6 August 2014 | wes-connors
It's Christmas Eve in the quaint little town of Normal, Alaska – but don't start decking the halls. A mysterious man leaves a gift on the doorstep of the apparently wealthy "Miller" family. There is no name or address on the present. The curious family opens it to reveal a snow globe – featuring a replica of their beautiful town inside. The anonymous gift looks nice, but the old advice "beware of strangers bearing gifts" applies. Whenever the snow globe is activated, a disaster strikes the town. Preteen son Dylan Matzke (as Rudy) gets to stay home through most of the disasters, and play with the snow globe. He's very smart – and a sharp dresser. The family has to deal with earthquakes, fires and very bad snowstorms. Oddly, it snows only in the mountains – never in the center of town...
The family is led by father David Cubitt (as John Miller) and pilot mother Laura Harris (as Beth). Pretty daughter Magda Apanowicz (as Jennifer) appears to be playing a young teenager, with a crush on champion snowboarder Jeffrey Ballard (as Derrick Reed). This story, written by Rudy Thauberger and directed by Sheldon Wilson, isn't too bad. It is reminiscent of an old "Twilight Zone" TV episode. But, the cheap "disaster movie" focus does not excite. The effects may be okay considering the cost, but they distract rather than help tell the story. For example, we see a crash victim sitting in a burnt-out shell of her helicopter, unharmed except for some scratches and struggling to unfasten her seat belt. Especially during the second half, it seems like parts of the original story are missing.
*** Snowmageddon (12/10/11) Sheldon Wilson ~ David Cubitt, Laura Harris, Magda Apanowicz, Jeff C. Ballard