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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

NOTHING OFF ABOUT 'ODD'

When I heard that there were plans to make a movie of Dean Koontz' unique character 'Odd Thomas', I admit to being a wee bit leery. After all, Hollywood seems to have a record of taking books loved by their readers and then making them into movies that everyone hates. 
 
Odd Thomas (2013) PosterSo as I sat down to watch the DVD of Odd Thomas, I was a little anxious.  It was reassuring to see the title role played by a likeable actor familiar to those who have seen the new Star Trek franchise films.  It was calming to see the director, Stephen Sommers, was the one responsible for The Mummy and The Mummy Returns. Sommers was also responsible for the screenplay based on the book.
 
In a California desert town, a short-order cook with clairvoyant abilities encounters a mysterious man with a link to dark, threatening forces.
  
                 
 
The unique story of a young fry cook with a unique talent caught the viewer right away.  The charming, witty and philosophical young man with his basic goodness and sense of duty is appealing. Then, the strangeness begins...
 
There were shivers, shakes, action sequences, surprises and a strangely believable reality to the entire story that kept you captivated.  The cast were all solid actors who brought great skill to their parts and solid support for the story crafted by Koontz. Anton Yelchin, Addison Timlin, Leonar Varela, William Defeoe. and others, all added greatly to the success of the film.
 
I was surprised how true to the book the movie was.  Not just slavish word-for-word matching but, more importantly, true to understanding who Odd Thomas is and what he can mean in the strange world he populates.  An awareness that his philosophical insights can apply in a very real world far away from his fictional desert community.
 
I think this may be the best translation of a bestselling and popular book into a movie format I have ever seen. I look forward, with hope, to other of the Koontz corpus being translated into film with equal skill and understanding.
 
 
Trailer here.
 
Marilyn A. Hudson, Paranormal Librarian
 

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