Magazine article Screen International

Into the Storm

Magazine article Screen International

Into the Storm

Article excerpt

Dir: Steven Quale. US. 2014. 89mins

The success of Jan de Bont's 1996 hit Twister set the bar pretty high when it come to weather-orientated disaster movies, and while the next generation CGI storms (twisters in flames, deadly cyclones and a fleet of jumbo jet swept away by the winds) in Into The Storm are mesmerisingly impressive, it is when the weather subsides and the dialogue is brought into play that the film flounders like a fish out of water.

While the action is watchable when the twisters are in full flow in the end this weather adventure turns out to be something of a false alarm.

This Warner action-thriller has been trailered extensively and should generate a solid initial audience based on the grandstanding effects alone, but with its low-key cast and likely less-than-positive reviews it looks unlikely to fare well against some of the genuine summer blockbusters out there.

Where Twister was as much about the bickering relationship between the two lead characters (played with conviction by Helen Hunt and Bill Paxton) and the humourous antics of the storm chasers (which included a young-ish Philip Seymour Hoffman) as it was the weather, Into The Storm is a fully fledged disaster movie, with director Steven Quayle (who made Final Destination 5) a dab hand at marshalling the thrilling effects.

The film is set against a single day around the town of Silverton, a middle America location that happens to be hit by an unprecedented series of tornadoes. It is a day like any other day - at the local high school it is graduation, with the usual celebrations hampered by a burst of heavy rain just as the speeches finish. But just as the youngsters head for the relative safety of the school the weather starts to get nastier.

When school vice principal Gary Fuller (The Hobbit star Richard Armitage) realises one of his teen sons Donnie (Max Deacon) is trapped in an abandoned factory with Kaitlyn (Alycia Debnam-Carey) the girl he is keen on, he heads out into the wilds - accompanied by his other son Trey (Nathan Kress) , who was supposed to be video-recording the graduation and therefore handily carries a camera everywhere - to try and find them.

As they head through town their car is damaged in the storm, but they are helped by a team of well-equipped storm chasers, led documentary filmmaker Pete Moore (Matt Walsh) and meteorologist Allison Stone (Sarah Wayne Callies, from The Walking Dead) who agree to aid them. …

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