[Movie Review] FIRENADO
FIRENADO l Uncork’d Entertainment
Oh goodness…

FIRENADO.

Fire…nado.

You know why you’re here, right? It’s not my actual review that you’re here for. It’s not the intricacies of filmmaking or the science of the real phenomenon. It’s not for a well and in-depth conversation about, er, FIRENADO. And to be fair, it wasn’t why I said, “Ehhhhhhummm, sure, I’ll watch it.”

It’s the spectacle, isn’t it? It’s the ridiculousness of its entire being. FIRENADO exists. That’s the intrigue. And the fact that FIRENADO was partially directed (Rhys Frake-Waterfield) by the producer of such incredible hits such as Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey, Pterodactyl, and Croc! is all part of the fun. The other director (Scott Jeffrey) is a producer of such hits like Toothfairy 5, Conjuring the Plastic Surgeon 2, and…also Pterodactyl.

So, you know in your bones what kind of movie FIRENADO is. And the funny part is that FIRENADO was my chaser to Christmas Twister…and at least Christmas Twister had Casper Van Dien…Wait a minute! Casper van Dien was in Fire Twister, as well! I’m smelling a Van Dien-tornado conspiracy…

Okay, okay, okay, here it is: FIRENADO – starring Sian Altman, Nicola Wright, Toby Wynn-Davies, Daniel Godfrey and…little else according to IMDB who doesn’t even list the full cast and some people as “Bodyguard” and “Moore’s guard.” It doesn’t even list casting, costume, editing, or sound. Stellar job.

So, the sad thing about FIRENADO is that the beginning is actually good. I enjoyed it. The shots of Anna (Sian Altman), along with her acting, were crisp and interesting. And then like a strange Bolero, it began to add on itself, and add, and add into nightmarish proportions.

The plot of FIRENADO is that Anna works for a mad scientist (Toby Wynn-Davies) and with two other twister chasers, Nicola Wright and a poor man’s Dusty from Twister. They are going to send a drone into a tornado in…Scotland? Somewhere in the UK, which in and of itself is baffling. But global warming, yadda yadda.

They manage to put a drone in the twister but the Dusty just stands there and gets sucked into the twister. Bad news. They’re sad. BUT, with the information that they find, they can now…possibly control tornadoes? So, it’s kinda Geostorm meets Twister meets the worst green screen you’ll ever see in your life.

So, only these storm chasers know that this twister is just…going to keep going, I guess. Classifying it as an F4, they literally drive through the countryside warning people to get out of their houses because I guess there isn’t a warning system in the UK. They really need to get on the ball over there.

Unfortunately, the tornado wrecks one gas station – er petrol station and thus becomes the titular character, FIRENADO.

Courtesy Uncork’d Entertainment

While the storm-chasers are on the way to the last house to warn them of the traveling twister, some tuffs are up to no good. The bad tuffs decide to rob the affluent home of the worst American accent I’ve ever heard (Daniel Godfrey). So, it’s basically now Geostorm meets Twister meets a single gas station fire meets Hurricane Heist.

Once Anna and her crew get to the house, she can tell that something sinister is happening and decides to risk her life for this mysterious bad-American-accent man. Sparks of their newfound attraction fly in the danger — sparks as hot as a FIRENADO! But can they save themselves from the tuffs AND the horrendous FIRENADO heading their way?

As I said, you’re here for fun and I applaud you. These movies are fast, cheap, and wacky; they’re not meant or made to be taken seriously. While there’s a disappointing lack of a certain Van Dien, the cast is actually not too bad. Sian Altman and Nicola Wright are worth watching and, like Van Dien, really try to work with what they’re given. Props to Toby Wynn-Davies, as well, for keeping a straight face for having some of the most ridiculous lines. He’s a pro. All three of them are absolute pros.

But, as the IMDB credits show, FIRENADO isn’t a movie with a touch of love, spit, and sweat. FIRENADO doesn’t feel or act like anyone’s baby. It’s a sensational movie to get a few people to watch and riff it. Probably in thirty years, it’ll be on someone’s old hard drive and people will be riffing it all over again, but the main focus isn’t art or pushing boundaries. It’s for a cheap profit and thrill, just as I watched it, and just as you’re reading this.

The bottom line is this: you’ve seen this before. Probably better, too. FIRENADO isn’t breaking any boundaries, but it’s not to say it can’t be enjoyed. If that’s your kind of movie, if that’s your jam, silly and mindless goofs, then this might be up your alley. It’s a goof. And it’s better than Croc! at least.

FIRENADO blazes onto digital Jan 3, 2023, from Uncork’d Entertainment. A DVD will follow in February.

J.M. Brannyk
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