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[[caption-width-right:200:[[PreAssKickingOneLiner If you were me, you'd be good-lookin'.]] *snap*]]
->''"Only one man could kill this many Russians. Bring his Guitar to me!"''
-->-- '''Death''', observing the results of [[CurbStompBattle our Hero's confrontation with the Red Army.]]

In an alternate world, Russia and the U.S. nearly destroyed each other in nuclear war in 1957, with only a couple of remaining outposts of civilization left. The most prominent is [[UsefulNotes/LasVegas Lost Vegas,]] ruled by Music/ElvisPresley. However, "after 40 rockin' years, the King is dead."

The position of King is now open, and a katana-wielding guitarist named Buddy is out to take the throne. Along the way, though, he has to fight off the other pretenders, Communist bowlers, the entire Russian Army, and Death in the form of... [[Music/GunsNRoses Slash]].

Also along the way, he has to deal with a TagalongKid that ends up teaching him that being the King is about more than rocking and fighting.

!!This movie has examples of:

* AfterTheEnd - Complete with ''MadMax'' style neo-barbarians.
* AlternateHistory, the intro text:
-->In 1957, [[ApocalypseHow the bomb dropped]], and the Russians took over what was America.
-->The last bastion of freedom became a place called [[UsefulNotes/LasVegas Lost Vegas]] and [[Music/ElvisPresley Elvis]] was crowned King.
-->After forty rockin' years, The King is dead.
-->Every guitar picking, sword swinging opportunist, including [[TheGrimReaper Death himself]], hears the call echoing across the wastelands.
* ArrowCatch: When Death's minions (who all use bows with [[BottomlessMagazines unlimited arrows]]) chances upon Buddy when he's separated from his sword, he appears to just be dodging their ATeamFiring. When he gets up from one of his rolls, however, he throws away a bundle of arrows in each hand.
* ArtisticLicenseHistory: Buddy Holly was born in 1936 so he would have been over sixty by the time of the movie. [[spoiler: Of course, the ending could well mean the Buddy of the film is a LegacyCharacter.]]
* BadassAndChildDuo: Buddy and The Kid hit the major notes - stoic AntiHero type who first meets the orphaned child when he saves him from death, cynicism slowly melts away as the child becomes closer, the kid helps out with some support roles, and [[spoiler: the Badass has a HeroicSacrifice to save the child at the end.]]
* CannibalClan - Who look and (try to) act like a stereotypical ''Series/FatherKnowsBest''-style [[TheFifties '50's]] nuclear family.
* CaptainErsatz - Buddy and Death are Captain Ersatzes of, respectively, Music/BuddyHolly and [[Music/GunsNRoses Slash]].
** Although judging from what we see, Buddy might actually ''be'' the real Buddy Holly.
* DanceBattler - Buddy uses dance during his swordfights to, well, swordfight.
* EnemiesWithDeath - Fighting a rock'n'roll sword duel against him? Can't get much more literal.
* TheFifties - What's left of society still looks like it, since the nuclear war took place then - and most everywhere is far from recovered even four decades later.
* GangOfHats: The Pin Pals, a gang of murderous bowlers with bowling ball flails and knives hidden in pins. And the Red Elvises, a communist rock'n'roll band who work for Death.
* TheGrimReaper - happens to look like [[Music/GunsNRoses Slash]].
* HeroicBSOD: After Buddy has a rematch with the guy he had earlier taken out with an OffhandBackhand, he realizes that AsskickingEqualsAuthority isn't the way to become a good person or a good ruler, throwing aside his guitar and sword and saying "I've got to get a new gig."
* ImAHumanitarian - Buddy tries to drop the kid off with a family like this.
* InvadedStatesOfAmerica: Remnants of the Russian Army are in what is left of the United States. They're not in much better shape than anyone else, though.
* KatanasAreJustBetter: The two best swordsmen in the film are Buddy and Death, and both use katanas to cut down everyone in their path, particularly anyone foolish enough to use something that isn't a katana (like the entire Russian army).
* LawyerFriendlyCameo - Many of the prominent characters are evocative of various musicians. Most obvious is Buddy for Music/BuddyHolly and Death for [[Music/GunsNRoses Slash]].
* TheLoad - That damn kid. Yeah, yeah, he occasionally does something useful, and ThePowerOfFriendship and all that. Still, notice that ''every single time'' Buddy gets hurt, it's directly or indirectly the kid's fault.
** ''waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh!''
** Lampshaded by Death's minions: "The boy! The boy makes him ''very'' uncool!"
* OffhandBackhand: One challenger (who might be Music/RitchieValens) tries to challenge Buddy at one point when Buddy is more focused on helping the Kid. Buddy does a OneHitKO with this to show how serious he is.
* OneManArmy - Buddy versus the remnants of the Russian Army. See the quote above if you have any questions as to who won.
* ParentalAbandonment - The Kid's mother is killed before his eyes at the beginning; he latches onto Buddy in part because Buddy killed his mother's killer.
* ThePowerOfFriendship - [[spoiler:When Death finally catches up to Buddy, Buddy willingly throws away his guitar pick, to concede in his quest to become King. But Death refuses, saying that he's really after what Buddy values most. Realizing that means The Kid, Buddy yells, "You can't have him!"]] Which leads up to...
* ThePowerOfRock: [[spoiler: ... an epic guitar-playing duel where Death and Buddy try to show who's more worthy of becoming King with sweet guitar solos.]]
* RockMeAmadeus: An electric-guitar version of Brahms' ''Hungarian Dance No. 5'' shows up in the soundtrack about halfway through.
* SamuraiCowboy: It's a post-apocalypse Western with a samurai Buddy Holly as the protagonist.
* TagalongKid: The unnamed Kid, who follows Buddy throughout the film even when Buddy threatens him. He latches onto Buddy when Buddy kills the men who killed The Kid's mother.
* TakeUpMySword - [[spoiler:At the end of the movie, the Kid literally takes up Buddy's sword, along with his guitar, suit, and glasses. The final scene of the movie is him literally ''turning into'' Buddy as he walks towards Lost Vegas. Straightforward symbolism? Or [[WildMassGuessing has Buddy's spirit done this before]]? Perhaps a {{Justified}} trope since the actual Buddy Holly would have been much older by that point.]]
* VivaLasVegas - Lost Vegas is the last great bastion of civilization in the US.
* TheVoiceless - The Kid [[spoiler:until about halfway through the movie; [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] by Buddy immediately and later on.]]
* WeaksauceWeakness - [[spoiler: In an {{Homage}} to ''Film/TheWizardOfOz'', Death is killed by getting wet.]]
* WhyDontYaJustShootHim - [[JustifiedTrope Justified]] and [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]], as the Russians ran out of bullets decades ago.
* YouAreBetterThanYouThinkYouAre: How the Kid breaks Buddy out of his HeroicBSOD - as a reminder of the good Buddy can do (since Buddy saved his life), he brings back the guitar and sword to Buddy and says, "You can still be a good King."
* YouHaveFailedMe - Done by Death to some of his minions (local "[[NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly Soviet Rockabilly Surf Band]]" The Red Elvises). The StockPhrase is interrupted when he sees their (nice) shoes, which he takes with him.