(On Cable TV, March 2012) Another year, another crop of cheap SF movies produced for specialty cable channels. Collision Earth, like many such undistinguished efforts as Ice Quake or Metal Tornado, faithfully follows the usual disaster-movie plot template: Mysterious events, life-threatening revelations, scientists allying themselves with ordinary people to find a solution. It’s all wrapped in classic low-budget filmmaking: by-the-number script; found locations; merely adequate actors; and wildly inconsistent special effects. What distinguishes Collision Earth is scope and a certain go-for-broke grandness. The first few minutes show the tone as much in bad physics than in grand concepts, as a shuttle doing a Mercury fly-by is swept along when a massive solar flare sends the planet careening straight toward Earth. No points will be awarded for credible science or technology, but then again this is a film with an oddly awe-inspiring scene in which Seattle’s cars are all sent up in the sky due to Mercury’s magnetism. (Then: be prepared for a lot of CGI falling cars.) Collision Earth is just as heartless in disposing of its supporting characters in unsentimental, quasi mechanistic ways. It doesn’t amount to a movie that escapes the Syfy death-kiss of low quality, but it does have a few moments to distinguish itself. The best thing about this being a made-for-TV movie is that you will never have to pay for it, except by letting it waste your time.