It's not easy for a fantasy franchise to nimbly establish an elaborate back story, but "Odd Thomas" pulls it off with breezy matter-of-factness in its opening scenes. The titular character, who goes by "Odd" (
With his elfin looks, aw-shucks demeanor and propensity for righteous brawling, Odd looks and acts like a comic-book avenger. Early on, he bangs up a murderer he chances upon — a bloody-nosed citizen's arrest that the police chief (
Though he'd love to lose himself in playful banter with his sassy soul mate (
In adapting Dean Koontz's series, Sommers nails the hero but bungles the world-building. Odd predicts mythological violence, but the climactic wreckage we see on screen is too real for what should play out as weightless entertainment. The tonal confusion persists through a mawkish epilogue that optimistically sets up a sequel, but by then it's too late: We have no reason to return to this world.
"Odd Thomas." No MPAA rating. Running time: 1 hour, 36 minutes. At Laemmle's Noho 7, North Hollywood. Also on VOD.