Odd Thomas Movie Poster Image

Odd Thomas

Nightmarish imagery, violence abounds in dark-humored tale.
  • Rated: NR
  • Genre: Horror
  • Release Year: 2014
  • Running Time: 96 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

As a dark-humored horror story, there isn't much in the way of positive messages.

Positive role models

The characters are too over-the-top and cartoonish to be considered positive role models.

Violence

Frequent violence. Characters armed with machine guns attempt to carry out a mass murder in a mall. During this massacre, a man is shot at point-blank range. A man accidentally shoots two dogs with a shotgun. A woman pulls a knife on someone, acts crazy, and shrieks. A police chief is shot at point-blank range. Nightmarish imagery throughout. A head-on collision is shown between a semi and a car on a two-lane road. The refrigerator of a suspected killer has severed fingers crawling with cockroaches. A roach crawls out of the mouth of a decomposing cadaver. Characters get into fistfights and throw each other around. A man elbows his girlfriend in the face.

Sex

One character tells another to "get yourself some."

Language

Occasional profanity: "s--t," "ass," "bulls--t," "a--hole."

Consumerism

Cigarette brands mentioned.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Characters drink beer and wine on occasion but do not act intoxicated. While rooting around a suspected killer's ashtray, the main character remarks on how there are "Winstons, Camels, and Marlboros" in the ashtray.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Odd Thomas is a 2013 movie based on the Dean Koontz series of books. Nightmarish imagery, horror-movie violence, and moments of gore abound in this one. Also, there is an attempted mass murder in a shopping mall perpetrated by machine-gun-wielding characters. This movie also attempts to mine dark humor from images, as with that of a dead man with a severed arm using his severed arm to scratch his crotch, as well as well-timed flatulence from a decomposing cadaver that is covered in cockroaches. Although fans of the book series should appreciate the basic story of the titular character's clairvoyance used to stop the evils and horrors of this world, for those who haven't read the books, the gratuitous violence, bombastic production values, and stale humor don't make this the best way to start checking out Koontz's series.

What's the story?

ODD THOMAS (Anton Yelchin) works as a short-order cook in the town of Pico Mundo, Calif., but it's a facade for his true calling: He's a clairvoyant who sees and prevents evil from happening to those around him. Thomas helps Police Chief Porter (Willem Dafoe) through his gift of seeing Bodachs -- clear demonic predators who always appear and portend horrible deaths. When Odd Thomas sees dozens of Bodachs everywhere he looks, he knows the town is on the verge of something awful. This is when he first sees the mysterious stranger Bob Robertson, a man whom Odd Thomas learns is a Satanist with a fascination with serial killers. It's up to Odd Thomas -- with the help of his girlfriend Stormy and Police Chief Porter -- to find out what Robertson's evil plan is, whom he's planning it with, and how they can be stopped before the local mall becomes a bloodbath of mass murder.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

Although fans of the series of Odd Thomas novels written by Dean Koontz might enjoy this adaptation, those unfamiliar with the series will probably have a tough time with it. This movie is filled with way too much gratuitous violence, indulgent nightmarish imagery, and flat "dark" humor to be anything special. The dialogue is incredibly self-satisfied in its attempts at cleverness and wit, and there's such an air of obnoxious bombast in every scene, it's difficult to enjoy what could have been an interesting premise had the production been less heavy-handed.

Though it's certainly not the most graphic horror movie out there, the moments of gore seem to have no point except to keep audiences temporarily entertained in the cheapest of ways. For those looking to get into the story and adventures of Odd Thomas, the best bet is to start with the books; this movie seems best for die-hard fans only.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about horror-movie violence and imagery. Did the violence in this movie seem appropriate to the overall story, or did it seem gratuitous? Why, or why not?

  • What challenges do you see in adapting a popular book series into a movie?

  • How does this movie compare with other dark-humored horror movies?

Movie details

DVD/Streaming release date:March 25, 2014
Cast:Anton Yelchin, Willem Dafoe, Addison Timlin
Director:Stephen Sommers
Studio:Image Entertainment
Genre:Horror
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Book characters, Misfits and underdogs, Monsters, ghosts, and vampires
Run time:96 minutes
MPAA rating:NR

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written byHightech Redneck July 28, 2014

Fun horror-comedy.

NOTE: I HAVE NOT READ THE BOOKS: Lots of action and humor. The story is good. The acting is well done. Awesome CGI! The main character sees dead people and has some other strange powers. At one point in this movie Odd (the main character) finds a portal to Hell,(but doesn't go in it so there's no demonic stuff in this movie.). This movie has some violence and creepiness. A tiny bit of sexual content, but nothing strong. This movie does have some uses of sh*t. Overall, a fun movie that I would definitely recommend to teens.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Parent of a 15 year old Written byedythmayor5 July 3, 2016

Cheesy but Fine for kids!

There is a little violence that is hinted throughout the movie, but no gory scenes that leave nightmares. There is one kissing scene that is brief, and a few swear words, but nothing that most pg-13 movies don't contain. I would say that is a well thought out plot, although some scenes are cheesy, which lightens the mood. I would say that this movie has an interesting story line, and may be a bit much for younger viewers, but the older ones will find this to be entertaining while not being overwhelmingly violent, or sexual.
Parent Written byKatherine G. October 24, 2016

A surprising delight.

I am also perplexed as to the 18+ review for the movie. I think the story is really good, and even though there is some darkness in it, the characters (especially Odd and Stormy) treat it sincerely but lightly. They are quirky, and it lightens the feel of the movie to me. And the message of accepting who you are, and doing the best you can with it is a positive message to me.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models