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I don't know why this is driving me so crazy. I only saw the ending, and the most memorable thing about it was how bad the special effects were. I think I'm wondering whether the plot makes any more sense if you watch the whole movie.

Anyway, there was this military-survivalist-type guy, a woman, and a teenage boy. The survivalist guy has this vehicle that looks like a cross between a camper van and a bullet; it's designed to withstand the imminent global flood that apparently only these three are expecting and no one else is aware of.

There was some weird name for the vehicle, but I forget what it was, "The __ _ _ __" I think it had four syllables, possibly ending in "er". They got into it on dry land, and the flood waters rose around them, apparently miles deep.

External shots of the vehicle showed it tumbling end over end, but internal shots just showed some mild jostling and the three of them just standing there looking bored. Maybe it had artificial gravity?

Anyway, the miles-deep flood waters recede (the impression I got was that in-world, the flood lasted maybe fifteen minutes, if that.) They find themselves on dry land, I think on some sort of college campus, with all the buildings intact.

They pick up some music on the radio, and then the (young-female-sounding) DJ comes on, gives her location, and then says she's pausing the broadcast to allow for incoming signals from other survivors. It's all very matter-of-fact, like civilization-destroying flash-floods happen all the time. She apparently safely rode out the flood in the college's radio studio.

Military-guy tries to take charge of the situation, and responds to the radio-signal, but teenage-boy is very excited to hear the woman's voice and jumps on a bike and heads off to meet her as soon as she gives her location. Roll credits.

I don't think survivalist-guy and teenage-boy got along very well, but I didn't see enough of their interaction to say for sure.

I saw (the ending of it) on television in either the late eighties or the early nineties. I don't recall there being anything that indicated for sure whether it was a newish movie or an older one, so I'm not sure when it was made.

  • So, you're pretty certain it's a two word title, like "The Waterdriver"? – FuzzyBoots Oct 31 '17 at 16:02
  • just to be clear, the name of the vehicle, not the title of the moivie :). I don't know that I ever knew the movie title. And the vehicle name was more unusual than just being two everyday words combined together. – LindaJeanne Oct 31 '17 at 16:09
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This is almost certainly the movie version of "Damnation Alley." The "Winnebago submarine" you describe is the Landmaster, an armored all-terrain vehicle the protagonists acquire and use to cross the radiation-ravage post-nuclear United States, looking for survivors they've faintly heard on shortwave. The scene you described with the woman broadcasting, then pausing for incoming signals, is near the end, when they've reached New Hampshire and an area that appears almost untouched by the destruction.

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    I think this may be it -- which would mean that I totally missed the point by seeing just the ending (no wonder I couldn't find it looking for movies about floods!). Since I hear it's poor form to mark a top answer too quickly, I'll wait to see if someone comes up with something else that more closely matches my memory, but I suspect you're going to get the green check :) – LindaJeanne Oct 31 '17 at 16:44
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    @LindaJeanne I'd strongly recommend reading the novel(ette) that this was based on: same title, by Roger Zelazny. It's a much better and more internally consistent story than the movie. I think the only part of the movie I liked better was the Landmaster (rolligons are far superior to simple large wheels). And don't forget to find and listen to the song, "Damnation Alley", by Hawkwind (which predates the movie, if I'm remembering correctly). Available on YouTube. – Zeiss Ikon Oct 31 '17 at 16:50

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