A group of gay and lesbian teen characters addresses the camera directly in this pseudo-documentary about the travails of queer adolescence in early-'90s Los Angeles.
Andy (James Duval), who hides his sensitive side beneath a nihilistic exterior, really yearns to find a nice boyfriend and settle down the way his pal Steven (Gilbert Luna), an aspiring filmmaker, has with boyfriend Deric (Lance May). Meanwhile, their sex-crazed friend Tommy (Roko Belic) has been kicked out by his parents for being homosexual.
The only seemingly carefree members of this adoptive family are Michele (Susan Behshid) and Patricia (Jenee Gill), a lesbian couple whose desire to raise a child together leads the boys to participate in a group sperm donation during one of the film's many scenes of these characters just hanging out and rapping about AIDS, fag-bashing, homophobia, and alienation.
In-between polemicizing and posing in front of Steven's camera for interviews, Andy meets college student Ian (Alan Boyce), who seems, at least for a while, to be Mr. Right. Just as Andy and Ian's relationship begins to blossom, Steven and Deric's starts to fall apart, but nothing's for certain in director Gregg Araki's angst-ridden world.
Framed as 15 vignettes, each one introduced by an ironic intertitle and many of them interspersed with graphic sexual and commercial images, Totally F***ed Up marked the end of Araki's no-budget phase; the glossy, gaudy Doom Generation would follow two years later.