“The gravitation field is accelerating the meteor shower!”
“We’ve lost the orbital shield!”
“Invert the signal flow on the flux capacitor!”
“Launch all deus ex machina techno-weapons!”
— Techno-babble as only The Asylum can shuckster
Truth: we weren’t going to review this film. But after reviewing the ludicrous fun of the recently-released Asteroid-a-Geddon and discovering the newly-released Meteor Moon on our cable system’s PPV channels, we figured we might as well polish off The Asylum’s Deep Impact-cum-Armageddon Earth-is-jeopardy-and-only-sexy n’ buff-scientists-can-save-us trifecta. In fact, this is the perfect film to review for our “Matriarchy in Space Week” as The Asylum-verse is saved by a woman.
Is that sexist to say?
Well, have you ever watched a PBS-TV episode of Nova? The brainiacs on those shows are always more Giorgio A. Tsoukalos unkempt-flabby than Gerald Butler GQ-ripped. But it’s not The Asylum’s fault. And it’s not first-time screenwriter Joe Roche’s or director Matthew Boda’s bad, either: they’re just a pair of struggling actor n’ crew dudes making a buck on The Asylum manufacturing line, hired to assemble a mockbuster following the Gerard Butler-disaster epic template cast forth in Geostorm (China’s The Wandering Earth is the better film) and Greenland (which actually isn’t that bad). Look, no one’s dropping $7.99 streaming fees to see Leonard Hoffstedder sucking back on inhalers, doubled over on zero-gravity toilets, battling both lactose-irritable bowls and meteors; meanwhile, below deck, at the controls of the Blackhole-deus ex machina Generator, Mission Specialist Howard “Fruit Loop” Wolowitz wants to screw Kate Watson’s cargo-camping hot pants-bottomed (What, no “Daisy Dukes” were available?) meteoricist: the Earth’s fate be damned. And no, Dr. Kothropali, Becca Buckalew isn’t interested in your whiny insecurities, either. Turn your telescope back to the stars, your perv.
So, if you’ve navigated the stars of The Asylum-verse, you know Collision Earth is one of those films that stars-a-bunch-of-first-time-actors-you-never-heard-of and _____________. In Meteor Moon, it was Dominique Swain in the stand-here-on-the-same-spot-on-this-set-for-the-whole-movie role to get a “name” on the box; this time it’s Eric Roberts (this time in military fatigues and back from Asteroid-a-Geddon) to bark orders and make all the other cardboard-hysterical, techno-babbling thespians look even worse than they really are at the craft. (Plot spoiler: It takes 30 minutes to achieve our Eric-ness; in another 30, Eric’s dead via his falling into a cavernous CGI-fire.)
So, Collision Earth is another one of those movies where the Earth has clusters of nuclear warhead-armed satellites and phalanx after phalanx of perpetually launch-ready rockets — and we still can’t stop the wrath of Lucifer’s Hammer (the best-selling, award-winning 1977 novel by Larry Niven that started this unintentional mess in the first place). And, like Greenland, this Asylum-romp is just that: a fiction survival romp set on Earth with less Deep Impact-in-space shenanigans and more about how-do-the-bunkered-humans-cope-with-the-meteor-aftermath of the Panic in Year Zero! (1962) variety. When it comes to effects: Collision Earth is a budget-strained film void of in-camera effects traded out for After Effects-overlays of the Colorforms play-set variety.
Oh, and this is a film where our camping shorty-shorts n’ boots-and-ankle socks babe with a tummy tie-off on her flannel shirt hops into a Lockheed F-35 Lightning to electro-fry the meteor to oblivion. We’ll forgive that the actual jet CGI’d is a Boeing F-18 Super Hornet — and the cockpit isn’t accurate to either jet — because women in space rock our world.
You’ve seen better. But you’ve also seen a lot worst in The Asylum-verse . . . or any Roger Corman AIP-verse, for that matter. Hey, it’s better than Rocket Attack, U.S.A. and King Dinosaur, so there’s that going for it. And the women — sans the wardrobe snafus — are Bechdel test-strong, so double bonus, for this ain’t no Cat-Women of the Moon. Collision Earth is currently available as a PPV on U.S. cable systems and as a VOD on multiple streaming platforms.