The Hurricane (1937)

Genres - Adventure  |   Sub-Genres - Adventure Drama, Disaster Film, Escape Film  |   Release Date - Nov 9, 1937 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 110 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Review by Craig Butler

Though dated and in places a bit silly, The Hurricane still gets high marks and comes out on top. Truth to tell, Hurricane would rate highly if for no other reason than because its climactic title sequence is one of the most stunning put on film. While listed as a John Ford film, this sequence was actually directed by Stuart Heisler (with the undeniable and invaluable help of special effects wizards James Basevi and R.O. Binger). Make no mistake about it: this sequence is a real humdinger. Even many decades later, it packs a real, thrilling punch. Yes, some of effects work is obvious and doesn't compare to the CGI version of such things. But even so, it makes its mark. Now, things are not always so enthralling leading up to the hurricane; this is a film with definite ups and downs, and the melodramatic story is not always as engaging as you might wish. Too, the male lad, Jon Hall, though physically impressive, doesn't really convince as an island native. But the rest of the cast is solid, filled with notable players such as Thomas Mitchell, C. Aubrey Smith, Mary Astor, Raymond Massey and the eternally-saronged Dorothy Lamour. They keep your interest when the story sags here and there.