Thursday, 18 December 2014

Into the Storm

The sleepy small town of Silverton is blissfully unaware of the devastation about to befall them as on the day of the school's graduation ceremony a tornado will strike the town. The film follows three sets of people, four storm chasers tracking the storm, two daredevils who enjoy risky stunts and a stern father and his two boys. A series of coincidences allows the three groups of people to converge as they fight to rescue Gary's (Richard Armitage) son Donnie (Max Deacon), who is trapped underneath a pile of rubble.

Steven Quale's Into the Storm presents itself as found footage film by using fake live news broadcasts, mobile phone cameras and digital cameras to tell the story. The problem is, however, that film doesn't look too different from any other film that was shot in the standard narrative format. This means that film loses the only thing that made it stand out from any other film about freak weather such as 2012, The Day After Tomorrow and, of course, Twister. Into the Storm follows the standard step by step guide about how to write a movie about tornados by making the first tornado a small one, the second split into two and then three or four and making the final twister be about the same size as Latvia. The film's lack of focus on how it wants to tell its story makes it impossible to tell whether it is a found footage film or not.

Into the Storm makes several allusions to hurricanes Sandy and Katrina and thus has a message that is relevant in the current climate namely that freak storms such as Sandy and Katrina which were once in a life events are now a yearly occurrence. This message, however, gets lost for two reasons. The first reason is that the characters are so thinly development that they'll be blown away by the smallest gust of wind, this means that there is no human element to the story and thus the message is ineffective. The second reason for the message being lost is the film spends so much time showing the viewer how cool this freak weather events are that it doesn't really show the true devastation it can cause. More than anything it just makes one want to see a tornado. 

Yet for all the forgettable characters (of which there are many) and dreadful lines of dialogue (of which there are many) the film is rather fun. The special effects for instance are spectacular and the scenes in which a mega tornado throws aside several passenger airplanes are rather exciting even despite the fact that they are laced with clunky dialogue that requires top quality actors such as Richard Armitage shouting "hang onto something" at the top of their voice.

The film is poor, the characters are dreadful, the dialogue is clunky and the story itself is poorly written as characters' fates are left unwritten as well as completely forgotten about (a guy called Lucas, the guy who plays lacrosse, is completely forgotten about until he is randomly mentioned), but the film is in its element when the tornado hits. Outside of the bellowing winds and swirling hot air the film is terrible, but has a B movie quality to it albeit an expensive one.


1 comment:

  1. I never realized this was supposed to be a found footage film. I never got around to seeing it, maybe if it's ever on TV,