When science whiz Mitch Taylor (Gabe Jarret) arrives at Pacific Tech as a freshman, he’s paired up with genius senior Chris Knight (Val Kilmer) to work on a laser project. Mitch initially doesn’t care for Knight’s slacker attitude, but is eventually won over, and their friendship allows them to make new progress on the laser project. It’s only when the boys learn that the government intends to use the laser as a weapon that they start to question what they’ve actually been working for.
Geeky college students Gilbert (Anthony Edwards) and Lewis (Robert Carradine) are evicted from their dormitory when the Alpha Betas — who recently burned down their own fraternity house by accident — confiscate the building. When the college forces the freshmen to live in the gym, Gilbert, Lewis and their fellow dorks relocate to a run-down house. When the Alpha Betas, led by jock Stan (Ted McGinley), repeatedly humiliate them, the nerd’s plot revenge.
Teen misfits Gary (Anthony Michael Hall) and Wyatt (Ilan Mitchell-Smith) design their ideal woman on a computer, and a freak electrical accident brings her to life in the form of the lovely, superhuman Lisa (Kelly LeBrock). She outfits Gary and Wyatt in cool clothes, surprises them with a Porsche and helps them stand up to jerks Ian (Robert Downey Jr.) and Max (Robert Rusler). But, all the while, the boys must hide Lisa’s existence from Chet (Bill Paxton), Wyatt’s nightmare of a big brother.