Review: Fireball DVD

STUDIO: MTI | DIRECTOR: K.T. Donaldson | CAST: Ian Somerhalder, Aleks Paunovic, Lexa Doig, Aaron Pearl
RELEASE DATE: 6/22/10 | PRICE: DVD $24.95
SPECS: PG-13 | 94 min. | Action thriller | 16:9 widescreen | Dolby Digital Surround | Spanish subtitles

RATINGS (out of 5): Movie | Audio | Video | Overall

Fireball is based on a pretty significant biological leap of faith: If you have enough anabolic steroids in your body — such as in the case of disgraced former linebacker Tyler “The Fuse” Draven (Aleks Paunovic) — then your body won’t actually burn to a cinder when your prison catches on fire. Instead, the fire will happily fuse with your ‘roid-raged genes and give you the ability to throw big wads of flames whenever you get upset. It’s as if the Incredible Hulk swapped DNA with Johnny Storm from the Fantastic Four.

Sadly, there’s nothing Marvel-ous about this action movie . Lots of exposition minimizes the explosions, although the number of everyday things that can and do explode reveals a rather cruel wit in the minds of writer Kraig Wenman and director K.T. Donaldson (actor Kristoffer Tabori, hiding under a less exotic name).

Much of the wheel-spinning chit chat is between fire investigator Ava (V‘s Lexa Doig, rising far above the material) and a smitten, chain-smoking (har!) Federal agent Lee Cooper, played by Lost‘s Ian Somerhalder. Ava is just one crime scene behind Draven throughout the movie, scratching her head trying to figure out how the murderous conflagrations began. She’s sort of a one-woman CSI, and Doig recites the facts about fire with amusing aplomb.

The low-budget CGI effects may as well be made out of provolone instead of pixels, especially when it gets down to the big showdown at the nuclear plant. Yes, a nuclear plant.

It’s hard to get fired up about Fireball, but those with the SyFy Channel (where the film premiered) on their Favorites button on their remote won’t mind playing this movie in the background during a barbecue. Just watch out for the propane.


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About Buzz

Buzz McClain reviews DVDs for Playboy magazine and is a former critic for Video Business magazine. But what he really wants to do is direct.