Casper Van Dien and Robert Englund stage a daring casino robbery on the resort island ofSandbridge. (Where does Van Dien get his helicopter from? Don’t ask.) As we move fromfull night to mid-afternoon in a matter of minutes, our affable criminals are pursued at high speedand finally caught by security chief Gregg Henry (doing his clench-jawed villainy familiar fromPayback, and lifted from Gary Busey). Casino owner Ray Wise (Leland Palmer fromTwin Peaks) gives Van Dien…and Englund another chance and hires them as security. Helater tells Van Dien that he suspects Henry is, in fact, untrustworthy. His suspicions prove well-founded. Meanwhile, a powerful hurricane is heading for the island.
The hurricane actually plays a relative minor role in the film, providing some visual interestduring the climactic gun battles and chases. One wishes it were a bigger player, since thecharacters are uninteresting, the action scenes are routine, and the plot is nonsensical. We areasked to believe, for instance, that an automatic-weapon rampage in broad daylight through acrowd of tourists is never noticed by the police. While the technical aspects are competentenough, the result is on a par with a network TV movie-of-the-week.
The 2.0 sound isn’t top-flight, but nonetheless gets the job done. Not all the surround effectsare well-placed, but once the hurricane hits, the audio is at its best, with the wind audible in therear even during the interior scenes. There’s a nice rich sound to the explosions as well, and thedialogue is distortion-free.
The fullscreen picture has acceptable, but unspectacular, colours. Its blacks and flesh tonesare fine. Edge enhancement and grain present no problems, but what does is the fact the theimage is very soft. Characters in long-shot are so blurred you feel the need to make anappointment with your optometrist. About 41 minutes in, the picture breaks up for a moment.Curiously, the credits are all in French, with the title appearing as “Face à l’Ouragan.”
Just the trailer. The menu’s main screen is scored.
About as textbook a definition of “mediocre” as you could hope to find. To be seen only ifthere really isn’t anything else available.
Special Features List