Ice from the Sun (1999)

Rating: D

Dir: Eric Stanze
Star: DJ Vivona, Ramona Midgett, Angela Zimmerly

It’s important to cut low-budget film slack, and take into account their limitations when reviewing them. However, this is a two-way street, because it is just as important for the film-makers to cut the viewers some slack too. It’s hard to watch something when the technical qualities are below par, and so the last thing we need are severe, brutal editing techniques, a surfeit of effects i.e. scratching the negative, for no readily apparent reason, and a storyline which redefines obscurist. And if you must do all this, a running-time of – ulp! – 115 minutes is probably not wise either.

I have to say, some of the visuals are extremely striking, and if you can find something else to do while it’s on, the film works well as background wallpaper, especially given a good punk/industrial soundtrack. As you’d imagine, it’s not really plot-driven: a woman is rescued from suicide by a divine power, and sent, along with six sacrificial victims, into another dimension to kill its ruler. One sequence, involving a naked woman, a pick-up truck and some salt, is genuinely disturbing. Otherwise…well, I’ve read laughable comparisons to The Matrix and Lost Highway: it’s more like a (admittedly impressive) showreel for Stanze’s services as a director of music videos.