Review: ODD THOMAS (2013) | Casey's Movie Mania | Movie Reviews, Features & Others

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Review: ODD THOMAS (2013)

Anton Yelchin and Addison Timlin are amazing, but the movie itself fails to live up its supernatural quirkiness above mediocrity.

It's been a long time since we heard about Stephen Sommers, who last directed 2009's G.I. JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA. Now he's back with ODD THOMAS, at which he adapts the first of the popular Dean Koontz's books based on the titular character. If you are expecting the same mindless fun like Sommers did in the first two MUMMY franchise or G.I. JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA, you'll be surprised that his latest movie here feels like an incredibly step below of his career.

Anton Yelchin plays Odd Thomas, a skilled short-order cook working at a small diner called the Pico Mundo Grill. He also has special ability to see and communicate with the dead. Because of his gifted power, he often comes in handy to help out Chief Wyatt Porter (Willem Dafoe) and the police to solve murder cases. Then one day, Odd sees a man in the diner named Fungus Bob Robertson (Shuler Hensley) being surrounded by a large number of Bodachs, which are actually evil spirits that only appear whenever murder is about to take place. Together with his sexy girlfriend Stormy (Addison Timlin), they investigate about Fungus Bob Robertson and soon uncover an elaborate scheme that is about to turn their small town into chaos.
As the relentless and nerdy Odd Thomas, Anton Yelchin certainly fits the role well. He's really fun to watch for. He also pairs well with the sexy but wonderful Addison Timlin, who plays Odd's girlfriend.

The twist at the ending really had me in surprise and it's somewhat poignant.

As the director and screenwriter of the movie, Stephen Sommers tries hard to blend the quirky side of Sam Raimi with a dash of Peter Jackson's THE FRIGHTENERS (1996). However, he fails to hit most of the target. The other problem about his screenplay is the way he introduces Odd Thomas at the beginning of the movie. I don't mind if his origin is explained in a few short scenes, but it feels very rushed to get to the point. If you really want to get know more about Odd Thomas, you should read the book instead. Then thanks to the budgetary issue, the special effects looks cheap and amateurish (the Bodachs doesn't look scary at all). Finally, there's William Dafoe, who is simply wasted in his thankless role as Chief Wyatt Porter.

Given its premise, ODD THOMAS actually has potential to become a successful movie franchise. But Stephen Sommers proves to be inadequate directing this kind of movie. Strictly for the die-hard fans of the books.

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