- Audience-Alienating Premise: The mix of rom-com with apocalypse didn't really suited anyone back in the day. And after initial weekend, which wasn't so bad, the knowledge about extreme case of Downer Ending killed off any audience the film could still get.
- Awesome Music: The score by Tangerine Dream.
- Critical Dissonance: The film was highly praised even when it was still just a script. It's hard to find even average critical reviews, not to mention bad, yet the film absolutely bombed in the box office and would be forgotten if not the VHS release.
- Cult Classic: The film performed miserably at the box office, but was well reviewed, and subsequently developed a following.
- Ending Aversion: The story could be the textbook example of Shoot the Shaggy Dog. Not only Chip was telling the truth, meaning a global-scale nuclear holocaust, but everything Harry does throughout the story ultimately goes in vein and gets him and Julie killed. Upon original run in theatres, this killed the movie dead in the box office.
- Possibly lessened if you believe He's Just Hiding!, given that we don't know where in the city the missile would hit, which could give them a slight chance of survival.
- Nightmare Fuel:
- Los Angeles becomes a complete hellhole roughly an hour after Harry receives the phone call. Looting, rioting, several car accidents, murder, and lawlessness in general plague the streets as hundreds of thousands of people panic at the idea that a nuclear war could be underway. Harry is understandably horrified to know that the city has delved into chaos all because of a phone call that may or may not have been authentic.
- The phone call itself is quite chilling, as Chips is gunned down after stating that a nuclear war is about to occur within the hour, with the next person who picks up the phone telling Harry to forget what he's heard and go back to sleep. Harry isn't sure whether it's a prank call or not, and is visibly shaken up upon hearing it. It's real.
- Periphery Demographic: A disproportionately large part of the fandom is made from Tangerine Dream fans, as they've provided one of their better soundtracks to the film.
- Tear Jerker:
- Harry and Julie fail to escape Los Angeles in time, dying as their helicopter sinks into the tar pits and a nuclear war destroys the city.
- Wilson, the car thief, cradling his dying sister in his arms, sobbing and begging Harry to kill him.
- Chips, the man on the phone in the beginning, tries to warn his father about the upcoming nuclear apocalypse, only to realize that he dialed the wrong number and frantically tries to get Harry to call his father before being gunned down.
YMMV / Miracle Mile