Otis Review

Movie: Otis
By: Gal Fleegman
Date: April 20, 2011

We're All Savages

In safe suburban neighborhoods, one doesn't have to constantly worry about what (or whom) may be lurking throughout the streets, just beyond their very own door. We know wackos exist, but not in our own private worlds. However, when that filth finds its way onto your doorstep and defiles somebody close to you, the emotions evoked can be quite over-whelming.

A Date To End All Dates

An awkward pizza delivery man named Otis (Bostin Christopher) is delivering more than pizza in this straight-to-DVD black horror comedy directed by Tony Krantz. He’s taking a smokin’ hot blonde named Kim to the prom, and he’s pulling out all the stops. It’s just unfortunate for him that his date isn’t exactly what one would call “willing”.

While working his shift Otis meets Riley Lawson (Ashley Johnson), an attractive high-schooler sweet enough to give a guy a toothache. She’s everything a guy like Otis could want in a girl: young, beautiful, and blonde. Otis likes blondes, and if there’s one thing our friend is good at, it’s getting what he wants…no matter what that entails. The means through which the title-character goes in order to achieve his pretty, new playmate is ballsy and a bit ludicrous to say the least, but sadly for a lot of people, is a regular and common occurrence.


Family Matters

After Riley’s parents (Daniel Stern and Illeana Douglas) become suspicious when she doesn’t return home from school, they contact the police and are left with no choice but to sit back and wait, stuck only with the help of perverted and difficult FBI detective Agent Hotchkiss (Jere Burns). With time dwindling, and a moronic douche of a detective calling all the shots, it isn’t long before the Lawsons start worrying that they may be going about everything the wrong way. One thing’s for sure, they’re not about to roll over and let Agent Hotchkiss muck everything up. Their daughter’s life is on the line, and the Lawsons don’t take kindly to pigs putting hands on their sweet, little angel.


Extra Cheese, Please

Young Riley (or “Kim” as dubbed by Otis) can only do her best to “play – play along” with Otis’ sick game, but who knows what twisted move he has planned next in that sadistic melon of his. And is playing along really the best idea, or just the express-lane to an early grave? The characters of Otis and Riley share a very interesting dynamic in this film. You can feel Riley’s fear and discomfort with every interaction between the two, and you can’t help but laugh while watching Otis’ pathetic attempts at flirting and smooth-talking. Of course the film does have a few minor flaws. It often projects a made-for-TV vibe, which is both charming and annoying. The music and sounds sometimes over-power the dialogue, but the soundtrack is so much fun it’s fairly forgivable, with songs from Talking Heads, Blue Oyster Cult, A Flock of Seagulls, and The B-52’s to name a few. At times the movie does seem to drag, but the outcome of the entire spectacle more than makes up for it. Flaws aside, it does a great job at diverting your attention away from those less-than-desirable attributes. Bostin Christopher, who had a small role as a comic store clerk in M. Night Shyamalan’s Unbreakable, has an uneasy demeanor about him, bringing a realness to Otis that only an unseasoned actor could deliver. The large sociopath is a blast to watch. Stern and Douglas are highly entertaining as usual, and campiness is in full effect, sometimes saturating the dialogue and causing the movie to walk the line between B-movie and independent film. It maintains its balance, however, with scenes and dialogue rich in intelligence, emotion, and depth. Kevin Pollak makes a memorable appearance as Otis’ brother, and Jere leaves you laughing and shaking your head at his unprofessional remarks and actions, causing you to question whether or not you can take him seriously as a detective throughout the entire flick.


"Suburban America Gone Haywire"

Otis may have flown under the radar, but this movie is a wonderfully amusing take on the actions of a sick monster, and the rash decisions that humans make while dealing with such a situation. The revenge bit has been done before, but keep in mind that this is a dark comedy after all, so try not to think Last House On The Left or I Spit On Your Grave. There is brutality towards women in small doses, along with some torture, however, if it’s gore you’re after, this isn’t the movie for you. If you want to see a bad situation get worse, and laugh along the way, then I recommend you give this bad boy a good watchin’…and don’t deny yourself the pleasure of checking out the alternate ending! It’s a gem!







Tony Krantz






Daniel Stern, Illeana Douglas, Ashley Johnson, Bostin Christopher,