A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Extra Ordinary is a comedy with horror elements like ghosts and satanic rituals. Violence includes some blood and gore, a body torn in half (the halves are connected by intestines), a goat exploding, a character's throat being sliced, someone getting hit by a bus, a severed finger, a dead magpie, burning with a cigarette, fighting, punching, slamming, and choking. Ghosts have tantrums, characters die off-screen, and there are other violent incidents/descriptions. Language includes frequent uses of "f--k," "s--t," "bitch," "ass," and more. There's a brief sex scene (no nudity), some graphic sex-related talk and gestures, and a wooden staff with a detailed, carved phallus at the top. Characters, including a teen, smoke, and there's a brief drug reference. The movie is broad and silly, but it maintains a good balance of laughs and lovable characters and is recommended for mature viewers. Will Forte co-stars.
What's the story?
In EXTRA ORDINARY, one-hit wonder pop star Christian Winter (Will Forte) tries to perform a satanic ritual involving the sacrifice of a virgin to get his career back on track. Meanwhile, Rose Dooley (Maeve Higgins) is a driving instructor who has certain paranormal talents but refuses to use them, since she's convinced that they caused her father's death. And Martin Martin (Barry Ward) is being haunted by the pushy, pesky ghost of his ex-wife, and his teen daughter, Sarah (Emma Coleman), gives him an ultimatum: Either get rid of the ghost, or she's leaving. Martin goes to Rose, pretending to need driving lessons, which fails. But when Sarah falls under an evil spell and starts floating, Rose agrees to take the case. Before Rose and Martin can rescue Sarah and stop Christian, they must collect the ectoplasm of seven ghosts ...
Is it any good?
This broad, silly Irish comedy doesn't break any new ground, but the characters are nonetheless lovable and hilarious, and it's a delightful distraction. Written and directed by Mike Ahern and Enda Loughman, Extra Ordinary at least manages to combine horror and comedy without being about zombies, and its take on the supernatural is hilariously deadpan and matter-of-fact. (The opening credits comically claim that it was "based on a true story.") Most hauntings, a supernatural expert tells us, are so small that no one even notices -- thus we see a toaster waving its cord as Rose passes by, or a dead wife reminding her surviving husband to pay the car tax.
While Extra Ordinary does include large-scale visual effects and has some gore, the focus is on the fun characters. It uses them to find a humorous balance between over-the-top and subtle. Saturday Night Live veteran Forte steals his scenes as the villain, who's totally, coolly resigned to using satanic means to restore his career -- it's just that his wife (the very funny Claudia O'Doherty) manages to get in the way through carelessness. But Higgins is the real find here. She quickly wins us over, just as easily as Rose wins over Martin Martin. Extra Ordinary may feel a little familiar, but it's also skillfully made, and it's a riot.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about Extra Ordinary's horror elements and violence. How did they affect you? Were they shocking? Funny? How did the movie achieve this effect?
How is sex portrayed? What values are imparted?
Given that the movie is about ghosts and other supernatural phenomena, is it scary? What's normally scary about ghosts?
How important is teamwork to the movie?
- In theaters: March 6, 2020
- On DVD or streaming: June 2, 2020
- Cast: Maeve Higgins, Barry Ward, Will Forte
- Directors: Enda Loughman, Mike Ahern
- Studio: Good Deed Entertainment
- Genre: Comedy
- Topics: Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- Run time: 94 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: language, sexual content and some horror violence
- Last updated: June 2, 2020
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