Tag Archives: Ryan Kwanten



by George Wolf

I like to imagine the pitch meeting went something like this:

Picture it: a desperate man, trapped in a remote roadside rest stop with an ancient monster named Ghat.

Who’s playing the monster?

The voice of J.K. Simmons.

Go on.

So our man’s in one stall, with the monster in the other, offering commands from behind a glory hole.

What’s it called?


You’re damn right it is, and Shudder wants it for August.

Well now it’s here, and while the downsized cast and location recalls a host of pandemic-era productions, director Rebekah McKendry makes the most of what she’s given. Glorious proceeds at an intriguing pace that never feels sluggish, showing us just enough of the tentacled bathroom beast to strike an effective balance between bloody Lovecraftian spectacle and doomsday humor.

True Blood‘s Ryan Kwanten is perfect as a sad, pantsless bathroom sack named Wes. Screenwriters Joshua Hull, Todd Rigney and David Ian McKendry give Wes a wisecrack-fueled arc that shifts from wallowing in the pain of losing Brenda (Sylvia Grace Crim) to bargaining with Ghat for the fate of humanity (and Simmons, of course, is priceless). While the character is never quite compelling, Kwanten settles in a notch of two below Ryan Reynolds on smartass scale, making it easy have an interest in where Wes’s trippy toilet trip ends up.

And you may catch on early to that destination, but the real test of how Glorious will hit you is how much love you have for Lovecraft. Even if it’s minimal, this is a bathroom break full of squalid, forgettable fun.

Sky Hard

The Hurricane Heist

by George Wolf

If your local TV weatherperson has a bit more swagger this week, there’s a good chance they’ve seen The Hurricane Heist and it’s heroic, badass meteorologist.

But it’s not just weatherman Will (Toby Kebbel) saving the day, there’s also ATF agent Casey (Columbus’ own Maggie Grace, repping home with an OSU cap), Will’s brother Breeze (Ryan Kwanten) and one ferocious weather system.

A thieving crew led by the scowling Perkins (Ralph Ineson from The VVitch) launches the latest big screen attempt to rob the treasury, but can you guess what makes this heist a little different?

There’s a hurricane!

What follows is big, dumb, and more fun than it oughta be.

Credit director Rob Cohen (The Fast and the Furious, xXx) with making the most of what he’s got, gunning for B-movie glory instead of overreaching. Let’s be honest, this setup is just south of Sharknado, but the pace is snappy, the effects are effective, and the adventure occasionally thrilling.

The writing team gives us easily identifiable characters that lean on cliche without being defined by them. Casey and Will are both damaged souls, natch, and heroic teamwork just might be their ticket to redemption. Perkins and his team of evil doers, clearly inspired by Hans Gruber’s iconic thieves in Die Hard, chew plenty of scenery while making it easy to cheer their eventual comeuppance.

The Hurricane Heist won’t tax you your brain, but it doesn’t want to. It just wants you to have fun.

You will, “weather” you expect to or not.

Catch phrase!