Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The Hurricane Heist Is Nowhere Near As Much Fun As It Should Be

The trailer for The Hurricane Heist is a work of art. So cheesy it should come with a warning for the lactose intolerant, the trailer tosses out one gloriously cheesy line of dialogue after another at the viewer while being accompanied by the pulsating rhythm of The Scorpions Rock You Like A Hurricane. By the time the trailer concludes, right after it's seemingly ended, with massive on-screen text flying towards the screen talking about how much money the bank robbers have stolen, you'd be nuts to not have high hopes for what kind of lunacy the actual Hurricane Heist movie could deliver. Alas, this is one of those motion pictures that were better off as a trailer, way better in fact.

Will (Toby Kebbell) is the lead character of The Hurricane Heist, a guy who, along with his brother Breeze (Ryan Kwanten), watched their Dad die in the middle of a hurricane when they were kids. Now Will tracks hurricanes for a living as a meteorologist while Breeze is a bum who is more interested in one-night stands and booze than getting his life in order. Just as a massive hurricane is about to hit the town Breeze call homes, a nearby U.S. treasury facility is attacked and government agent Casey (Maggie Grace), looking to redeem her career after a recent screw-up in the field, won't let all of that money at the facility get stolen without a fight.

Both Will and Breeze get wrapped up in her plot to stop this heist being led by a man named Perkins (Ralph Ineson), all while the hurricane, which Will dubs the "storm of the century", steadily gets more & more powerful. That's a premise ripe for schlocky fun if I ever heard one, but The Hurricane Heist sadly settles for stagnant stormy scenarios rather than more outlandish & fun antics that would feel more appropriate in a plot this ridiculous. Only a handful of moments, like Will combining hubcaps with strong gusts of wind as a way to attack his foes, reach the sort of goofy fun The Hurricane Heist is clearly meant to deliver.

Part of the issue is the actors, the cast doesn't feel up to the task of embracing the kind of entertaining lunacy The Hurricane Heist is in desperate need of. Toby Kebbell is a playing a redneck meteorologist haunted by seeing a hurricane in the shape of a skull kill his dad (I didn't make any of that up), yet he plays the role with little to no energy, he goes for a muted performance when he should be going gusto in this part. Maggie Grace is similarly inert in her personality-deprived role and even though he gets to play the irresponsible lead character, Ryan Kwanten isn't much fun as Breeze. Ralph Ineson (who I only realized halfway through the movie also played the father in The VVitch) chews scenery in a manner fitting for the movie he's in.

Since we have a story heavily lacking in majorly fun moments as well as a crew of actors who are predominately delivering static performances, you can see why The Hurricane Heist would end up being such a lackluster project. Director Rob Cohen may have only helmed the very first Fast & Furious movie but he could have learned a thing or two from the best of the sequels that emerged from that car-racing motion picture. Fully embracing stylized fun instead of too often settling for more tired set pieces would have made The Hurricane Heist as much fun as that glorious trailer. Oh, and you don't get to ever hear Rock You Like a Hurricane in the actual Hurricane Heist movie, another point in favor of it's own trailer as the superior project.

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