Sean Astin, left) sneaks out to brief the adults.
When they turn out to be ineffectual, Billy and his friends, including comic relief Snuffy (21-year old Keith Coogan, middle) and surly bodybuilder Ricky (19-year old George Perez, right), go on the offensive, incapacitating several terrorists, disabling their bomb, and leading the younger kids to safety, just in time to be "rescued."
Other boys include the rich "jerk" Joey (19-year old Wil Wheaton, well known for playing Wesley Crusher on Star Trek: the Next Generation).
And T. E. Russell as the pragmatic Hank.
Sean Astin (Billy) was a major teen idol of the period, with roles in The Goonies, The War of the Roses, White Water Summer, and Rudy).
Keith Coogan (Snuffy) was a former child star with credits in Adventures in Babysitting and The Book of Love.
There's some buddy-bonding between Billy and Snuffy, but with a large ensemble cast, it's not well developed.
However, heterosexual interest is absent, except for a scene in which Billy confiscates a Playboy from one of the younger kids. There are references to getting laid and masturbation, but no one mentions a girlfriend or a desire for girls.
Absence of expressed heterosexual desire is almost unheard-off in a teen movie of the 1990s, giving viewers permission to read one or more of the boys -- or all of them -- as gay.
And the parade of underwear-clad, towel-clad, and shirtless teenage muscle (or rather young adult muscle, since all of the actors were over 18) didn't hurt.
Sean Astin would go on to lasting fame as Sam Gamgee in The Lord of the Rings.
Keith Coogan now hosts The Call Sheet, a celebrity interview podcast.
Both are vocal gay allies.