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This made for the small screen movie in the disaster genre may have
been full of questionable scientific facts but accepting things as you
were given them, then the acting and general tempo were okay. There are
some movies where it is best not to ask too many questions just sit
back and be entertained - this was one of them. The lack of big star
cast did not seem to detract from the effect and though clearly shot on
a small budget (the snowflakes were so fake!) it was reasonable
A group of miscellaneous stereotypes, the white macho law enforcer, the black criminal with the chip on his shoulder who's not so bad once you get to know him, the mad professor who's not likable at all, the ex and the new lover with the new boyfriend. Plenty scope for character development, though much of it was predictable. As a huge freeze-up almost in no time seems to plunge Los Angeles into Arctic frigidity people seem to die frozen at the wheels of their cars or anywhere else as if completely unexpected. Our super-heros seem to be able to move around with relatively little extra clothing only the occasional leg wrapping or blanket as a token towards the predicament.
The general "plot" is that a rescue ship is being sent to pick up our disagreeable scientist and our group seem to think this is the best option they have of escaping from the freeze-up so a purpose and direction is created, however thin and questionable it may seem. We seem to accept much science fiction which is far more questionable, take the Star Wars nonsense for example, yet here we have a plausible scenario. The sun could throw a wobbly and the effects on our planet could be life-threatening, I have no problem with the subject matter. I would not buy the DVD however but have seen a lot worse than ICE.
I recently saw ICE on the Sci-Fi channel and was pleasantly surprised
by how good it was. The writing is superb. The characters are unique
and believable within the science-fiction disaster context of the rapid
cooling of the atmosphere.
Several scenes are extremely similar to scenes in THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, in particular the final scene with the president, and using books to fuel the fire. Tiny details are what make a script work, and this one is chock full of them, the interplay between Officer Drake and his ex-wife and current girlfriend, the ex-wife's new husband, Greg, an intellectual who cannot accept the loss of civilization, the various people met along the way as established order breaks down and as the characters fight for one last hope of survival. The scene in which Officer Drake convinces his girlfriend to join the others rather than stay with him (and presumably die) is extremely moving. This film is one of the best character studies in a disaster context I have seen. All the characters are vivid, three-dimensional portrayals, bickering, arguing, conniving, negotiating, being courageous and self-sacrificing, and ultimately depending upon one another for their survival.
My only disappointment with the film is that the producer decided to dub Udo Kier's voice to give his character a more American accent. This is a deep flaw in an otherwise tremendously satisfying film. Udo Kier is a cult-film hero, and his voice, as sibilant and Germanic as it is, is a pleasure to the ear. "Kistler" sounds German enough to justify a German accent, so why the dubbing?
Well, after the relative fail of a marketing bluff such as The Day After Tomorrow, I think it is time to concede some merit to this cheap, earlier movie that, in my humble opinion, developed a much more convincing story about a new Ice Age. Just wonder what could have be done with THIS script and The Day After Tomorrow resources? I simply must say that I felt much colder watching at this movie. The loneliness of the characters, some believable fights for the survival... all of this made the characters convincing and the whole story acceptable. Besides, this movie just was interested in COLD, and not in POLITICS. Quite entertaining. I rated it a 7
The big surprise? This is the very first "made-for-cable" movie I have ever watched start-to-finish. Granted, there wasn't much else on the other 130 channels this particular evening, but these SciFi Channel productions are generally so tedious that I'm gone before the first commercial break. This turkey DID have a few redeeming features: an attractive (physically) cast; acceptable computer effects; and spritely pacing (for a Cable feature). Yes, I know the plot holes were far too frequent and there were far too many uncalled-for characters, but I'm a sucker for "end of the world" genre and this one was only marginally worse than Armageddon. 2 1/2 stars out of 5 (5 out of 5 stars for a SciFi Potboiler).
If not mistaken I think this is a Sci-Fi Network original. A story kind of
silly, but provoking. Reality is doubtful. The earth becomes a deep freeze
in a modern Ice Age after the sun develops numerous sunspots. Sunny
California within two days looks more like the South Pole with frigid temps
well below zero. LAPD officer Grant Show with the aid of a petty
criminal(Flex Alexander)he recently put in jail leads a small group of
people that includes his girlfriend, son, ex-wife and her recent husband to
Joined by the scientist(Udo Kier),who discovered this catastrophe, the small group are hopeful to find safety near the Equator region which seems to be as far south as the frigid temps reach. Snow of course is the main scenery and tempts you to grab a blanket. For some reason my favorite scene is when The President(Art Hindle) is prompted to leave D.C., but only after respecting a painting of George Washington crossing the Delaware.
Also appearing are: Eva LaRue, Audie England and Diego Fuentes. Although the story line being quite contrived, ICE none the less is able to hold your interest. Grant Show is still as bland an actor as he was on TV's Melrose Place.
I was actually impressed by this. It's nothing spectacular, of course,
but it's better than a lot of stuff in the apocalyptic genre that makes
it to the big screen. Well-paced, well-acted (although the characters
are slightly annoying), and good FX; you can't ask for much more than
that. Plus I found the idea of people in LA faced with an ice age
My main complaint is that the details of the weather change are abrasively inaccurate. I doubt any Hollywood person actually knows what cold weather is like. I had the same problems with the recent "Alien vs. Predator," where the characters apparently don't need anything more than a light jacket to stay warm and toasty in Antarctica. Here, we have people walking around in negative 60 degree weather without hats or gloves on, and they are perfectly fine (seriously, they'd be dead in five minutes). The thing that irritated me most was when two people came indoors after being outside in the frigid cold, obviously about to die, and yet they are still able to dexterously move their fingers. Give me a break. At that point they wouldn't even HAVE fingers.
Well, personal complaints aside, it's not a bad film, and I suppose it is a notable addition to the mediocre natural disaster genre.
I saw Ice on June 12, 2004. Shortly after that I started seeing ads for
DAT. I thought maybe DAT was a remake. Was I ever wrong! 'Ice' is much
more like a rough draft, and DAT the finished product. I had the
pleasure of seeing DAT August 4, 2004. 'Ice' reminds me of the good old
days of disaster films, like Poseidon Adventure. Very hokey and
extremely low budget! Was PA actually low budget? Who knows? Who cares?
It also seemed like 'Ice' had a mixed language cast, so some people
were dubbed and some people spoke English. There seems to be some made
for SciFi channel/ German connection. Maybe their actors don't charge
Enjoyable to watch if you have really NOTHING better to do! 'Ice' should absolutely be included in any list of disaster movies if you are a disaster fan.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
***Spoilers!!*** Specific plots points are discussed herein!!
An ice age sneaks up on North America akin to a bad cold front. Our hero is LAPD bad boy Robert Drake, played by Grant Show of `Melrose Place' fame. Grant Show's IMDB bio starts off `Never really considered acting a profession.' Really? The writing is along the same lines as the acting. There is this racial tension between this cop and Kelvin the black guy that has clearly been written by middle class dudes as white as the snow. Speaking of race, the Hispanic sidekick of our LAPD hero is named Zapata. What, that's like the only Mexican name they could come up with? Viva Zapata! Or not in this case since the mysterious Dr. Kistler shows up and shoots Zapata 10 minutes into the film. So we got t he black dude ex- con and a dead Mexican cop sidekick named Zapata so we are pretty much covered on racial diversity thing in LA right? Lets move on.
Dr. Kistler must be uber important since a submarine is all preset to come take him to someplace warmer. So important that he drives a 1978 Volvo and has three sheets of paper in his brief case. It's an email print out that says meet the submarine in Malibu and a color Xerox of the earth and that days shooting schedule. They had $3.00 for props I guess.
Not as lucky as the good doctor, the President is back at the White House standing in front of a picture of Washington crossing the Delaware. An aid says they have to leave DC now or they will die if they stay in the capital so the president waxes on about Washington's surprise Christmas Eve attack of the British. What does this have to do with this story? Nothing, other than it was cold then too apparently. Speaking of cold, are hero Robert Drake wears jeans, tennis shoes and a leather jacket. Clearly he's an LA native, but c'mon.
Dr. Kistler, the cop with his son, girlfriend, ex-wife, her husband and ex-con Kelvin track across LA to meet up with the sub. Thankfully the LAPD has this giant snow mobile tracker although it doesn't run very well. There is this side story where they pull the broken down snow tracker into a bank and meet this rich couple. A rich couple in the bank. Get it? The rich guy tells this story about his father who donated money to a hospital and had a wing named after him, but when they went there during this freak cold so the wife could have a baby the hospital turns them away due to lack of space. The rich guy is glad that his money wasn't wasted on such philanthropic pursuits and that it is here, in cash, at the bank so they can make a fire with it. This is symbolic for something I'm sure. Don't donate your money to good causes or screenplay writing classes maybe? Oh god, the frostbite is entering my brain.
Eventually our band of Angelinos makes it to the sub prescheduled to pick up Dr. Kistler in Malibu. Dr. Kistler was killed a couple scenes ago, so someone else pretends to be him. Who notices right? 'I left my driver's license back at the lab with my briefcase with three sheets of paper in it.' This doctor is so important the sub is here for him but no one knows who he is or what he looks like. `I'm doctor so and so,' someone else from the group says and that's that.
Once they scam their way onto the sub, they have to convince the captain to allow them to go back and pick up our main hero Robert Drake who got shot in the leg a mile back. There is a emotional scene, `we aren't leaving without this boys father blah, blah, blah.' Without reflecting on the hundreds of millions of Americans already turned in popsicles, the captain says OK, you can have the snowmobiles for...whatever cliché .45 minutes, and then we are leaving with or without you. The sub is waiting 45 minutes surfaced to see if the get any new instructions. Like what, go pick up Dr. Kevorkian next? We already found previously in the film there is no government or chain of command so who they waiting to hear from is beside the point because you're thinking too much kind viewer. 45 minutes, then they are leaving -GOT IT! Hurry! Hurry! Oh dear sweet Lord, please don't leave our hero Robert Drake die with that copy of Dante's Inferno in the broken down snow tracker. Get this- Dante's Inferno -cuz hell can not only be hot, but also really cold and icy LIKE IN THIS MOVIE! Do you get it? Should I explain it again?
Do they make it back to the sub in time? Who cares? The most memorable line is from Dr. Kistler in the bank scene, `But I need another blanket, I'm cold!' Me too doc, I've just flat lined from watching this silly mess.
I honestly don't understand the poor ratings and harsh criticism this film has received, for I enjoyed it immensely. As a matter of fact I think ICE is better than the big budget "meteor"-films that were made in the nineties. In a pleasantly predictable way, the straightforward plot captures the struggle of the survivors in a frozen world. I did find it a bit too concise... but great fun nonetheless!
I loved this movie. It was original and very thought out, the plot was great and the actors were brilliant. The movies that are coming out about the same are not the same. This is a one of a kind and I am trying to find a replacement so that I can buy it. I can watch this movie non stop repeatedly. There is thought into it and even though the feelings of the actors to each other may be different, that is what makes the movie better. In the end, it is all that matters is that family is family and they stuck together through thick and thin and made it all together. It just goes to show what people would really do and could do to survive and to help and save their family even if it is not blood family. They stuck it out and saved each other. That is the best part. The movie was well though and the actors were well picked for their part and this is one of my all time favorite movies. If anyone can find it, please let me know.
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