success on its original release, Eddie and the Cruisers developed a following after its showings on cable television and release on videotape; this led to the belated success of the film's soundtrack album, featuring a number of bombastic neo-Springsteen numbers by John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band. Beaver Brown saxophonist Michael "Tunes" Antunes plays Wendell, the Cruisers' sax player and Eddie's best friend (despite the fact that we never hear him speak).
by Mark Deming synopsis