Wednesday, 8 June 2011

GROUND ZERO: DEADLY WAVE (2008)

Movie & TV Mistress here again.

I recently watched a film called Ground Zero: Deadly Wave on SyFy channel, if you try to look this up online the movie comes up as Polar Opposites or Deadly Shift; another one of those made for SyFy movies with multiple titles.

I was in the mood for a dodgy sci fi film and SyFy with it's silly name never seems to let me down, in the middle of the night they aired this film and it stars Charles Shaughnessy from The Nanny and Mom's Got a Date with a Vampire it also has Tracy Nelson aka Stevie from The Father Dowling Mysteries and other familiar faces from TV and movies.

The premise is that a nuclear bomb is exploded in Iran and this sets off a series of Earthquakes and the end of the world by shifting the magnetic poles of the Earth.

So we get the typical bad CGI effects to show the explosions and Earthquakes at the start of the film and that's it really, this surprised me after seeing films like mega-shark and Octoshark which relied so heavily on CGI.

But on with the film. Charles's character is a scientist called David Terran who published a book about his theory of shifting poles, how that also assisted in the death of the dinosaurs and how it may happen again. He was shunned by the scientific community for these theories and has left his wife and lives in the middle of nowhere with his father. His old friend and brother In law, Martin, is also a scientist who observes the atmosphere and satellites. He is the first to witness the effects of the underground nuclear explosion on the atmosphere, with the increase of radiation around the world.

David's ex wife, Jenna, is a doctor working in a chemotherapy clinic, all her patients who have finished chemotherapy and are in remission start falling ill with symptoms like radiation poisoning.

While these three sub-plots are going on we see the white house situation room and government officials trying to work out what they should do in relation to the nuclear bomb test in Iran, as usual in films the government wants to shoot then ask questions, but thanks to the rise in radiation noticed by Martin they delay this and investigate how this might affect there decision. They go to see Martin, he tells them that David knows more about this issue. David has already worked out what’s happening without computers and high tech gear when General Railen and Martin arrive and explains that there are multiple magnetic fields which leads to the poles shift and the Earth will flip over meaning the end of Mankind.

David has resigned himself to dying and that the world will end, when Martin arrives with the general but after some discussion and apologies from Martin they decide to be with Jenna as the world ends. The general does not want to give up on saving the world, but with the satellites down the mobiles and internet are no longer working so she can't contact the president. On the way to Jenna's Clinic they go to Martin's lab which has been destroyed by more Earthquakes, they discover the Earth is trying to stabilise itself but if the American government deploys another bomb to Iran the world will not be able to fix itself.

Everybody gets to Jenna's clinic, there they discover a way of contacting the president situation room with the information and prevent the planed attack on Iran and the world is saved by doing nothing.

I was actually surprised and slightly disappointed because this film wasn't as bad as I had expected, It has likeable characters and good performances from the actors and very little SFX. The let down of the film is the lack of perspective, which though different from other disaster films, it only relies on America being affected by this disaster and to save the world. In a big budget movie like this you would see the rest of the world being affected, if not real it would be on the news but there is never any mention of it. The science in the story seems to make sense, but I think that shows good writing or good acting.

I would not tell people to go out of their way to watch this film but I would say it is one of the better made and performed films shown on the SyFy channel. Hopefully the next film I watch on SyFy will be one of those bad ones I was expecting, but maybe I should stick to watching the Horror channel where I can guarantee a bad film or two.

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