Terrible Thursday: Miami Magma

Director: Todor Chapkanov

Starring: Stacey Asaro, Rachel Hunter


Synopsis: An evil oil company is drilling under Miami. In the course of their drilling, they have awakened a long dormant volcano that has hidden under Florida for centuries. Disturbed by increasing geothermal anomalies, a team of geologists sets out to show the unethical practices of the oil company and save Miami. Unfortunately, the damage has already been done, and it is up to the geologists, with the help of the United States Army to shut down the volcano before it destroys Miami and threatens the world!

Why it fails: Miami Magma deserves just a bit of credit for being a Syfy channel original movie that is not a “Monster Animal vs. Other Monster Animal” movie or another Sharknado sequel. In fact, in a shocking turn of events, Miami Magma feels like Syfy was actually attempting to make a credible disaster movie. Sure they did not have the budget for it, and it has some of the misplaced tongue-in-cheek humor of the Sharknado movies, but at least they tried, and failed spectacularly. Miami Magma never becomes original enough to give it an excuse for existing. It hits the same plot points as every other disaster movie that you have ever seen, especially volcano movies like Dante’s Peak. Oddly enough, Miami Magma decides to spend a lot of time trying to make up a bunch of pseudo-science background behind what is happening, and it is exactly as interesting as you would think. The middle hour of this movie is unbelievably dull, and the high points never make up for it.

Should you watch it?: I can not emphasize this enough: Miami Magma is unbelievably boring. One of the biggest problems of this movie is that it tries to take itself seriously. For some reason, the writers decided that they were trying to make a scientifically supported disaster movie. Completely getting the science wrong is understandable (it is a movie after all) but Miami Magma has no excuse for being as boring as it is. When you are purposefully watching bad movies, the worst thing that a bad movie can be is boring. In good movies, the scenes of dialogue and exposition are interesting because they drive the story along. But in a bad movie where you do not care about the characters and plot, it is just a slog to get through. On top of that, the movie never devolves into the schlocky over-the-top destruction that would make it fun. You could even say that Miami Magma is a restrained production and never gets into massive city-wide destruction. And that sucks in a disaster B-movie. Sure there is fun little scenes here and there, but when you have an hour of boring useless plot development, it is best to skip.

Rating as a real movie: 2/10

Rating as a bad movie: 4/10


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