Tornado Alley: Confessions of a Fanpire

Written by Fanpire and Official Storm Spotter, Natasha

After eight years of filming tornadoes Sean Casey finally released his IMAX film, Tornado Alley. For most people their journey with Sean began in 2007 when Discovery Channel started airing the hit show Storm Chasers. The show followed filmmaker Sean and meteorologist Josh Wurman, head of Vortex 2, a caravan of satellites, probes and other instruments to aid them in finding out exactly how and why tornadoes form. Sean and his crew drove the TIV (Tornado Intercept Vehicle), a metal armored vehicle that could withstand winds of 200 mph. The two worked together. If Josh got Sean to intercept a tornado then Josh would gain valuable information about tornadoes and Sean would get the shot he need to complete his IMAX film. Episode after episode Josh was not able to get Sean the shot he needed. Then near the end of season three a miracle happened, Josh was able to direct Sean into the path of a tornado and Sean finally got the shot he needed to complete his film. This should have been the end of Sean Casey trying to get the near impossible shot.

But, then season four rolled around and yet again Sean needed to intercept a tornado. This time was different, he need to get a shot of the TIV driving into a tornado. An IMAX crew would be in a vehicle behind his filming the whole thing. Sean had also branched off on his own and was no longer taking advice from Josh. One can only assume he was tired of being shown up by Reed Timmer, Extreme Meteorologist. Reed had joined the show and quickly stole Sean’s thunder (pun intended). With nothing but a laptop and a video camera Reed was able to film at least one tornado per episode. He was even able to accidentally intercept a tornado, making Sean look like a fool for taking so many years to do the same. Sean continually mocked Reed behind his back, not able to contain how jealous he was.  — Yes Reed is over the top and cocky, but he gets results unlike Sean.

Tornado Alley should have been an awesome movie about tornadoes with amazing IMAX shots of several tornadoes and their destruction. Instead it was a 40 minute crappy version of Storm Chasers narrated by Bill Paxton. Yet again the audience got to watch Sean Casey try to get his impossible shot of intercepting a tornado. I’m sorry but I thought he was making an IMAX film about tornadoes not about Sean Casey. There were exactly two awesome shots of tornadoes and one of them can be seen in the trailer. What did Sean Casey do with all the footage he shot before he went on his quest for the impossible shot? When did he decide the movie should be about Sean Casey? I go to see a movie called Tornado Alley I want to see some damn tornadoes; not a film about a whiny filmmaker complaining about not getting his shot. I heard the man complain for four seasons of Storm Chasers, enough is enough, show me the tornadoes.

Sean claims this is his life’s work and took him eight years to complete, well I’m sorry Sean Casey you are a shitty filmmaker. This film is nothing but a poorly condensed version of four seasons of Storm Chasers. There may be two minutes of the film that were really neat to see on an IMAX screen, otherwise you could watch it at home and get the same enjoyment out of it. The man was filming for eight years and this is all he has to offer his audience, a 40 minute Sean Casey ego stroke. The film ended with Sean Casey finally getting his intercept shot for the film. Yet it cuts away to show Sean filming the intercept instead of the intercept itself. What?!?

I may have enjoyed this movie more if I had never seen Storm Chasers and had no idea this movie was supposed to have actual tornadoes in it. The whole film seems like such a waste. I don’t agree with the direction he took with it. The Sean Casey story already played out on TV. If I had known he was making a movie about himself I would have avoided Tornado Alley altogether.

5 thoughts on “Tornado Alley: Confessions of a Fanpire

  1. Natasha, this is the most succinct, accurate review I’ve ever read and precisely describes my feelings as I left the theater. Hell, there’s better stuff on YouTube. And while thunderstorms and a vortex or two are impressive in IMAX, there’s nothing more terrifying than an eight-story high, whining Sean Casey.


  2. Thanks for the Comment KGB. I saw the movie with Natasha. couldn’t agree more. Makes us both not want to watch another season of Storm Chasers. Sean Casey- you are a whiny self promoting, self centered documentarian. You spent a decade making what discovery channel has done weekly for 5 seasons. Congrats at failing at life.


  3. Wow … haven’t seen the movie yet, and ain’t gonna after seeing this page. I just finished season 3 of Storm Chasers on Netflix and was starting to look for his movie. Thanks for saving me a bunch of time and money I could’ve wasted. I bet the tornados in Season 3 Episode 6 of Storm Chasers were cooler to see than what ended up in the film … I would’ve been showing up to the movie expecting to see some good, long footage of that almost standstill F4 tornado in that episode!


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