In this semi-improvised look at life along the edges of L.A.'s rock scene, Chris D. (real name Chris Desjardins, leader of the L.A. punk band The Flesh Eaters) plays Jeff, a singer/songwriter who has suddenly gone missing. Two of his friends, bandmate Dean (John Doe, from the group X) and faithful roadie Chris (Chris Shearer), seem anxious to get in touch with him, and with good reason: Jeff and his band were stiffed by a club owner on payment for a recent gig, so they broke into the club's safe and took off with the loot. Now Jeff and the money have vanished, and Dean and Chris are torn between their concern for their friend's safety and their need to get their hands on the cash. Meanwhile, Jeff wanders aimlessly in Mexico, seemingly content after cutting himself off from the turmoil of his life in Los Angeles. Border Radio features members of several important California punk and roots bands in significant roles, including Dave Alvin of The Blasters and Texacala Jones of Tex and the Horseheads; Green on Red are shown playing a club date and The Lazy Cowgirls are featured on the soundtrack. Co-directors Allison Anders, Dean Lent, and Kurt Voss were UCLA film students who met while working on the crew of Wim Wenders's Paris, Texas; Anders went on to make several notable features, including Gas Food Lodging and Grace of My Heart.
by Mark Deming synopsis