Odd Job (1978) - Rotten Tomatoes

Odd Job (1978)

Odd Job

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Movie Info

In this dark British comedy, a despondent businessman (Graham Chapman) decides to end it all after his wife leaves him. Unfortunately, he lacks the courage to do it to himself and so hires a professional assassin, telling him to do the deed no matter what. A short time passes and things look considerably brighter for the businessman who suddenly decides he wants to live. Unfortunately, nothing he says can convince his would be killer to stop his pursuit, and comic mayhem ensues. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovimore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Comedy
Directed By:
Runtime:

Cast

Graham Chapman
as Arthur Harris
David Jason
as Odd Job Man
Diana Quick
as Fiona Harris
Simon Williams
as Tony Sloane
Edward Hardwicke
as Inspector Black
Bill Paterson
as Sgt. Mull
Joe Melia
as Headwaiter
George Innes
as Caretaker
Dave Atkins
as Milkman
James Bree
as Mr. Kemp
Zulema Dene
as Mrs. Kemp
Nick Edmett
as Police Constable
David Hatton
as Old Man
John Judd
as Police Driver
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Critic Reviews for Odd Job

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Audience Reviews for Odd Job

½

Basically the answer to a trivia question ("What did Graham Chapman do between 'Holy Grail' and 'Life of Brian'?"), "The Odd Job" is a slight black comedy that lacks the surreal absurdity and heady academia to match Monty Python's genius. But it's essential viewing for fans, all the same.

Arthur Harris (Chapman) decides he can't go on after his bored wife (Diana Quick) leaves him, but is too cowardly to kill himself. A quirky fool (David Jason) seeking "odd jobs" knocks on the door at just the right moment, and Arthur hires him as a stalker/assassin. However, the wife soon returns and poor Arthur can't call off the pact. Thus begins a farce in which he scrambles to dodge a series of inept murder schemes. It's a one-joke plot, but the action turns dark enough to avoid being a Wile E. Coyote and Roadrunner cartoon. Meanwhile, Bill Paterson (who also appeared in Michael Palin's "A Private Function" and Terry Gilliam's "The Adventures of Baron Munchausen") shows up as a detective in his film debut, and slinky Carolyn Seymour accepts a throwaway role that requires little beyond gratuitous nudity.

Director Peter Medak ("The Ruling Class," "A Day in the Death of Joe Egg") is no stranger to perversity, but this film is not his best work. But just imagine if the hit man had been played by the original casting choice: the Who's Keith Moon.

Eric Broome
Eric Broome

Super Reviewer

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