The most bluntly titled thriller since ‘Snakes on a Plane’, ‘The Hurricane Heist’ is neither good enough nor bad enough to command eyeballs. Still coasting on being the director of the first ‘The Fast and the Furious’ a full 17 years ago, Rob Cohen is unable to muster true engagement with the banal plot and characters, or deliver the kind of inspired ridiculousness that makes for a guilty pleasure.
Toby Kebbell, a good British actor doing a bad Southern accent, stars as Will, a meteorologist in Alabama (by way of Bulgarian filming locations). Will and his brother, Breeze (Ryan Kwanten from ‘True Blood’), a mechanic, witnessed their father getting blown away by Hurricane Andrew as children; these days the siblings are estranged. But, of course, they must put aside their differences to defeat a gang of ruthless thieves attempting to rip off a local Treasury facility of $600 million in old bills, just as Category 5 Hurricane Tammy is rolling into town. Maggie Grace (‘Lost’) is Casey, an ATF agent with a past, while the bad guys are led by the ominous patriarch from ‘The Witch’, Ralph Ineson (thankfully not phoning it in).
The screenplay by Jeff Dixon and Scott Windhauser (yes, that’s his real name) is largely comprised of expository dialogue and unlikely developments, and Cohen wrangles the workmanlike action with professionalism but not much flair. A true ‘good-bad flick’ has to catch us off-guard with its audacity and ridiculousness, and too much of ‘The Hurricane Heist’ is rote. This one’s just blowing through theatres on its way to streaming services.