"Ice Spiders" is about giant government-spawned spiders versus the most annoying ski team in history. Essentially there's an evil government program to genetically engineer giant spiders for military purposes. You see, the government got a prehistoric arachnid from Afghanistan and spliced it with modern spiders to obtain their silk, which is bulletproof.
Vanessa Williams is Dr. April Sommers, a big-league expert on arachnid genetics, and is ignorant of the sinister overtones of the work at the lab. The male protagonist is Patrick Muldoon as Dan "Dash" Dashiell, a formerly great skier and now a has-been teaching a bunch of sniveling, elitist high school age skiers in preparation for the Olympics.
To say that Williams can't pull off the role of a brilliant scientist is a huge understatement, but she and Muldoon are actually the most likeable cast members. I was so ready for the spiders to eat all the teenagers, that every minute they were onscreen and uneaten was more and more agonizing (and made even more so by extremely "cool" dialogue like "that was some nice carvin' by you, man", and frequent use of words like "gnarly").
The box art is not representative of the film. The box shows gigantic spiders the size of an airplane hangar, but in the film the spiders are about the size of a golden retriever. The spiders are very poorly executed CGI and are about as realistic and scary of a science fiction creature as "Alf". The writing and acting are very amateurish, and the film is full of ridiculous situations that take away from the film. My favorite scene involves a school bus full of teenagers: it's completely ludicrous, yet entertaining. (The same theme was done much more skillfully with angry ravens in "Kaw".) Sadly some of the teens do survive the arachnid holocaust: hopefully, though, they will never be in another film.
I gave the film two stars, which is generous, because in spite of the cast, the film was sometimes quite entertaining, although in a way I suspect that the producers didn't intend. If you like "Mystery Science Theater 3000", you'll immediately see what I mean.