Evolution

"Weak"

Evolution Review


Here's my candidate for most creative casting of 2001....

In Evolution, you get David Duchovny, (former) star of TV's The X-Files who has failed miserably to cross over to any kind of success in film. Julianne Moore, former independent darling before she started making movies like The Lost World and Hannibal. Orlando Jones, 7-Up pitchman and easily typecast goofball. And Seann William Scott, whose most visible role was as a stoner in Dude, Where's My Car?

Before we start talking about creating a new Oscar category, let's consider the rickety vehicle these clowns are forced to try and jump-start. Duchovny and Jones play science teacher colleagues at an Arizona community college and Scott an earnest yet barely capable aspiring fireman; the three come together when a meteor (sometimes referred to as an asteroid in the movie) touches down in the desert, carrying with it a genetic payload that soon starts to wreak havoc on the locals.

Moore's CDC official comes to the rescue -- along with the military -- and soon enough the alien infestation has ultra-rapidly evolved into a race of fierce monsters with only one fatal flaw: They can't breathe oxygen.... But they're learning, and fast.

Director Ivan Reitman puts our heroes through their paces, using his timeworn tradition of blending action, sci-fi, and comedy -- or at least that's the idea. Sadly, virtually every plot point of Evolution is ripped off, unapologetically, from Ghostbusters, Reitman's 1984 film that had a gang of losers fighting off the supernatural instead of the extraterrestrial.

Oh, and Ghostbusters was, like, funny.

Reitman, who hasn't made a legitimately good film since 1993's Dave, is decidedly off his game here. The special effects come down to hit and miss CGI graphics mixed in with hastily constructed miniatures. It's all just laziness: While a Jurassic Park dinosaur needs to look awfully real to work on the big screen, Reitman figures he can get away with just about anything for these alien dudes. As a result, even the best of the creatures are decidedly Jim Henson-esque.

The plot, as mentioned, is a wholesale ripoff of Ghostbusters (though it does stir in some of the worst scientific reasoning ever made since Ghostbusters 2 implicated "negative feelings" for its pink ooze of evil). Will the government meddle and make things worse? Will someone get "slimed" (or thereabouts)? Will there be a shootout in a public place? And will our heroes be forced to shoot stuff out of a tube in order to defeat a creature that meets an end in such a way that should have Mister Stay-Puft dialing his lawyers for copyright infringement? Do you really need answers to these?

Our poor actors are reduced to delivering some of the same old one-liners and some chuckle-worthy new ones, but with Evolution Reitman seems to have forgotten what made Ghostbusters such a memorable film -- and indeed, a true piece of Americana. It was a film with heroes that you wanted to see win, it was truly funny, it was eminently quotable ("We came, we saw, we kicked its ass!"), and it had class. Even the villains were charming -- I mean, the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man has way more charisma than a giant, pink, alien blob.

But enough about Evolution the movie. Let's talk about the moron who took 10 minutes to figure out how to focus the projector at the start of the film. Now that's evolution for ya.

Is it just me, or do Duchovny, Jones, and Scott look like the fake ones here?



Evolution

Facts and Figures

Run time: 101 mins

In Theaters: Friday 8th June 2001

Box Office USA: $37.6M

Box Office Worldwide: $98.4M

Budget: $80M

Distributed by: Dreamworks Pictures

Production compaines: Montecito Picture Company, The, DreamWorks Pictures, Columbia Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 43%
Fresh: 57 Rotten: 77

IMDB: 6.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Dr. Ira Kane, as Dr. Allison Reed, CDC, as Prof. Harry Phineas Block, as Wayne Grey, as General Russell Woodman, as Governor Lewis, as Colonel Flemming, Andrew Bowen as Road Worker, as Denise, as Nadine, Stephanie Hodge as Jill Mason

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Swallows and Amazons Movie Review

Swallows and Amazons Movie Review

After a number of films, TV series and stage adaptations, Arthur Ransome's beloved 1930 novel...

David Brent: Life on the Road Movie Review

David Brent: Life on the Road Movie Review

The original BBC sitcom The Office ran for 14 episodes from 2001 to 2003, and...

The Childhood of a Leader Movie Review

The Childhood of a Leader Movie Review

Bold and intelligent, this dark drama is a challenging portrait of the making of an...

Pete's Dragon Movie Review

Pete's Dragon Movie Review

This hugely enjoyable adventure is a loose remake of the 1977 Disney hit that blended...

The Shallows Movie Review

The Shallows Movie Review

With a simple premise and plenty of visual style, Spanish filmmaker Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown) takes...

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Movie Review

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Movie Review

Watching this gross-out comedy, it's clear that the gifted cast and crew had a great...

Nerve Movie Review

Nerve Movie Review

With a premise that feels almost eerily current, this stylish thriller revolves around a phone...

Advertisement
The Carer Movie Review

The Carer Movie Review

Brian Cox gets the role of a lifetime in this warm comedy about living life...

Born to Be Blue Movie Review

Born to Be Blue Movie Review

Writer-director Robert Budreau takes a stylised approach to this biopic of the legendary jazz artist...

Jason Bourne Movie Review

Jason Bourne Movie Review

It's been nine years since Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass collaborated on The Bourne Ultimatum,...

The Commune [Kollektivet] Movie Review

The Commune [Kollektivet] Movie Review

Veteran Danish filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg (Festen, The Hunt) returns to a smaller homegrown story after...

The BFG Movie Review

The BFG Movie Review

For his adaptation of the Roald Dahl classic, Steven Spielberg reunited with screenwriter Melissa Mathison,...

Finding Dory Movie Review

Finding Dory Movie Review

It's been 13 years since the release of the Disney/Pixar hit Finding Nemo, and filmmaker...

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

This is where the Star Trek franchise officially shifts from thoughtful drama into thunderous action....

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.