A ChucksConnection Film Review


Tyler Johnston wears black low cut Converse “Chuck Taylor” All Stars in the film.

Polar Storm

By Brandon L. Summers


James Mayfield explains the danger the world is facing

James Mayfield explains the danger the world is facing to his wife and son.


Polar Storm shamelessly rips off the plot of The Core and the drama of The Day After Tomorrow to deliver a low-budget guilty pleasure for fans of the disaster movie sub-genre. And that’s being very, very generous. Scientist James Mayfield (Jack Coleman) discovers that the impact of a meteor has whacked the earth’s core, and created mini-poles, earthquakes and EMP waves the world over. It starts simply, though, with the sun setting just a bit off and an always accurate sundial being inaccurate. Meanwhile, Mayfield’s son Shane (Tyler Johnston) has a chip on his shoulder because his father is never around and he doesn’t like his stepmother, Cynthia (Holly Elissa Lamaro), who is also his science teacher.


Cynthia, Shane, Zoe, and her father go to escape the epicenter of the storm

Cynthia, Shane, Zoe, and her father go to escape the epicenter of the storm.


Mayfield comes home to his family long enough for him to make his discovery that the world is going bad before he has to go off again to Washington to explain this to the President, his science advisor, and his top general, who also happen’s to be Mayfield’s father (Terry David Mulligan). Mayfield explains the science using a peach cut in half, taken nearly verbatim from The Core. Basically, the core is off and needs to be fixed, otherwise these EMP storms (the film’s idea of storms and their timing is straight from The Day After Tomorrow) will grow colossally stronger. While Mayfield is gone, Shane and stepmom Cynthia are left in the epicenter of this storm, a “mini-pole,” which never sounds credible. They drive into town, but when they see a storm wave coming (a special effect wave that moves at about 20 mph), they turn the car off. If the storm hits your electronic device, you get fatally (and comically) electrocuted. The waves passes over them and their car. “I think it’s passed,” they keep saying.


Shane and Cynthia watch the storm approaching

Shane and Cynthia watch the storm approaching.


Beat for beat from Day After, they’re now trapped in a church by the military under martial law and won’t listen to the science mom’s pleas that they have to get out of the area, specifically out of the large circle her husband drawn on the map. When her map with a circle on it fails to convince the military, she and some others escape. Meanwhile, Mayfield convinces his estranged General dad and the President to take a nuclear bomb to the Marianas Trench to fix the core. The trench is the lowest point on Earth, but it’s also only seven miles deep. Still... It goes without saying, Mayfield and his inexplicable Russian submarine team succeed in their dangerous mission, Shane and his stepmom become closer, and together their small group makes it out of the epicenter (though it’s a moot point), to where Shane’s sort-of girlfriend resides.


Shane and Cynthia fall exhausted on the split pavement

Shane and Cynthia fall exhausted on the split pavement after Shane rescues her.


If you don’t like cheap disaster films, you will hate Polar Storm. You will be astonished by it’s cheap effects, it’s overblown score and startling plagiarism. But, if you do like this subgenre, you will find it an adequate time-passer. The demands for these films aren’t so great. Nobody expects great acting, for instance. Just some melodrama, and for things to get blowed up good. This film delivers just that, minimally. Aside from it’s jarringly bad grasp of science and plagiarism, the thing that really just pissed me off was the three-generational family thing. Completely unnecessary! One family with problems is enough. You don’t need the dad and HIS dad for drama. It could have just been two people bonded by their dangerous mission and the fact that the world’s going to end. It’s a distractingly inept choice. This subgenre can withstand much ineptitude, but that’s much too much. The film is written by Jason Bourque, who wrote the single worst film I’ve ever seen, Game Over (2003, aka Maximum Surge) and director Paul Ziller, who made the similar Solar Attack. They each exclusively work on Asylum-grade films that don’t have the distinction of being “Asylum” films. That alone should inform you of what sort of film you’re in for.


A depressed Shane waits for news about his father

A depressed Shane waits for news about his father.


Best Chucks Scene


Shane is able to jump to safety on the ground Shane tries to get up

After a split in the road swallows up his car along with Kevin and his car, Shane is able to jump to safety on the ground, then tries to get up.


Minutes after Shane is challenged to a drag race by rival student Kevin (Scott Lyster, recently on the “Dual Spires” episode of Psych), an earthquake rips the street apart. As segment descend cleanly amid a low grumble, Shane runs into the forest to safety, carried by his black chucks.


With the chasm widening in the road, Shane tries to keep his balance Shane tries to run away

With the chasm widening in the road, Shane tries to keep his balance, then run away.


Shane running as fast as he can Shane heads toward the forest to meet up with Zoe

Running as fast as he can, Shane heads toward the forest to meet up with Zoe.


Polar Storm. (2009) Jack Coleman, Holly Dignard, Tyler Johnston, Nicholas Carella, Roger R. Cross , Emma Lahana, Scott Lyster, Terry David Mulligan, Marsha Regis, Kurt Max Runte.
Written and directed by Paul Ziller. Categories: Drama, Science Fiction.
ChucksConnection Rating: 2.5 chucks ratingMPAA Rating: PG-13

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