Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

The Sci-Fi original ‘Alien Tornado’ opens with a shot of high school student Kelly Walker, played by actress Stacey Asaro, getting off of a high school bus.  Now with all due respect to Stacey Asaro, who is a very lovely woman, her wearing a ‘Hello Kitty’ tank top no more makes her look like a ‘high school’ student than me putting on a Donovan McNabb Jersey makes me look like an NFL quarterback.  Just saying she looks a little long in the tooth to be a high school senior is all.  Regardless, Kelly is happy because she just blew out her SAT’s, and considering she should be completing her graduate thesis, she should’ve blown them out.  She tells her old man Farmer Judd, played by the legendary Jeff Fahey, but he’s not as happy as Stacey wants him to be.  He says he’s happy, she says he’s not.  She says he’s jealous, he says he not.  They go on and on with this so when the tornado embedded with the pretty green lights show up wrecking stuff we’re very happy.  It’s an Alien Tornado by the way.

A few miles away in the Big City, this city being Chicago, even though I’d bet my last bottom dollar that this movie was filmed in Louisiana, we meet legendary storm chaser Gail Curtis played by the legendary Kari Wuhrer.  The woman is well into her forties, still tight as drum and can still vamp it up with the best of them.  Anyway, Gail has gotten word that there are all kinds of disturbances showing up across the U.S., though the weather service hasn’t recorded any of them.  She asked some bureaucrat played by the legendary Griff Furst in a cameo, because you know that State law mandates that one is not allowed to make low budget Sci-Fi movies in Louisiana without Griff Furst showing up in it,  and he blows her off.  Good thing the biggest fan of her tornado blog (?) just sent her video of one of these twisters, so it’s off to Podunk Illinois to check it out.

So in Podunk Gail hooks up with Daisy, or whatever her name was, and who was channeling the ghost of Kathy Bates in Misery as Gail’s biggest fan.  She also meets Judd the Farmer and Norm the Sheriff (Willard E. Pugh).  Judd and Gail don’t get along because Judd don’t like no fancy science talk, and Gail used the word ‘undulates’ to describe a cow.  Gotta agree with Judd here because the word ‘cow’ works so much better than ‘undulates’.  If she wasn’t so hot and didn’t have boobs pressed together bunching out of her tank top, I’d hate her too for calling a cow an undulate.  Oh well.

Also on the Alien Tornado scene is government agent Armstrong (David Jensen) and his assistants the Soul Brothers of Oppression  in agents Cox (Marcus Lyle Brown) and Jasper.  Neither of these cats got any kind of credit in the IMDB, and I only know that Cox was played by Marcus Lyle Brown because I watch a lot of awful Louisiana based Sci-Fi movies and he’s in them almost as much as Griff Furst is.  I’d bet those two are best friends.  Anyway, Armstrong and the Soul Brothers are assuring Gail, Judd and Norm that nothing is going on, just your random every day tornado embedded with green neon lights sucking people into the sky.  Nothing to see here.  They don’t believe them. 

Turns out the tornado is Alien is nature, as cracked by Judd’s high school daughter Kelly, who apparently speaks alien gibberish.  But what do these aliens want?  Well…  Not a Damn Thing.  Nope, they just want to wreck stuff.  Mainly ‘Chicago’.  We need to turn them away.  If only someone knew how to speak alien gibberish.  Oh!  Would you look over there… the girl who just blew out her SAT’s knows the ‘Kill Code’ or whatever they called it.  Can Judd, the hot storm chaser, Armstrong and the Soul Brothers and Norm save us all?  Norm won’t because Norm was pretty useless in this movie.  Spent most of the film knocked unconscious. 

What can we tell you about this one?  I mean it’s a movie about a tornado that is alien in nature, has no goal, no rhyme or reason to anything it does, it’s neither evil nor benevolent and it seems to lack even basic intelligence.  As far as bad guys in movies go, the Alien Tornado is one of the lamest.  Does this mean we hated ‘Alien Tornado’?  No it doesn’t.  Jeff Fahey was in this movie sporting a frizzed out mullet, Kari Wuhrer was in this movie doing what Kari does, though we gotta admit we liked what Kari was doing back in the mid 90’s way more, and Terry Kiser was in this movie?  Who?  Bernie?  Weekend at Bernie’s?  Terry Freaking Kiser man, and he was pure genius in this movie, just like he was in ‘Weekend at Bernie’s II’.  But Willard  E. Pugh as Norm basically stole the movie.  He was completely useless as an officer of the law, the Alien Tornado knocked him unconscious with a piece of random wood, Armstrong knocked him unconscious with his Super Taser, and during the gauntlet run to restart the generator to launch the ‘kill code’… it’s complicated… he fell down and he wouldn’t get back up until somebody died trying to help him get up and then he STILL stayed on the ground until two other dudes risked their lives to save his sorry ass.  Norm was pretty damned awesome in this movie.

Yes, the film can be stupid considering aliens are ripping the U.S. apart and the governments solution is to kill everybody who knows something isn’t right… which is basically everybody in the country.  And maybe this government should dispatch more than one over-actor and two soul brothers in black jump suits adorned with orange duct tape to deal with this Extinction Level Event.  I’m just saying.  And who in hell hears radio noise gibberish and automatically assumes, correctly, that it’s Alien’s trying to talk to each other?  And why did Gail get into her Ford Escape to chase a tornado wearing blue jeans and a white shirt, and then stepped out of the truck wearing black jeans and an orange shirt?  Sure ‘Alien Tornado’ is basic SyFy nonsense, but some reason we enjoyed this more than we do most of the others.  Maybe it was Kari and the twins.  Who knows. 

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