Let’s talk about the only movie like this that can actually claim it ISNT ripping off Sharkenado. Sure, it was released on DVD in various territories after Sharkenado proved to be an incredibly popular surprise hit, but it released two years prior and wasn’t even made by The Asylum, but from the fairly unknown Capital Productions, which otherwise did a dozen of TV movies about office & school thriller dramas, with Metal Tornado being their only disaster movie.
With a title like that, it does seem pointless to go over the plot, but we’ll do it anyway as pro-forma, i mean, it’s not quite trying to cash into the Asylum wheelhouse.
So one merry day in Pennsylvania the Helios World Inc company is built, in order to solve the world’s energy crisis by harvesting energy from solar flares. One scientist finds a design flaw, tries to warn the upper management, but the company CEO decides to move ahead with the project, and in doing so accidentally unleashes a self-perpetuating huge metal tornado that rampages on the rural area surrounding the Helios World operative base.
Only one the leading scientists on the project suspects that something isn’t right, and then tries to stop the tornado… well, tornadoes, as the company’s french branch creates another one in Paris.
Thinking about it more, it’s most likely the opposite scenario one would imagine when tackling a movie like this today, as in, quite likely The Asylum saw this and did trash movie history.
Of course, we had plenty of disaster movies about tornadoes before and since, but the script has some striking similarities, with the tornado manifesting itself and shown very early in the movie,and what saves the day it’s them dropping a bomb into the tornado…. yep, this time is a EMP bomb, but still, i refuse to believe The Asylum didn’t saw this and figured out they could make it shlockier, stupider and… admittely more entertaining and memorable by adding sharks and caring even less about pretenses of realism or scientific accuracy.
It’s clear it’s also a TV movie because one guy is about to be squashed by its truck or killed by farm equipment, cuts away before impact, then later we get told they survived, people die but it’s mostly an annoying girl in her car whisked into the tornado like Dorothy and never seen again, it’s implicit like with the tornado in Paris, they don’t actually manage to stop that in time, outright saying that thus Paris got destroyed big time by it… and barely even acknowledge that, the “AmericansTM” won their battle, so to the movie ignores that big ass failure in order to avoid a downer ending.
Classic american (or american-canadian, since it’s actually shot in Quebec) TV movie ending. XD
The effects are in awkward state of “quality”, above something from Cinetel but slightly worse than the Asylum. Slightly, as in they’re about the same level of cheap CG effects for anything involving the tornado, the “magnetic effects”, but the Asylum’s brand effects just happen to be slightly less shit, not exactly more convincing, but slightly better to look at, i guess.
Stupid characters with bad overacting performances, with the top billed ones having decades of experience as TV actors (but most of the cast being made of people you must likely never seen or heard of) , token conflict, dumbass cliches, the bullshit way many objects become airborne or are snatched away due to the magnetic force being so goofy that’ll make you at least chuckle a bit, especially opposed to some pretense of seriousness and plausibility the movie has, they all combine and overall make Metal Tornado strangely more bearable (and i guess watchable) than expected.
It’s inoffensive TV time-wasting disaster fare with some quite laughable effects and science Neil deGrasse Tyson most likely would not approve, not good or SO bad to be downright memorable or fun to talk about. On the flipside, it’s not bad or boring to the point of deserve proper chastizing, so i won’t and will just peter out and shut up myself.