Hollywood disaster films are devoted to the proposition that the world ends with a bang and a whimper. A-movie thunder in nature and the elements; B-movie bleating in the dialogue and human drama, sometimes given deceptive bravura by an all-star cast. Since Into the Storm has unknown players, the game is up from frame one – or is so one-sided it’s like watching Brazil-Germany gone cine-gigantic. Dramatis personae 1; special effects 7.
Twisters converge as the formulary characters fettle up for the fray. Professional storm chasers in an armoured car. YouTube nutters on bikes. A dad and two sons taking their camcorder time-capsule project, plus family frictions, into the big arena. At times you hide your head in your hands to avoid tornado triteness. At others you portcullis your fingers with scared glee to watch the sky turn savage. At the battered local airport, planes are lifted wallowing and keening like airborne whales. It’s a terrific scene. And in one brilliant, doomed moment a man and vehicle are lifted high into the clear blue quiet above the storm’s eye. Then it’s back down to life, death and the tussle between mortal script and supra-mortal apocalypse.