This movie is about a character called Odd Thomas, who, as he states can see/communicate with (in a way, the dead cannot talk to him, only show him things) the dead. He tells us in the beginning, that he inherited this "gift" from his mother, but she was locked away because of it, when he was very young. So Odd decided to use his abilities to help the dead, and he has a friend in the police, Chief Wyatt Porter, who helps him keep his secret a secret.
After Odd introduces himself to us, a dead girl visits him, and he stops her killer, and chases him through the little town of Pico Mundo, and then hands him over to the police.
Then, the next day we see Odd working in a diner as a cook, because as he puts it, the responsibility of dealing with the dead and a high-profile job does not go well together. In the diner we meet his girlfriend, Stormy, who works at the mall, in an ice cream shop. Stormy and Odd are meant to be together, forever (it is mentioned often during the course of the story). So, Stormy comes to the diner to meet Odd, but then a weird looking guy comes in wearing a pink suit, and he is followed by weird looking creatures called bodachs.
Now a bodach is a creature who feeds on death, pain and suffering, and they like to follow a soon to be dead person or a mass murderer around, occasionally slipping into his/her skin, and controlling the body of the person. But they can only be seen by someone who can see the dead, and they hate it when someone knows about them. Odd had a friend who saw one, and they killed him, when he wanted to speak about them.
So in the diner we see these bodachs swarming around the people, including Stormy, but Odd tries to distract them from her, successfully for the time being. The intensity of the bodachs swarming prompts Odd to take a further look into what the pink suit guy, or in the movie referenced as fungus guy (because of his peculiar hairdo) is up to.
But Viola, a waitress in the same diner stops him, to tell him her dream. When she mentions the red and black shirts with bowling balls on it Odd realizes that he had a fairly odd dream the night before, faceless people in the same outfit screaming at him to save them. During this time, the fungus guy disappears and the bodachs leave with him.
So Odd goes to the mall to see Stormy (for she works there), and to spend the afternoon with her. Also, he tells us, that he has a so called psychic magnetism, by which when he loses someone he can find that person again just by lurking around. So he goes to the mall, and the fungus guy is there, buying ice cream. While fungus man does this, Odd talks to Stormy, and they agree to meet for dinner. Then Odd takes Stormy's moped and follows the fungus guy to his house.
When fungus man leaves the house, Odd sneaks in, and realizes that the name Stormy gave to the guy is spot-on. Everything is disgusting and there is a portal to hell, and Odd also finds a shrine for psychopaths and has to realize that fungus guy is an aspiring mass murderer who has two friends, and plans to do something big on the 15th of August.
After this Odd chrashes the chief's date night, where he meets one of the new officers. The chief asks this policeman to check out the fungus guy, whose real nae is Robert Robertson. The new policeman does that, but nothing comes up.
Odd then leaves the chief to meet with Stormy at the church to have a picnic, but the fungus guy (Fungus Bob) shows up. He thrashes the place but Odd and Stormy gets away and then they stop for food. There they meet with a friend of Odd's who gives him a steel heart. Meanwhile the police investigates the thrashed church.
Odd and Stormy visit the local bowling alley, where they see that the uniforms changed from green and gold to red and black with black bowling balls on it. Odd calls the chief and he sends an officer to the bowling alley. He comes accross kind of weird and crass. Then Odd and Stormy visit Viola the waitress. They talk about her dream, and they learn that there will be a lot of flashing lights, and carnival music, roaring crowd, gushing water and so many dead bodies and blood. Then the bodachs appear around Viola's daughters.
Then they drive around town, when Stormy starts to cry because she is afraid for him. They pull over, and then they hear the scream. A young woman gets thorn apart by dogs. Police arrives and investigates.
Odd takes Stormy home, and leaves her there, thinking that the chief sent a surveillance team to protect her. Then Odd goes home, and finds Fungus Bob dead in his bathtub. He is being framed, but he knows better, and hides the body in an abandoned prison. That means when they were attacked in the church, Bob was already dead, and was a poltergeist.
While Odd is getting rid of the body, the chief gets shot. When Odd arrives to his house, he sees the police and the ambulance swarming. Then he visits him in the hospital, where the chief's wife tells him that the steal heart he wore (a gift from Odd) protected him.
Then Odd tries to reason with Stormy to stay home, but she leaves for work. Odd goes to check out Fungus Bob's house. The portal to hell is gone, but he finds himself drawn to the fridge where he finds a lot of disgusting stuff, like cockroaches, fingers cut off from a hand, teeth pulled out of someone's jaws and a skull, hidden in an ice cream bucket. Then he meets the poltergeist of Fungus Bob. They fight, and the house gets blown up.
While he drives back to the town, he remembers an important clue, and goes back to take a look at Fungus Bob's body. He finds it, and remembers that he saw that before. It is a tattoo of POD, meaning Prince of Darkness. As it happens one of the police officers wearing this tattoo and Fungus Bob belong to a satanist cult. Also the bodachs were actively trying to throw him off scent. And the massacre is going to happen in the mall. And the the two new police officers the chief was working with are both in on it. They killed Fungus Bob and the young girl with the dogs.
So Odd goes to the mall, to stop the murder spree, and neutralises one of the policemen who took over the control room. He learnes that he and his partner were planning to get away with it by wearing their police uniform under their gear, posing as a unit responding to the call. Odd takes the knocked out policeman's gun.
Then Odd gets in to the shopping area, where one man with a skimask on his face starts shooting. The bodachs arrive just moments beforehand. The skimask guy starts shooting, and people cannot get away because the doors are locked. Odd shoots the guy. But it's not over. Turns out there is a truck full of explosives in the garage of the mall.
When Odd gets there, the policeman with the tattoo on his arm is walking away. But the shouting draws his attention, and shoots Odd, while he is driving the truck out of town.
Eventually he chrashes the truck into some remote concrete dam-system or the likes, and he survives but the policeman doesn't. Odd wakes up in the hospital with Stormy by his side.
They get to Stormy's place. He spends some time there, and then he has to realize that Stormy died in the shootout.
So that for once to listen to her, he leaves Pico Mundo and goes to Las Vegas because she wanted to go and live there, and get married.
Best part of story, including ending:
I liked it because it was interesting, but as I haven't read the book I cannot tell if it is a faithful adaptation or not. Anyway I liked the character of Fungus Bob. He has no speaking role, but his clothes, his movements, everything about him brings the name alive.
Best scene in story:
When Fungus Bob arrives to the church, and thrashes the place. There is a hint there that shows he is not from this world anymore. And the way he furiously walks toward the building. He lives up to his name.
Opinion about the main character:
I like Odd, because he handles his gift very well. Also I admire him for being so brave that he goes to investigate those places in the movie, but there is a big stupidity in him too. He saw the portal, how it looks when the bodachs arrive or leave, and yet, he sticks his hand into one? What did he expect? Catching one bare handed?