Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Twister (1996)

This is a solid movie. Bill Harding (Bill Paxton) and his fiancée Dr. Melissa Reeves drive to Oklahoma in order to get the divorce papers signed by his estranged wife Dr. Jo Harding (Helen Hunt). When Jo was only five years old her father was killed in a tornado, and ever since she has been obsessed with them. When Bill hears about an upcoming storm he decides to stick around with the old team. Their goal is to send up an electronic research device into the tornado so they can learn how it forms and moves. A rival team with corporate sponsors is hoping to achieve the same outcome.

The script was co-written by Michael Crichton and his wife Anne-Marie Martin. Steven Spielberg was one of the executive producers. Twister was the second-highest grossing film of 1996 (only behind Independence Day). It was also the first film to be released on DVD. An inspiration for the machine in the film was a barrel-shaped device nicknamed TOTO, which was invented in 1979, but was never much of a success because it would fall down during high winds. On May 24, 1996, a tornado destroyed a drive-in theater in Niagara Falls, Ontario which was scheduled to show the movie. On May 10, 2010, a tornado struck Fairfax, Oklahoma, destroying the farmhouse where numerous scenes were shot.

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