Scientist and climate expert David Koch (Jeff Fahey - Icon) has uncovered that the last Ice Age was caused by a shift in the planet's polarity and, after a trip to the Arctic to consult on a discovery, he is convinced that we are on the verge of another Ice Age. But despite his expertise no one is listening to his warnings and so when Miami turns from a summer paradise to a winter wonderland everything is thrown into turmoil. The only hope for David is if he, an old girlfriend, Bryn (Erika Eleniak - Second to Die), along with a few others make it to a special chamber at a research centre before temperatures plummet to absolute zero.
It only seems like yesterday that we got "The Day After Tomorrow" and with it a plethora of inferior clones. But whilst many are quick to disparage these knock off disaster movies I believe, when taken in the spirit of being the b-movies that they are, they deliver a certain level of enjoyably bad entertainment. That brings me to "Absolute Zero" which as the title hints, the planet is going to get another cold snap, the mother of all cold snaps which is going to be a game changer for the planet as a new Ice Age beckons. Yes it sounds like a rip-off but it doesn't try to hide it and like other made for TV disaster movies "Absolute Zero" is as much about what doesn't work and what is corny as it is about what works which frankly is not much.
To put that in to context "Absolute Zero" starts with a research team at the Arctic and in a rip-off of "The Day After Tomorrow" a crevice forms in the ice, but here one guy falls to his death whilst all the other scientists just watch on. There are more rip-off scenes but also formula driven drama as no one in power wants to listen to David's concerns over the polarity shifting impending doom. I could go on but "Absolute Zero" is simply stereotypical of the made for TV disaster movie genre and as such has all the familiar elements from poorly written characters and dialogue to less than impressive special effects whilst lacking a grip on realism when it comes to the chaos when it starts.
But what "Absolute Zero", and some other made for TV disaster movies, has is the right tone which starts with its actors and especially Jeff Fahey. Fahey delivers a performance which combines "I am getting paid so I will try and make it work" with "I know this is a b-movie so I won't take myself too seriously". It is the same with the rest of the actors and in essence they deliver the sort of aware performances which for me make an entertaining b-movie.
What this all boils down to is that "Absolute Zero" is in truth just another made for TV disaster movie which comes up short when compared to the big screen movies that it is obviously influenced by. But taken in the spirit which these types of b-movies should be then thanks to the aware performances of its stars and in particular Jeff Fahey "Absolute Zero" becomes entertaining.