Plot: Marcus (Stacy Keach) was once a respected, world renowned climate scientist and while his ideas were bold, his vision was remarkable. But when politicians brushed off his research and his funding was revoked, it pushed Marcus over the edge and he became a recluse of sorts. In the wake of his fall from grace, his own sons became estranged, but after some freak weather incidents left some of their father’s old rivals dead, the brothers reconnected. The two suspect that Marcus has continued his old research and found a way to manipulate weather patterns, allowing him to more or less control the weather. He seems determined to channel this power into revenge against those who ignored his work, but his sons are on the hunt to find him and stop him, before more people are hurt. But will Marcus have his vengeance and can one man truly harness the full power of mother nature?
Entertainment Value: Weather Wars is no classic of cinema, but it does have Stacy Keach as a maniacal climate scientist who seeks to harness mother nature to go after his enemies, so there’s that. I mean, Keach as a madman using the weather to kill those who doubted him is quite fun, so even if the rest of the movie can’t live up to that, there is some fun to be had here. The narrative is of course ridiculous, but we know that the story exists only to allow us to see freak weather storms cause disaster after disaster, so harm done. There’s a thread about two brothers reuniting to stop their father’s weather wielding ways, but that sounds a lot cooler than it is. The real focus is on the chaos the weather brings down and the movie does provide on that front, via some hilarious, low end CGI effects. But again, you know what you’re in for with a movie like Weather Wars, so yes, the visual effects are laughable, but that’s part of the charm. The storm scenes are fun and some of the movie’s high points to be sure, though I wish there was more of the disaster elements and less of the estranged family dynamic. Even so, for fans of these kind of SyFy Channel style disaster movies, Weather Wars is worth a peek, if just for Keach’s over the top performance.
The disaster scenes are likely to be a draw for many viewers, but the real star of Weather Wars is Stacy Keach, who steals the show. His lunatic scientist is what keeps the movie watchable in many instances, as whenever the storms die down, there’s not a lot of fun to be had here. So having this dialed up, over the top crackpot villain really makes a difference in how the movie flows. Keach makes no effort to restrain his performance and it is a sight to behold, as he channels an unhinged persona hellbent on using the weather to settle his scores. He isn’t given much depth of character to work with, but he nails the vengeful genius part well, while embracing the movie’s obvious b movie tone with aplomb. I wish he had more time in fact, especially since the estranged sons thread is such a dud. But between the weather disasters and Keach’s wild effort, Weather Wars has some good times. The cast also includes Jason London, Erin Cahill, Lance E. Nichols, and Miles Doleac.
The Disc: Mill Creek Entertainment’s Apocalypse: 4 in 1 Collection is home to Weather Wars, as well three other similar sci/fi disaster movies. This film looks fine in this edition, a clean and fairly sharp presentation overall. I found contrast to be accurate and colors are warm and natural. I didn’t any compression woes and with two movies on each disc, there’s room to breathe here. As far as DVD visual presentations are concerned, this one looks quite solid.