Firestorm Reviews

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Super Reviewer
August 18, 2013
So ex-NFL player Howie Long got his big action man break in the Travolta thriller 'Broken Arrow' in 1996, this inevitably lead to his own specially made silly action vehicle. Although there are a few well known faces here simply to bolster the acting skills on show, its basically the Howie Long show yet he shows off no muscles throughout.

So four years ago the main villain stole four million Dollars and hid it deep within the forest. He now decides to break out of jail with some colleges during a big forest fire which one of his compadres on the outside started. Naturally a female is taken hostage and its up to the lone 'smokejumper' to save the day with his mighty axe.

The term 'smokejumper' is actually what they call these guys that are trained to jump from helicopters into fires to save people, its not me being sarcastic. But this is what's so funny about this film, right from the get go we are shown the banal camaraderie and makeup of the small team. These smokejumpers led by Long are your typical team of Hollywood characters, the attractive female, the mouthy young male, the wiser vet and Long who is the big butch guy. Only thing missing is the token black guy.

Luckily we don't have to put up with this A-Team type cliched machoism as the action centres on Long surviving in the wilderness against the bad guys. The bad guys are easily the more interesting bunch with William Forsythe as their homicidal leader. Gotta give credit to Forsythe as he always makes such a riveting nasty villain, his fierce chubby looks are just perfect the way he snarls and grimaces when he gets mad, and in this he just about kills anyone. Check the early performance for Barry Pepper as one of the bad guys.

The whole idea for this film is so thin really, its just an everyday action movie but its set within a huge forest fire. It just comes across as trying to make another field of US rescue workers out to be cool equipment wearing top guns. Of course Long uses all his trained boyscout methods to beat the bad guys whilst curiously never actually getting into any good fights, well not many.

I was gonna compare this to 'Backdraft' but its not really like that, that had some sense about it whilst this is complete violent nonsense. Despite that there are numerous visual moments which look pretty similar and its worth noting that Scott Glenn plays almost the same type of role in this as he does in 'Backdraft'.

The whole thing is predictable as hell and can't even come up with any decent visuals to help you along. Long is a weak leading man even though he has the look of one and things that happen along the way just raise questions, but its hardly a thinker, just dumb.
Super Reviewer
½ December 16, 2009
II am not much of a TV Movie or a Howie Long fan. Reason I watched this Movie was because Suzy Ames was in it and I am trying to watch all her movies, though Titanic will be torture to sit through (Chick Flick). This movie is about Fire jumpers on the west coast jumping and fighting forest fires. When movie started I figured it was going to be a boring and it was, but as the movie continued it become more exciting and enjoyable. I venture to say that this is the best of Howie Long. The maker of this movie and captured one's attention was William Forsythe the bad guy, and very bad guy at that as he eliminated his friends one by one. The movie itself is about a crew of fire jumpers coming across escaped con's and all are trapped in a forest fire. Suzy Amis plays a good part and adds some to the movie. Not bad for a TV Movie, but only 3 1/2 stars
Super Reviewer
February 21, 2007
Good and dangerously action of firestorm. Sometimes spectacular and often hailariously corny, but gosh darnit, occasionally educational. For instance, did you know that at 300 degrees trees explode from their boiling sap?
Super Reviewer
December 19, 2007
Something went badly wrong here. What was supposed to be a so-so action flick starring someone who plays baseball (or something), turned out to be a well-directed, smartly written and nicely paced action flick. They even made the effort to write in a decent villain. Somewhere between Con Air and Backdraft - and definitely worth a watch.
½ February 4, 2010
Not bad for a retire ex-football player...But I wouldn't recomend it unless you are extremely bored and there is nothing else on"
September 18, 2007
Ha ha. Howie Long. The scene at the end when he busts out of an upside down boat and tosses an axe into the head of the antagonist is so utterly ridiculous and laughable that I decided to give this film an entire star. But honestly, of all the possible sports stars to star in a movie, why Howie Long?
May 26, 2007
This movie was too much like Backdraft. You know someone purposely starting fires blah blah blah. Guess what? the same guy started the fires in this movie too. sorry to ruin it for y'all. I do love Howie though.
½ May 17, 2007
it was ok. Alot of hollywood bull shit in it. As a wildland firefighter my self it was just ok not relistic at all.
May 14, 2015
This is one of those 'so bad it's good movie...or at least watchable.
April 15, 2014
My Favorite Action Film Is 1988's Die Hard.
December 6, 2012
Stunk up the TV badly....
November 5, 2012
As far as former NFL defensive players, Howie is just a little better than Brian Bosworth as far as action stars go, but just alittle. Long plays a firefighter who fights fire out west in some National or State Park. One of his fellow firefighters, William Forsythe, sets a fire as cover for a prison escape and its up to Long to catch them, save his girlfriend, and stop the fire all the while explaining to the audience the dangers of a "firestorm." The acting and dialogue are terrible but the fire action scenes are pretty cool.
May 23, 2012
It's shocking that this was ever theatrically released. Hilariously bad but decently shot action fluff.
August 8, 2011
Apparently someone at 20th Century Fox saw something in former football star Howie Long after his supporting role in "Broken Arrow" that screamed "new action superstar". The result of that genius foresight is "Firestorm", a routine flick in which the "new action superstar" is constantly dwarfed by the special effects and the action. The opening moments are particularly impressive, and while it's obvious the forest fire is CGI, it doesn't feel that way. Because it's so spectacularly filmed by cinematographer-turned-director Dean Semler, I thought maybe the movie would buck the odds and be something special. But ten the plot kicks in.
It's your basic cons-on-the-run story that borrows heavily from other, better flicks like "Shoot to Kill", "Cliffhanger" and even "Broken Arrow". Long is certainly good-looking enough to be a star, but he's sorely lacking in charisma and comic timing. He's stiff and heavy-handed, and he's not helped in the least by the weak writing. And any good action film is defined by its villain, and that's yet another problem I had with this. William Forsythe can be a great bad guy, as he proved in "Out For Justice" among others. But here he's reduced to tired wise cracks and predictable bursts of violence. He's better than this weak material.
It's obvious that more thought went into staging the action sequences than character development or writing a script, and I guess that means at least "Firestorm" isn't a total loss. There are some gripping moments here, but I couldn't get into the story.
½ October 17, 2005
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