Rob Cohen was the director of the original xXx and the first The Fast and the Furious and he combines his love of high octane adventure with the basic premise of The Perfect Storm to and throws in the plot of a heist movie in this film which like the hurricane it describes becomes a force of nature in itself and rambles along wherever fancy takes it. It’s chock-a-block with so many improbabilities that after a point your kind of stop counting.
Brothers Will (Toby Kebbell) and Breeze (Ryan Kwanten) saw their father being killed when a water tank falls on his twenty five years ago and grew up to be two very different individuals. While Will is a PhD holder in environmental science and is a certified storm chaser who goes around in a batmobile hybrid, Breeze (yes, in a film centered around a storm, one of the principle characters is called Breeze) has become the town slacker, womaniser, and it’s only mechanic. He’s also the only civilian left in town when another mega hurricane hits it, prompting a visit from his estranged brother. Also, as he is also in charge of maintaining the spare generators of a federal agency housing a giant shredder existing on the outskirts of their fictional town, he conveniently becomes central to the plot. Taking advantage of the bad weather, the town’s corrupt police force team-up with a group of new-age thieves to loot the 600 million or so in used notes waiting to be shredded. The only hurdle in their otherwise flawless plan is the straight-laced treasury agent Casey (Maggie Grace), who instinctively changes the vault’s code before setting off to find a mechanic needed to repair the spare generator. Breeze is taken hostage and Will and Casey join forces to rescue him and stop the heist from succeeding.
The film is primarily targeted at people who love such flicks as Sharknado or Snakes On A Plane. There is no hint at subtlety anywhere, what with the main characters shouting out their intentions (because of the high intensity winds, you see) loud and clear. We come to know that their father’s death will have a lasting effect on the young kids because at that precise moment, the clouds come together to form a skull — yes that’s the kind of dumbed-up stuff the film serves. Will uses one corny devise after the other to outsmart the bad guys, include using car hubcaps as missiles that do the maximum damage with gale force winds behind them. He also creates a pressure point within a mall that leaves him and Casey hanging out like kites from steel wires. The end sequence is straight out of the Fast and the Furious franchise, with a trio of trucks chasing each other with the storm on their backs.
The characters are purely one-dimensional to say the least. Toby Kebbell tries hard to play the scarred meteorologist who nevertheless chases storms but gives up the pretense halfway and becomes a straight-forward action star. He’s still the best among the lot, the rest of the the motley crew mostly go through the motions, knowing that they are playing second fiddle to the special effects. It would have been served the film’s appeal better if it was shot in IMAX 3D. The 2D effects aren’t bad but the 3D technology has spoilt us all and as a result the viewers will definitely feel short-changed.