Who ya gonna call? Rose the driving instructor apparently.
“Extra Ordinary,” directed by Mike Ahern and Enda Loughman, follows a driving instructor named Rose who is uncomfortable using her supernatural “talents” after she mistakenly kills someone close to her. After a man named Martin Martin reaches out to her for help, Rose reluctantly uses her supernatural abilities to help Martin free his daughter from a satanic spell. The film stars Maeve Higgins, Barry Ward and Will Forte.
The cast does a fine job working with the material it is given, but jokes often fall flat and line delivery feels forced. Ward’s Martin has the strongest performance of the bunch, as he assumes different personalities as he is possessed by spirits. His acting is consistent, and he definitely sells the portrayal of his character. Forte’s Christian Winter is also another standout. His performance as a satanist/failed musician lends itself to a lot of hilarious scenes. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for most of the rest of the cast, whose performances are not captiviating enough.
The story is certainly unique but has some trouble finding its footing. The audience isn’t introduced to the main issue or “quest” until well into the first act. This limits the amount of screentime the rest of the story gets, as so much of the running time has been eaten up by an elongated introduction of the characters. There are several VHS style intercuts that help add a retro charm to the story, but at times, they can feel a bit out of place. The comedic gags within the film, including a possessed whirlpool, are cute but sometimes work against the more darker elements of the film.
The most redeeming part of the film is its killer final act. The insane final battle that commences is full of laughs, bloodshed and an intimidating “eater of souls.” The film also pays homage to a couple of horror classics such as “The Exorcist” and “The Evil Dead.” The production design and locations are also quite impressive, the most notable examples being an eerie castle and a graveyard lit by the red light of a blood moon.
Despite an impressive final act, “Extra Ordinary” is a film that doesn’t fully reach its potential. There are a few clever jokes and comedic performances, but the overall scope of the film just isn’t effective enough.