Friday, February 28, 2014
REVIEW: Odd Thomas
Anton Yelchin, Addison Timlin
NR (PG-13 material)
Febraury 28, 2014
1 hour 36 minutes
Back in July of last year, news spread around the inter webs that a movie called "Odd Thomas" would not see the light of day in a movie theater anytime soon. The reason for this was due to legal actions with the production company, and things among that nature. So to be perfectly honest right now, I first saw this movie back in August when it leaked onto the internet for the sole reason that I thought it wouldn't see the light of day until like 2016 or something. Stupid thinking on my part, as the film was actually announced for a theatrical/VOD release for this week. At least that gave me time to revisit the film and see if it holds up upon a second viewing, because I actually really enjoyed this upon first viewing. Low and behold, "Odd Thomas" held up really well, and overall it is still a fun and entertaining little movie that I really hope people will be able to find.
Odd Thomas lives up to his name, Odd. He was born with the ability to see ghosts and monsters that crave carnage only known as "Bodachs." In order to live a seemingly normal life, Odd works at the local diner as a fry cook, where he is beloved by all. With his ability to see the dead, who help him catch vicious murderers in the town, Odd helps the police out with catching these criminals, even though they see him as a weird person. Odd also has a loyal girlfriend named Stormy, who supports and understands Odd's paranormal abilities. When one Bodach shows up in Odd's town, it's easy to brush it off, as long as they don't know you can see them. But when hundreds of Bodachs start showing up, this tells Odd that carnage on a massive scale is about to ensue, and he is the only one who could stop it from happening.
I've always admired Anton Yelchin and I think he's one of the most promising young actors of this generation. It's great to see him getting a lead role like this, because he is simply perfect for it. He has a good sense of humor throughout, plus he makes a solid action hero in general. Think of "Charlie Bartlett" but with paranormal powers. Willem Dafoe pops up in here as a police captain who can only take Odd's word for the criminals that he helps to catch. While it's not Dafoe's best performance, he still has an enjoyable presence here in general. Then, we have Addison Timlin, who you might have seen in "That Awkward Moment," "Stand Up Guys," and most notably the Showtime TV series "Californication." Timlin plays Odd's beautiful, supportive, and awesome girlfriend Stormy, and I loved every single second she was on screen. It might have been because she's insanely beautiful, but I personally think that she was really good in the film in general. The rest of the cast is solid as well, but none are as prominent as the three mentioned here.
The man responsible for making this film happen is director/screenwriter Stephen Sommers. Notable for the popular "Mummy" franchise, as well as the underrated "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra," Sommers takes this story, adds some witty humor and some cool elements in general, and overall makes a really fun movie. The special effects aren't anything to go gaga over, but they are still pretty good for an independent movie like this. In a way, the film felt like an animated comic book coming to life, and I really liked that about it. This isn't the best book-to-movie adaptation one will see, due to some inconsistencies, flaws in the script, and some unintentionally laughable moments, but I still found a lot of enjoyment out of it, with its story being interesting, the cast being really solid, and the film overall feeling satisfying for those who watch it. I doubt this will appeal to everyone, but I could see this getting a cult-following considering the type of release it's getting. Plus, the film alludes to a potential sequel at the end, and I'd personally love to see that happen. "Odd Thomas" is an odd little fantasy flick, but that's exactly why I enjoyed it both times I saw it.