It is never really a good sign when the promo material for a film so prominently focuses on another product by the same film makers. For me It makes it look like they either have no faith in what they are trying to sell or it’s just plain lazy marketing. For The Hurricane Heist all of the attention was focused on Rob Cohen. He directed the first Fast & Furious movie back in 2001 and has had a bit of a mixed career since then. So, for the car racing film franchise to be lined up as a comparison does a bit of disservice to The Hurricane Heist as they are nothing alike. They even used the same poster design and typeface for the film as well. It doesn’t bode well.
It is storm season on the east coast of America. A warning has just been issued for a category one hurricane prompting the coastal towns to be evacuated. One such town is home to a federal reserve facility which destroys old and worn out currency. A group of thieves with inside connections take over the facility under the cover of the storm. What they didn’t take into account was a more than diligent Treasury agent changing a vital combination just before they arrive and her chance meeting with a meteorologist and his brother who stand by her when the bad guys are chasing her down.
This is such a predictable film. The story has been told, in one form or another, so many times before. Of course there are slight variations such as the main female character being the treasury agent, but the overall plot and story beats are fairly standard. We know that the main good guys are solid because they lost their father in the previous big storm some twenty years before. This has affected their relationship but crucially not their bond. We also know that despite everything the weather, and the bad guys, will throw at them they will stand together.
There is a partial effort to make the antagonists not quite as bad as they could be. They have a policy of not killing anyone during the initial break in to the facility. The problem with that approach is the way they go about it. Using what is in fact tranquilizer darts is all and well but in order to make it more action packed there are a hell of a lot of guards that get liberally sprayed with darts. Why bother using the technique if you end over causing an overdose of the sleeping agent. The cynic in me feels that this is actually used in order to get passed the PG 13 (12 in the UK) rating by avoiding bloodshed and pointing to the low body count. As noted this is only a partial effort. When the real action gets going its back to the standard fire fight scenes where, mysteriously, the trained gunmen can’t seem to shoot straight.
Unfortunately the spectacle fails to make up for the lack of plot or character development. it is one thing after another flying through the air as the hurricane hits the town. Without going into detail, the finale is one of the dumbest endings I have seen in a film. It’s a real WTF moment. It really makes no sense and any good will that may have been generated up until then is completely lost. There is a sense that they didn’t know how to end the film and just went with the first thought that came to mind.