The Hurricane Heist

Movie review by
Michael Ordona, Common Sense Media
The Hurricane Heist Movie Poster Image
Stormy action movie mixes gunplay, disaster-movie peril.
  • PG-13
  • 2018
  • 100 minutes

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 5 reviews

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 4 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Brotherly love and loyalty pay off. Toughness and courage are rewarded. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Casey is a smart, powerful female federal agent. She has feelings, tries to do the right thing, and doesn't treat people like dirt to show she's tough. Will defies country-bumpkin stereotypes by being a brilliant scientist from small-town Alabama. 


A father is killed in a storm in front of his kids. A fair amount of gunplay, first with knockout darts, then with actual bullets. Car crashes, one resulting in a broken arm. Brutal beating of a helpless prisoner, but more is implied than shown. Several people get swept up in the tornado-like winds. The violence isn't portrayed particularly realistically and doesn't have lasting emotional impact, but plenty of cuts and bruises are shown. 


Some making out during a getaway. Evidence of a night of passion in the form of someone's panties being found the next morning. 


Not pervasive, but words including "s--t," "d--k," "hell," "ass," "bitch," "goddamn," and "Jesus Christ" are used. There is also a muffled word that could be "f--k."


Skippy, Jif, and Smuckers are mentioned briefly.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

One adult character drinks (for breakfast) and may be an alcoholic; the character carries a flask. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Hurricane Heist (starring Ryan Kwanten, Maggie Grace, and Toby Kebbell) is a hybrid disaster/crime adventure with lots of gunplay and high winds but little violence with lasting emotional impact. A father dies in front of his kids during a hurricane, but the peril is never terrifying or horrifying. There's infrequent strong language (including "s--t" and "bitch"), a little innuendo, and one character who drinks excessively. The most difficult things for most audiences will be the inescapable dim blue light and the high-volume storm noises throughout. And, on the plus side, there are messages about the value of loyalty and courage, and one of the main characters is a smart, powerful woman.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byTherealhurrican... January 5, 2019

Worst movie in history

Ok, i don’t know how to put this in words. The second worst movie I’ve ever seen is about 100 times better than this abomination. Having studied how hurricanes... Continue reading
Adult Written byJana D. January 1, 2019

Not suited for kids under 12

It was a pretty good show. It was funny and entertaining. There were a couple of scary parts and a few violent parts and some swearing that isn't documente... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old February 7, 2021

Bad Movie

This film is a great example of horrible film making. It's is just horrible. there's barely any action, it has a good plot but they couldn't actu... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old July 14, 2019


it sucks to violent

What's the story?

When they were boys, brothers Will and Breeze saw their father killed by a hurricane. Now grown, Will (Toby Kebbell) is a brilliant climate scientist, and Breeze (Ryan Kwanten) is a hard-drinking repairman. The very different brothers meet again as a monster hurricane bears down on their Alabama hometown. Meanwhile, federal agent Casey (Maggie Grace), charged with ushering hundreds of millions of old, used dollars to their retirement via the industrial shredder, finds an extremely well-coordinated and knowledgeable team trying to rob the treasury in the brothers' town on her watch. Hence the title: THE HURRICANE HEIST. 

Is it any good?

This is pretty much what you expect when you pay to see a movie with this title: a few fun action sequences, a lot of genre clichés, CGI disaster effects, and unemotional violence. Oh, and the bonus of a watchable female action hero. It seems fairly certain that somewhere in the pitch process, the phrases "Die Hard in a hurricane" or "Under Siege meets Twister" were used. The Hurricane Heist dutifully hits the expected notes: There's an unorthodox scientist who gets ignored by the government functionaries, a cop (here a federal agent) with a dreadful error in her past, strained family ties, and an elaborate heist that relies on an inside man. But the film is actually better than the sum of its used parts. Its virtues include unusual attention to scientific detail -- although, truthfully, enough gobbledygook flies by to make you wonder whether the things the characters rattle off about climate science or cyberwhatsits are real or made up on the spot. The heist target -- millions in cash that's marked for destruction -- is interesting, and the writers have taken care to credibly trap the outnumbered good guys with the suspiciously good-looking and well-dressed bad guys. And a few neat gags -- including letting hubcaps fly in high winds as weapons -- that help elevate the movie. But dragging it down is the persistent, dim-blue look that's meant to simulate storm conditions but really achieves mild eye strain, plus the very high volume of the storm sound effects throughout. 

Oddly, the cast has a number of Aussies (Kwanten) and Brits (Kebbell, Ben Cross) playing Deep Southerners. Only Cross struggles with the accent. As the brothers, Kwanten and Kebbell have amiable chemistry. It's interesting to see how Kwanten has changed in a relatively short time: The recently oft-shirtless True Blood hunk convincingly projects a broken-down, semi-bitter dead-ender here. And Kebbell seems to have fun as the scientist with a gleam in his eye who's forced to run away from bad guys. But Grace acquits herself best, providing a compelling center for the action part of the film. She looks solid while fighting, shooting, and running with a weapon. The somewhat underused actress delivers yet another authentic-feeling, non-over-the-top performance. If it doesn't quite ride the winds to Oz, Hurricane Heist is at least better than you might expect. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the elements that make The Hurricane Heist a hybrid of two genres: disaster and crime/heist movie. Does the crossover make it more interesting than the average film in either genre, or is it too much? 

  • Most of the violence in this movie is pretty bloodless. How does that affect its impact?

  • Several characters die due to the super-hurricane, but little attention is paid to them (with two exceptions) because they're mostly bad guys. Does that make their deaths less significant?

  • Which characters are role models? Why? Do they demonstrate any positive character strengths?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love action

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