Movie Review: ‘Into the Storm’

Director: Steven Quale

Cast: Richard Armitage, Sarah Wayne Callies, Matt Walsh

Plot: A group of tornado chasers, a couple of redneck thrillseekers and a separated family get caught up in a really big storm.

Review: Yeah, I know that plot description doesn’t tell you much, but this is an immensely shallow film. The story is so insubstantial and the characters so dull that there’s not much else to say about the plot other than ‘big storm’. We have some documentary tornado chasers who can’t seem to get along, a pair of dunderheaded rednecks who want to be youtube famous and a father trying to reach his stranded son and they all wind up trying to survive together with a replenishing group of red shirts.

Into the Storm 3

It doesn’t really matter, as the average ticket buyer isn’t in it for the script. During the scenes when the scenery is being chucked about the place it does look pretty awesome. There’s plenty of imagination and creativity with trees, trucks and buildings being thrown about. The trailer does serve as a highlight reel, and the final film adds another, like, ten minutes of full on CGI action to that. The movie does have one unique gimmick in that it’s a found footage storm disaster movie.

Yes, a found footage storm movie. This is the laziest attempt that this little subgenre, with times when there is clearly everyone in the scene on camera yet the shot is still shaking like someone is holding it. At other times it doesn’t look like a found footage movie at all until someone turns to the camera and says ‘did you get that’ to some mysterious silent character who is never seen. There’s also footage shown from cameras that are clearly destroyed by fire tornados.

Into the Storm

This is one of the most expensive B-Movies ever made. The characters are ridiculous and the dialogue is laughable. The girl who is trapped under a building and up to her chest in water suddenly claims ‘I can’t get a signal’ while clutching her phone. The meteorologist travelling with the tornado chasers spends half the movie sitting in a van with a dozen monitors showing weather data, but only gets her information from the news on the radio. Characters in crowded shelters disappear and reappear and the degree to which the wind effects people changes from shot to shot. There were plenty of laughs to be had, and the ultimate fate of Pete and his tank had the cinema chuckling merrily.

It’s a bad film, but I see potential drinking games. Play its cards right and it’s a cheesy cult favourite to be trotted out as a classier Sharknado.

Review: THREE out of TEN