In a rural town in Texas, go-go dancer Cherry Darling decides to quit her low-paying job and find another use for her numerous “useless” talents. She runs into mysterious ex-boyfriend El Wray at the Bone Shack, a restaurant owned by J. T. Hague. Meanwhile, a group of military officials, led by the demented Lt. Muldoon, are making a business transaction with a scientist named Abby for mass quantities of a deadly biochemical agent known as DC2 (codename “Project Terror”). Muldoon learns that Abby has an extra supply on hand and attempts to take him hostage. Abby intentionally releases the gas into the air. The gas reaches the town and turns its residents into deformed bloodthirsty, man-eating psychopaths, mockingly referred to as “sickos” by the surviving humans. The infected townspeople are treated by the sinister Dr. William Block and his abused, neglected anesthesiologist wife Dakota at a local hospital. As the patients quickly become enraged aggressors, Cherry and El Wray lead a team of accidental warriors into the night, struggling to find safety.
Three friends – Arlene, Shanna, and radio disc jockey “Jungle” Julia – spend a night in Austin, Texas for fun, unknowingly followed by a mysterious man in a souped-up 1971 Chevy Nova. The man, Stuntman Mike, stalks the young women with his “death proof” car, eventually killing all three. Fourteen months later, Stuntman Mike, now in Tennessee and driving a 1969 Dodge Charger, tails another group of young women – Lee, Abernathy, and stuntwomen Kim and Zoë – a group of women working below the line in Hollywood, whose stock 1970 Dodge Challenger proves a worthy adversary.