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Review: Thrill of the chase lacking in new disaster movie

There’s a reason movies like “Twister” and “The Day After Tomorrow” were so popular. Although in reality natural disasters are nothing to joke about, people sure get a kick out of watching tornados throw a cow into the air or flatten an entire town in a matter of seconds.

“Into the Storm” should please most, but more as a highlight reel of impressive special effects and less like an actual film. The movie depicts a modern “biggest storm ever” and its battle with the small Midwest town of Silverton.Photo Credit: SUBMITTED - New movie - Battling tornados and avoiding climate change, ‘Into the Storm,' depicts a small-town's fight with nature. The movie opened Aug. 8.

Focusing on a select cast of characters, primarily a storm-chasing crew and a single dad with his two sons, the film is depicted with a collection of first-person shots and scenes shot by an unknown source. Unfortunately, the first third of the 89-minute movie is dedicated to character development and no real action is seen until viewers might be ready to throw in the towel.

When the action starts, it’s what you’d expect. Tornados destroy houses, cause some emotional drama — one even catches on fire — and viewers are able to enjoy the front seat to the action safe from harm. But when the storm rests and the characters are the focal point, mental countdowns ensue to the next twister. The film is directed by Steven Quale — best known for his special effects and “Final Destination 5.” He should stick to what he’s good at, leaving things like dialogue and plot development to someone else.

As with all natural disaster movies, there are some transparent jabs at the human condition, self-reflection, a love interest developed via scary storm and a family relationship restored. Somehow, though, the movie manages to dance around climate change as the reasoning behind the unheard of storm without actually saying the words. “Into the Storm” is entirely predictable, much like the tornados the cast chases.

There’s also the odd chastising of the characters for their footage appreciation when the ultimate tornado shots are captured. But the movie and the audience thrive on these destructive scenes. Without them, there wouldn’t be a movie.

Despite the attempt to build up the story as a serious flick, it couldn’t possibly end on a somber note and injects a warm fuzzy scene followed by a comedic flash. Much like the drunken duo chasing tornados, the action is the only reason to see “Into the Storm.” Even that reasoning is a stretch.



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