Times Square is a 1980 American drama film directed by Allan Moyle and starring Trini Alvarado and Robin Johnson as teenage runaways from opposite sides of the tracks and Tim Curry as a radio DJ. The film is set in New York City. The plot embodies a punk rock ethic of misunderstood youth articulating their frustrations toward adult authority through music.
Nicky Marotta and Pamela Pearl are two teenage girls who meet in the New York Neurological Hospital, where both are being examined for mental illness. Pamela is depressed and insecure, and neglected and exploited by her father, David Pearl, a prominent and wealthy commissioner running a campaign to "clean up" Times Square. Nicky is a tough-talking street kid with musical aspirations, sent to the hospital for an evaluation after an altercation with police. Sharing a room, the brash Nicky and shy Pamela become friends. Nicky admires Pamela's poetic spirit; Pamela admires Nicky's forthright attitude and resents the condescending way in which the doctors treat her. Nicky is released from the hospital and later returns, ostensibly for an appointment with her social worker Rosie Washington, but really to break Pamela out. Both girls escape the hospital, steal an ambulance, and hide out in abandoned warehouse on the Chelsea Piers, making a pact to scream out each other's names in times of trouble.
There is a citywide search for Pamela after David reports her missing and accuses Nicky of kidnapping her, claiming Pamela needs medical attention. Meanwhile, the girls try to eke out a living by engaging in card games, petty theft, odd jobs, and scavenging. Radio DJ Johnny LaGuardia, who broadcasts from a penthouse studio overlooking Times Square, realizes that David's missing daughter is the same "Zombie Girl" who sent him letters, telling him how sad and insecure she feels. LaGuardia, who resents David's "Reclaim Rebuild Restore" campaign to gentrify Times Square, uses his radio station, WJAD, to reach out to Nicky and Pamela. The girls start writing songs together and form an underground punk rock band, named The Sleez Sisters, with the help of LaGuardia, who sees them as an opportunity to undermine David. When an open letter to Pamela from Rosie is printed in the newspaper (with the help of David), calling Nicky troubled and dangerous, the girls perform a defiant Sleez Sisters song live on WJAD, making them even more famous. As an act of further rebellion, Nicky and Pamela throw TVs off a series of rooftops in the city.
Pamela and Nicky eventually have a falling out when they realize that their lives are on divergent paths. Pamela is content with her newfound sense of identity and wants to return home. Nicky wants to continue with The Sleez Sisters and becomes jealous of Pamela's relationship with LaGuardia. One night, she accuses LaGuardia of exploiting Pamela and herself, and throws LaGuardia and Pamela out of the warehouse hideout. Nicky then has a breakdown, wrecking her home and destroying the journal she shared with Pamela. After a failed attempt to drown herself, Nicky drunkenly breaks into WJAD and demands that LaGuardia put her on the air (but, unknown to Nicky, he never does). Midway through her song, Nicky breaks down and asks Pamela for help, shouting out her name. A sympathetic LaGuardia takes Pamela to Nicky. Pamela, breaking ties with LaGuardia, takes Nicky to David's office, located in the middle of Times Square. Pamela calls all the local radio stations, announcing an impromptu, and illegal, midnight show in Times Square on the rooftop of a grindhouse on 42nd Street. A message is sent to the fans of The Sleez Sisters, inviting them to attend the concert. Nicky says "If they treat you like garbage, put on a garbage bag. If they treat you like a bandit, black out your eyes!" Girls across the city heed Nicky's call and board buses and subways to converge in Times Square.
In a garbage-bag costume and bandit-mask-style makeup, Nicky sings on the marquee roof above a crowd of cheering fans, also in garbage bags with "bandit" makeup. With the police approaching from behind, Nicky jumps off the edge of the marquee and into a blanket held taut by a group of fans. Camouflaged in the crowd, Nicky manages to evade capture by the police. Pamela watches her friend vanish into the