Thrillers Are Supposed to Be Thrilling

Into the Storm: I liked it. That was a relief! because I had started seeing some ho-hum reviews all of a sudden. I was also getting a wee bit nervous because I thought it might scare me too much. I was anxious during the movie, for sure (my muscles were all tight when we walked out of the cinema!) but I wasn’t scared. much.
tornado blows through school hallway
instead of sitting in uncomfortable positions for eternities during tornado drills, just show this scene instead. mission accomplished!


The biggest surprise for me? That the movie had tons of character and not just special effects (like some of the reviews were claiming). I liked that there were several different human stories going on at the same time. It helped break things up and not let the overall storyline get bogged down in too much drama, yet there was enough that we were able to get to know the characters and care about them. Gary and Donnie pulled at my heart strings not only because I’ve been there done that (as the teenager)
Donnie and his movie camera
I feel a secondary crush forming, watch out Max…
but also because I now have a teenager. Trey kind of annoyed me but as his story developed I liked the outcome, as well as Donnie’s. I wanted to be part of that family hug in the rain because I had grown to care about each of them and see things from their individual perspectives. 
Trey and Donnie talk outside of the school
every parent’s fear: that the Fresh Prince was actually singing about them
As for the tornadoes, I thought it was all done realistically. I’ve heard mumblings about the tornadoes conveniently giving people time to move from one scene to another, but that’s how it really is. When I had my tornado scare, the storm was there… and then it wasn’t. It got really quiet afterwards and it was like everything shifted back to normal. I could hear the drizzling rain and the beeping of the garbage truck, when just moments before it was all wind and hail and treetops kissing the ground. 
Gary finds a dog in the rubble
the cats are still hiding. just saying.
That’s one of the aspects I really liked about the movie, that everyone wasn’t running around with a clear intent of what they were supposed to be doing. because there is that lull when you’re like what do I do now? So when a tornado is close and we want to scream at the characters to “run, take cover!” I think it’s entirely realistic that they don’t do that straight away. Even though it’s scary, bad weather is mesmerizing. Real life isn’t like the movies, you aren’t always able to think clearly and do the right thing.
Gary and Allison watch tornado touchdown
Lori, will you never learn? Don’t Look Back!
I’m not saying there weren’t any problems with the movie but only two things really bothered me. 1.) the church scene was lame. I understand the need for that confrontation, that the boss was getting too wrapped up in things and ended up pushing the young cameraman farther than he wanted to go, but the acting in that scene could use some work. 
cameraman Jeremy Sumpter
I do believe in tornadoes. I do! I do!
2.) the Titus came equipped with everything to withstand a tornado, yet it didn’t have an axe for cutting away fallen trees or debris? One of the first things you grab for bad weather clean up is an axe or chainsaw. Not a complaint really, just an observation. 
armored Titus
The Titus: Batman’s “everyday” car.
So yes, I’d watch this again. and again. and possibly some more, because Gary was everything I wanted him to be and Donnie found a way into my heart rather quickly. Plus, it was fun to watch! I think the naysayers are forgetting about the fun part. Thrillers are supposed to be thrilling, not Shakespeare.
wide tornado covers large area
to flee or not to flee: that is the question


Oh! and hey people-who-choose-the-movie-trailers: just because I like action thrillers does not mean I automatically like horror films. The psycho dolls and Ouija boards scared the bejesus outta me!
Trey looks shocked as he films tornado
scarier than Neville and Nora combined! 

40 thoughts on “Thrillers Are Supposed to Be Thrilling

        1. my husband agreed that he liked the character stories and how there were several of them sprinkled throughout. he had a problem with the wind being strong enough to suck up cars while people nearby were still walking around. I pointed out that often a tornado will flatten a house and not touch the one next door at all. he didn’t agree, exactly, but he gave it consideration.


        1. yes, you’re probably right. Denzel Washington-everyday-superhero was the only one that really appealed to me. (sorry Expendables. you were ridiculous the first time, and every time since 🙄 )


          1. same here. Also uninterested in Left Behind and Nightcrawler. I wonder if we were at businesses in the same theater chain 🙂


  1. LOL you are much easier to please than I am apparently, kelbel! I was far more critical. I took it easy in my blog from what I really thought. And this is MY kind of movie, not yours! LOL!! Glad you and hubby enjoyed it.


          1. there were some movie stills that I was seeing that I didn’t like. he looked all rosy cheeked and kind of like a Ken doll 😛 but once I saw him in action, he really made me like Gary and root for him. maybe it’s just b/c I related to the situation. that whole domestic scene at breakfast with him and the boys, the straight-laced suburban dad, etc. it was quite odd hearing an American accent from Richard but in a way it made me connect with the character more, b/c it was Gary and not Richard.

            Liked by 2 people

  2. I saw it twice. Once Friday night and then this afternoon. The first time I watched the movie (if that makes sense.) Today I was able to focus more on RA because I knew the story. I think the critics who are blasting the actors haven’t done their homework. How could you see RA as Guy or Thorin and not know he was acting to be like Gary. I think the characters were supposed to be average and that is what the actors gave us: Average people and how they behave during an extraordinary and terrifying experience.

    Ditto on the trailers. I literally had my eyes closed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree with you completely, Tree! I think the woodenness was part of his character. he became an everyday hero which means he had to be average, the suburban drone. that beginning scene in the kitchen really cemented his character for me, as did the little snippet of him having to defer to the principal and his boys remarking on it. Gary’s layers aren’t so noticeable as Guy or Lucas, but they’re there 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Oh gosh, hear hear on the selection of trailers. I was shown the same ones you were and I *do not* do horror. Even more specifically, I do not do killer dolls. Not even kidding you, I’m still having nightmares about that damn trailer.


  4. Thanks Kelbel – haven’t seen ITS yes because I’m in the UK, but thus reive cheers me up and makes me think I’m going to enjoy it. And I’m also getting a secondary crush on Max – adorable and shares enough features with RA to really look as if he could be his son 🙂


  5. Thoroughly enjoyed reading your review – as usual your photo captions are the icing on the cake, how *do* you come up with them??? – and am feeling really good about seeing this film. It will be nothing but entertainment for me, with RA as a bonus, I suppose. And I will be uncompromisingly checking out his accent, his woodenness and his wet shirt. No high culture needed here – finally able to relax. Phew. The intellectual demands on the fangirl were getting a bit too much for me lately.
    Thanks for posting – as opposed to the play, I am lapping up all the ITS reviews before I am seeing the film because I am so not an expert on desaster movies, and I will need your expertise to form my own opinion. Cheers!


    1. how do I come up with the captions? it’s mostly just off-the-cuff. that’s how I talk in real life, which can be uncomfortable when others don’t get the references :/


        1. I communicate in song lyrics, botched movie quotes, and overly dramatic facial expressions 😛 and I’m either very friendly or very standoffish, there doesn’t seem to be an in-between.

          Liked by 1 person


    I gotta admit, there were two places in the movie when I busted up laughing. The first was when the hole started filling with water from some mystery deluge as if a fire hydrant had burst open. The other was when they were on the bus and O NO the power lines are down so we have to turn and go the other way and *O NO THE WHOLE STREET HAS BEEN DUG UP!!!* It was very Looney Toons to me.

    Well, and I snickered a lot through the movie because the younger son looked so Quileute that all I could think of was Joseph in King of the Hill.

    And maybe I’ll need to see the movie again for.. uhh.. research purposes, but at one point a tornado sucks Gary’s jacket off, right? And if so, why couldn’t it take his shirt, too? Huh? HUH? Hmph.

    Now, I have never lived in a tornado-y place, so I have some questions…
    Are ALL the tornado sirens in town usually that easily wiped out?

    In the absence of tornado sirens would people still be milling around the shelter like they were at the school?

    I think they missed a real opportunity to have the Titus come down on top of the two annoying rednecks like Pete was some sort of modern Dorothy Gale. HOW AWESOME WOULD THAT HAVE BEEN?!


    1. we don’t need your cynicism here, go home! 😡 😀 I didn’t say the movie was perfect but believable enough. I genuinely liked it. but to address some of your issues:

      *I’m not sure how many sirens an area usually has. I have one in my backyard but I live very close to the county line so we can actually hear a siren from the neighboring county as well (which makes it hard to keep track of what is a new warning and what is just a repeat)
      *those were some serious downed power lines, they couldn’t go through them so what else were they supposed to do?
      *I’ve never been in a situation where I had to go to a designated town shelter so I don’t know how people usually act in them. with the absence of police and firemen though (which is unusual) they probably would just be standing around looking at each other.
      *don’t diss Freddy!(“ICarly”) were you trying to kill two pop culture references with one stone (Twilight & King of the Hill) or are you normally so racist? not all Indian tribes know or look like each other 🙄 😀


      1. You should know by now that I mock with love. I had a good time at the movie, even when I was guffawing at it. It was a carnival ride in movie form.

        I’m not saying they should have driven through the downed lines or that they could have even gone around them, I just found it hilarious that after looking for different escape routes they ended in a road that was completely dug up. I was waiting for the tornado to paint a tunnel on the side of a cliff to try to trick them.

        I’m not dissing anyone. I’m just saying Mrs. Gary may or may not have had a ‘headache healer’. And that kid totally looks like the love child between Jacob Black and Seth Clearwater. That’s not racism, it’s just fact.


        1. if you can’t mock it then it’s not true love, right? 😀 I can’t believe they drove towards the massive tornado at the end when their path was blocked. that actually got an audible squeal from me in the theater! 😯 it was a fun movie, not too deep but enough to make you think “what would I do?”. and you weren’t the only one who thought Trey aka Freddy resembled Jacob black, he kept his shirt on though 😉


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