YMMV / Twister

  • Awesome Music: The main licensed track for the film is Van Halen's "Humans Being", which is basically an excuse for epically long Eddie Van Halen guitar solos. Van Halen also composed the instrumental played in the credits, "Respect The Wind", which basically IS an epically long Eddie Van Halen guitar solo.
    • Harsher in Hindsight: Shame that very song was what eventually made Sammy Haggar quit the band after Eddie rewrote his lyrics for being "too corny".
  • Critical Research Failure: Jo's father describes the approaching tornado as possibly an F5 in 1969, when the Fujita scale wasn't established until 1972. F-scale ratings are only determined after the fact by looking at the damage the tornado caused, not while it's actually occurring.
  • Designated Hero: Bill. He gets engaged to a woman while he's still married, drags her along into a highly dangerous situation to find his current wife, assaults Jonas in front of news reporters, then finally upsets his fiancee enough for her to dump him after she hears him professing his feelings for Jo.
  • Designated Villain: Other than being a Jerkass, Jonas doesn't do a thing that's villainous, but is seen as a sell-out for abandoning the team for corporate sponsors. He also used Bill's designs to build his own weather machine based on the team's, but then, Jo did the same thing after Bill had left, so...
  • Foe Yay: Could Jonas and Bill ease their tension with a roll in the hay?
  • Follow the Leader: Spawned an entire sub-genre of disaster movies, the latest being 2014's Into the Storm.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: in May 2010, some of the shooting locations in Oklahoma got hit by tornadoes.
    • Not to mention the events of the May 3rd, 1999 tornado outbreak three years later bore quite a few similarities, including a record-breaking F5 to cap it off.
    • The events of the Moore Tornado on the 20th of May 2013 also bear an uncomfortable resemblance to the film.
    • Then came 31 May 2013, the first ever deaths of storm chasers, in El Reno, Oklahoma (not far away from Moore). One of them, Tim Samaras, had designed a device similar to Dorothy to measure atmospheric conditions inside a tornado.
    • Despite the fact that Dorothy was based off a real NOAA experiment (which was sadly unsuccessful), in 1996 charging directly at a Tornado to put something in its way was exactly what real storm chasers did not do (they would get as close as they could, but generally speaking they were still several miles away, especially in the case of an F4 or F5 Tornado). Fast forward to the 2010's and now storm chasers are more or less emulating the characters in the film in terms of technique, including building armored cars to drive right into the Tornado itself!
  • Memetic Mutation
    • "The Suck Zone".
    • "We've got cows!"
  • Narm:
    • Jo's explanation of why she's so terrified of tornadoes. Trauma is one thing, but the way she says it makes it sound as though she doesn't think she's a meteorologist chasing storms so much as a profiler chasing UnSubs.
    Jo: You've never seen it! You’ve never seen it miss this house, and miss that house, and come after you!
    The Nostalgia Critic: Yes, apparently a factually-bound scientist is convinced that tornadoes are, in fact, serial killers.
    • The way the whole team overreacts with dumbstruck horror when Melissa asks whether there's an F-5 category for tornadoes, as if she'd just accidentally summoned the Devil himself to the breakfast table. F-5 tornadoes are something every meteorologist is familiar with. In hindsight, they were probably thinking of Jo's experience as child, but it's so awkwardly written and acted it still comes off as silly.
  • Nightmare Fuel: The opening scene when Jo's father is killed by a tornado, from the perspective of a little girl learning how helpless she is before nature.
    • The scene at the drive-thru theater is made of this. Of all the scenes in this movie, it perfectly captures the terror one feels being caught in a tornado. And it's at night.
    • For added measure, the tornado hits during a screening of The Shining. Narmy as it may be, the fact that the screen rips away just as it stops at the "Here's Johnny!" scene has somehow succeeded in making that moment even more unnerving.
    • The entire movie. Every time a tornado strikes, it's a reminder of the awesome destructive power of nature, and how we are helpless to stop it even as it levels everything in its path.
  • The Scrappy: Dusty and the rest of the chasers. Bill and Melissa to an extent, for how much of the movie their arguments take up before they eventually get back together.
  • Snark Bait: Some critics (Roger Ebert among them) had a little too much fun riffing on the film's coinage of the term "suck zone" (the writing on this movie also won it the one-time "Worst Written Film Grossing Over $100 Million" Razzie, though given the fact that the other four nominees had actually received good reviews at the time, it effectively was Twister's to lose).
  • Special Effect Failure: Most of the film's special effects were incredibly advanced and are still amazing to look at. However, the CGI cows just don't hold up these days, especially on the small screen.
    • The scene of the truck exploding was pretty lousy even for its time.
    • The sound the tornado makes is rather unrealistic as well, due to it being a very slowed-down camel grunt.
      • Survivors and witnesses of tornadoes have described a plethora of various sounds made by them: a gigantic overloaded washing machine, a thousand screaming pigs, hundred of lions roaring at once, the world's largest jet engine, etc. The sound effects team ended up using over four hundred different sounds for the six tornadoes, and all of them are used for the F5 tornado.
    • In the shot where they suddenly stop and make a detour while chasing a tornado, you can see Jonas' convoy pass them, then switch camera angles and you see Jonas' convoy pass them again, and another camera angle switch and see Jonas' convoy pass them yet again!
      • It's a fleet where all the vans are identical, so definitely YMMV.
      • And in the cow scene, you can see traffic going the opposite way in the rear window of the Dodge Ram. In another blink-and-you-miss-it shot, you can see a Texas highway sign, even though they're supposed to be in Oklahoma.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: Despite what's listed in the Special Effects Failure trope, the film still features some impressive special effects.
  • What an Idiot: The father in the opening scene. The winds are coming close to ripping the door off the storm cellar so instead of going with his wife and child to the obvious safety in the back of the underground storm cellar he tries to hold the door back, thus getting ripped away to his death and setting up Jo's backstory.
  • The Woobie: Melissa. She gets dragged into tornado hunting with her fiance, his wife who he planned to divorce, and his old team. And to top it all off, she hears Bill on the radio professing his feelings for Jo.
    • In a non-human example, Bill's prized red Dodge takes a lot of abuse throughout their attempts to deploy Dorothy, before it is ultimately sacrificed to ensure the deployment of the last pack into the funnel of the approaching F5.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: Cary Elwes as the bad guy, for some. Westley and Robin Hood is the human villain? He had been The Rival a couple times in Days of Thunder and Hot Shots!, and for those that have seen Liar Liar, Saw or Ella Enchanted, it kind of makes sense, but at the time, this was way off type for Elwes.