Unfortunately for director Jamie Blanks he got his big break in the late ‘90s when the “Scream” trend was finally coming to an end. His films URBAN LEGEND and VALENTINE might now have been the best films, but he is still quite a talented director, which is why I was pretty damn excited for STORM WARNING. I didn’t know what to expect from the movie, but the fact that Dimension Films acquired it had to mean something. In the end, STORM WARNING might not be groundbreaking, but it’s a still a great thrill ride loaded with scares, laughs and loads of gore.
The film, which combines elements of “Deliverance” and “Straw Dogs,” follows a husband and wife on a fishing trip gone very wrong. When deranged locals capture them, the wife fights back in a gory battle.
STORM carries a lot of the same elements from classic films like SPIDER BABY, TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE and even DELIVERANCE, as the movie is a fish out of water horror film. There’s nothing worse than being in the wrong place at the wrong time. After getting lost on a boating trip the couple end up lost in the middle of a storm with only a house in the middle of nowhere as shelter. When nobody answers the door they break and enter, looking for a phone, which leads to all of the problems. If they had stayed out of the house would things have different? Probably not, but still there’s some uncomfortable level where you kind of get where the crazy locals are coming from.
But what truly sick about Everett De Roche’s screenplay is how he primes our lead girl into a killing machine. First she’s forced to kill a baby kangaroo and eat it, and then when her husband is beaten and has his leg broken she’s forced to become the same thing that’s hunting her – a cold-blooded killer. There are no leaps and bounds in terms of the plot, but Everett does manage to craft some unsettling dialogue and vicious scenarios that give the film its own identity.
I wasn’t a huge fan of the acting from the husband, but the wife really does make her transition believable. And the trio of locals, who are compared to “the three bears” from the GOLDIE LOCKS nursery rhyme, are incredible in their roles.
Even with a quality story, screenplay and acting, a horror film like this isn’t complete without a mass amount of blood and guts. STORM WARNING delivers on all accounts sharing with us three standout gore moments. The finale is sure to have you screaming “holy sh-t!”
Although the film is pretty damn cliché, it’s still a fun ride that gives homage to loads of classic films without disrespecting them. Gore hounds will be delighted with the amount of bloodshed and everyone else will find solace in a pretty damn good story. When this hit’s DVD in February I highly recommend checking it out.