Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

Now this is a novel concept. A nutty meteorologist or something, as played by the legendary Stacey Keach, is really upset at the weak livered liberals in the government who have shuttered his revolutionary Project Thunderbolt. I think that’s what he called it. What Dr. Marcus Grange has dreamed up is a new way to manipulate the weather as a Weapon of Mass Destruction, and he was this close to making this a reality until the jerk off Senator Aldrich (Lance E. Nichols) pulled his funding. No problems, even though it took some time, Dr. Grange has made his wacky tech a reality and is now controlling the weather and causing a ruckus using his Smart Phone. Who knew there was an app for that? He must be stopped! The movie is called ‘Storm Wars’, renamed from ‘Weather Wars’ which kind of sounds pretty much the same, it’s a Sci-Fi Channel Original and it’s not the worst Sci-Fi original I’ve ever seen.

So we’re in Washington D.C. hanging out with beat cop David Grange (Jason London) who observes the weird weather conditions, like Red Rain, and makes some real fancy, techy, meteorological type comments about what could be going on. How does a beat cop know all of this fancy lingo? Then we meet David’s estranged brother Jacob (Wes Brown) who also has the meteorological knowledge gene as their father raised his boys to be mad scientists just like him, but David rebelled at against Mad Scientology. Jacob tells David that their old man has gone nuts and is controlling the weather, David tells Jacob that this isn’t possible and kicks him out of his ridiculously fancy Washington D.C. loft that looks a little rich for beat cop’s salary. Jacob, in turn, jumps in his dope GTO and drives away all depressed and stuff. The third corner of this isosceles triangle is Dr. Grange’s far too hot grad assistant Samantha (Erin Cahill) who tried to call the FBI about her suspicions that Dr. Grange is controlling the weather, but they hung up on her because she sounds dumb.

Eventually these three get together and now the brothers know that their dad is killing people via the weather, and something has to be done about it. The easy thing to do would be to just catch this guy and detain him, and they had the chance to do this when they spotted the old dude at a homeless shelter. The guy is close to seventy, he’s fat,

and he can barely walk without stopping to take a breath. These three seem to be in tip top physical condition. One has to wonder how this fat old man gave these three remarkable physical specimens the slip in basically an open field. Apparently the old dude can use his smart phone as a matter displacement device as well is the only way I can explain it.

Regardless, the Grange boys and the hot chick have been rounded up by the government to go into a big room and look real serious-like at computer monitors, to hopefully stop the old man who has vowed to destroy the world. Why does he want to kill us all? Hell if I know. I think he’s made his point and all, that being that Smart Phones and Jetstreams are dangerous when combined together, but there he goes making it rain. And not in the good Gentleman’s Club way.

Okay. ‘Storm Wars’ has it’s challenges as piece of viable cinematic entertainment, this much is true, but it does get off to a good start. Obviously the concept of using the weather as a WMD via your Droid-X is pretty crazy, and the filmmakers don’t really go into too much detail on how this is remotely possible, but with Stacey Keach chewing up scenery like it’s a stick of Juicy Fruit with flavor crystals, and with Jason London and Wes Brown looking super serious all of the time, we gotta admit that director Todor Chapkonov, the director of ‘Monster Wolf’, got us hooked in a little bit.

But even though they baited the hook pretty good, they allowed me wriggle off that sucker as things started to get just a little too stupid. The stupid stuff started with the matter displacing fat old man, followed up by the Worst FBI Agents Ever who were chasing our heroes through a parking garage. A team of FBI agents with guns should be able to catch a pair of Old Navy models and a hot chick, but they were outsmarted because our heroes hid behind a car. Clever. Then our villain hijacks the video airwaves to announce to the world that he plans to destroy it. That’s cool and all, but when he walks into the Supreme Court building looking just as fat and crazy as he did five minutes ago on TV, albeit wearing an ill-fitting suit this time, you would think he’d be recognized. Nope. Coasted right in, killed up a bunch of people amidst a throng of armed Secret Service agents, then used his powers of matter displacement to disappear again. This is one slippery cat. Then there was the senator who suffered a real tragic loss in this movie, a loss he handled as if he had just misplaced his car keys.

But we do admit we prefer stupid plot points to the usual Sci-Fi Disaster Movie fare of people in a room looking seriously at computer monitors, which basically is what this last half an hour amounted to, with disaster bits tossed in to keep us on our toes. They also completely lost me on the science of this final scenario, not that I wasn’t really understanding anything to begin with, but this where the ‘War’ part of ‘Storm War’ came in with battling Cold Fronts and now I’m officially baffled. I don’t know how they made this happen, despite the plethora of fancy meteorological chatter, but at least the special effects were improved over what we usually get out of these movies.

There was some family melodrama tossed in, which normally I could do without, but this time it made the movie a little more interesting mainly because the actors involved were pretty good and there was action aplenty before we got stuck looking at people look at computer monitors. But most importantly, if you’re a member of the London family, Jason London’s bad weather Sci-Fi Original movie is way better than his brother Jeremy’s bad weather Sci-Fi Original movie ‘Ba’al: The Storm God’ which gives Jason the bad weather movie bragging rights at Thanksgiving.

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