Odd Thomas (2013)

odd-thomas-movie-review-2013Director: Stephen Sommers

Genre: Thriller, Mystery

Runtime: 97 Minutes

Main Cast: Anton Yelchin, Addison Timlin, Willem Dafoe, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Nico Tortorella, Patton Oswalt, Melissa Ordway, Shuler Hensley

Plot: Odd has the ability to see dead people, a strange power he inherited from his Mother, a power he mostly keeps a secret with the exception of his girlfriend Stormy of the Chief of Police. He uses this gift to help the Chief solve murders – but one day brings a foreboding of something much bigger.

My Thoughts: What a strange, yet delightful little movie! I’m still making a dent in my ever-growing watch list, and I think Odd Thomas made the list thanks to one of my lovely Blogging buddies after the sad news of Anton Yelchin’s passing. This is definitely my favourite movie of his that I’ve seen so far. It feels low budget – but in a good way, and it’s a wild ride from start to finish.

Absolutely everything about it is quirky, I mean just look at that plot summary! Odd himself talks us through most of the story, explaining how he can see dead people, and what these strange, shadowy figures are that only a very select few can see (they’re called bodachs). If you’ve ever seen the TV show Pushing Daisies, it’s got the same kind of silly vibe, whilst maintaining a reasonably serious storyline. It’s such a hard thing to explain, but you’ll know what I mean if you’ve seen it.

Basically, these bodachs follow death – they feed upon it. So when Odd’s town becomes infested with them, it’s a sign that something awful is on the horizon, a mass murder. Teaming up with Stormy and the Chief, Odd works to solve the mystery of what’s about to unfold, and hopefully stop it before it can happen. It’s by no means a perfect movie but it’s so different and out there that I can’t help but love it!

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Best Bit: I love a good mystery, and whilst this one is satisfying, it was the ending that took me by surprise. Maybe I should have seen the warning signs, but I didn’t, and when it finally clicked what was happening, I was a big mess of emotions!

Worst Bit: The supernatural elements in this movie are so crazy that it requires Odd to narrate almost everything that happens, which I guess feels a little patronising at times. It isn’t a long movie though, so I can’t help but feel like a few extra opening scenes could have done some of that work instead.

Fun Trivia: Scenes that included Odd and Stormy’s origins were deleted from the film. One including young Stormy and her stepfather and another including young Odd and his mother. Odd’s mother put a gun to his head and is later taken away while cutting paper roses. DJ Shamus and most of Ozzy’s scenes were also deleted from the film.

My Rating: 3 and a half bowling shirts, an omen of terrible things to come…

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Review: The Cloverfield Paradox (2018)

the-cloverfield-paradox-review-2018The Superbowl isn’t a big deal over here in the UK, nor is it watchable at a decent time in the day thanks to the time zones, so I woke up on Monday morning to a lot of exciting news! A Han Solo trailer (I’m holding onto all hope it’s good), some other big movie announcements, and the crazy news that not only is the new Cloverfield movie ready, it’s released right now on Netflix! You’ve got to hand it to everyone responsible for keeping that under wraps so well in days like these.

I’ll admit I’m a little sad it’s not out in the cinema, but it’s such a breath of fresh air to watch a movie you’ve been anticipating for a long time without seeing a single trailer or knowing anything about it! I’d like to say I wish Star Wars Episode 9 could be released like that, but I’ll be scouring the internet for any news on that for the next (almost) 2 years!

So, this new addition to the Cloverfield movie universe is The Cloverfield Paradox, and it’s a story set in space following an international crew aboard a space station who accidentally smash into an alternate dimension whilst using a particle accelerator to try and solve Earth’s energy crisis. Bit different to a creepy guy in a bunker, right?

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What I love about this discovery is how much it opens up possibilities in the Cloverfield universe. There was no energy crisis mentioned in the previous movies – that’s because those movies happened in different dimensions! The team can literally do whatever they like now, and it sounds like they are as the next instalment is set during World War II.

Sadly, one only needs to Google the name of this movie to discover that the internet hates it. Sigh. I can understand their points, the plot is a bit silly in places but for me that’s what makes it so much fun. If I’m watching Sci-Fi I don’t always want it to be ridiculously hard to understand like Interstellar, or terrifying like Alien. Sometimes I just want to be entertained! Besides, as silly as it is I still think it’s better quality than last year’s Life and the previous year’s Passengers.

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I found the crew to be incredibly likeable, and I felt a real connection to Gugu Mbatha-Raw’s character Hamilton. She’s the star here and she’s presented with such a horrible situation that I won’t go into for spoilerific reasons. Perhaps many will disagree but I thought the story took a lot of twists that were unexpected, and I really didn’t have a clue how it would end until the credits themselves. How cool would that final moment have been on the big screen though?!

I realise I’m completely in the majority here on enjoying The Cloverfield Paradox but that’s okay with me. I give it 4 out of 5 severed arms!

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