Starring: Ian Ziering, Tara Reid (!), John Heard
You may like this if you like: Sand Sharks (Mark Atkins, 2011), Arachnoquake (Griff Furst, 2012), basically any syfy channel/Asylum cheap but enjoyable crap
Warning: This review may contain blatant sarcasm!
Nature unleashes a serious of terrifying Tornadoes on Los Angeles, destroying and flooding the city. However that is just the start, as these tornadoes have picked up hundred of sharks from the ocean and are now dropping them on the flooded city.
At one point a character poignantly points out “Tornadoes pick up anything, so why not sharks?” Well that is a very good question, and quite possibly the question someone asked when pitching the idea for this very film. Yes, The Asylum are back with their latest, well I say ‘back’, as they seem to churn out these straight to syfy channel films more often than I have hot dinners they never really left. So once again they have a new film out that invents a new word, stars a (sort of) famous name and this time simply have the tagline “enough said!” They certainly know what they are doing and fair play to them.
For those very few that are not aware of The Asylum and might somehow expect a good film, then of course avoid this as it is obviously bad in so more ways than I could ever possibly describe. For the rest of us, we can only embrace everything The Asylum stand for and adopt the slightly demented philosophy that what would normally make a film bad is in fact the very thing that makes it good.
Though they may never top Mega Shark Vs Giant Octopus which for me may well be their 9th Symphony, by The Asylum’s lofty standards Sharknado is one of their best and in some ways a genius concept. Expect the usual painful low budget caused inconsistencies of the weather (in particular the cloud cover) changing by the second. You have raining, sunny, cloudy, hurricane all in a matter of seconds depending on which camera they seem to be using.
We start with our heroes in a cafe on a pier and as the water and sharks start flooding the place one character rightfully states “Better grab something dangerous”. As the weather gets worse the bar’s owner (Ziering) decides that he has to save his family as they live only 6.6 miles from the coast, which is apparently not far enough. These four characters not only contain our hero, but a man who is a wise cracking maverick. He is Australian and some of the one liners he comes out with are so horrifically bad that they are extremely funny. We have an old drunkard, the joke is that he never leaves his stool and he uses the stool to kill a shark! He then uses that moment to state “never mock the stool”, so even a bar stool gets a character arc, that has to be a film first! We also have the female character; she has a scar on a leg from a shark attack as a child. As she has to confront her fear of sharks her character is given real genuine depth. Of course most normal people are scared of sharks, so that may lessen the power of that character arc a bit? Who cares? Naturally our hero’s family are an estranged family, as his ex wife (Reid, praying for another American Pie film to be made) and two children hate him, bringing real character depth to the already intense action. Of course, the ex wife’s new boyfriend is total wanker and our hero has to win back the love of his family as well as save the day. It is good to see screen writer Thunder Levin (is that really his real name?!?) has written a strong script that avoids any clichés!
The action never stops as of course we have to care about the main characters, but the fate of the rest of population of Los Angeles is totally irrelevant. Naturally the tornadoes (with added sharks) picks and chooses what it destroys. For example, it destroys an entire airfield but the one helicopter that they need to save the day remains untouched!
The final 20 minutes are nothing short of intense mind blowing action. I of course will not spoil it, but how our heroes’ stop this catastrophe is physics defying genius. Having that chainsaw to hand most certainly comes in handy!
The Asylum have once again delivered the goods, anyone who is a fan of their work will not be disappointed. I personally laughed for 85 minutes and would expect anyone else to do the same.
To prevent any anxieties, the sequel is already in the pipeline…..