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Evolution (DVD)

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

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      11.01.2011 12:54
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      Worth a watch, but dont reserve all your brain power for it

      In a nut shell: Evolution depicts two geologists, who investigate a metior which has crashed into the desert, which has signs of alien life on it. It turns out that their evolution is accelerated and the army steps in to try and destroy all of the new aliens which are roaming the city. It just so happens (films tend to have a lot of coincidences) that Mulder / Duchovny (Ira Kane in the film) is a disgraced army scientist, and this is his chance to proove them wrong. I wont ruin the ending for you by telling you he does. I think the picture on the front of the dvd (the smiley face with 3 eyes rather than the picture at the top) tells you that this is more aimed at kids. But i still enojyed it. It has a joke with a few aspects and makes light of everything, meaning that if your in the mood its a good film to watch. Not a Friday night film to watch with friends, but maybe one to have on in the background when your watching something else, or a hangover film, as it doesnt use too much brain power to watch. If you have it, or can borrow it, watch it, but not one to go and search for.

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        18.04.2010 12:45
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        Alien creatures evolve at an alarming rate!

        Coming from the director of Ghostbusters, you can easily assume this is going to be a fun film to watch! The film. After a meteorite crash lands to earth, two college scientists, Ira and Harry (Duchovny and Jones) end up taking a school trip to the crash site as part of the childrens school project, but after realsing there are single-celled alien life forms inside the meteorite, Ira and Harry believe they have found something big that will give them wealth and scientific recognition. During their attempt to keep the discovery for themselves the two scientists end up being taken out of the loop by the government and scientist Allison (Julianne Moore). It's only when things begin to go crazy as the alien life forms start evolving unbelievably quickly that Ira, Harry and Allison have to team up in order to try and figure out whats going on and how to stop it from consuming everyone and everything. Throw in Sean William-Scott as an uninvited comedy element to the whole story and things get stranger by the minute. My opinion. This film had me laughing constantly and went on to make me wish that David Duchovny had gone on to make more like it. Being a fan of the x-files I was looking forward to seeing Duchovny do something with a spooky feel to it but I certainly didn't expect him to be as funny as he was. The four main characters, David Duchovny, Julianne Moor, Sean William-Scott and Orlando Jones were amazing in their roles, each one of them being as funny as the other in their own way. I would even say that they were so good you don't even acknoledge the fact that Dan Ackroyd, a master of film humour, was in the film. Aside from the the humour, the special effects involved were quite surprising, better than I thought they would be for a comedy. The creatures (and there are a lot) are brilliant, and their CGI is done to a really high standard. The story itself is actually quite well thought out and a lot of thought has gone into the science of the whole thing, giving us answers for extreme situations in the film from everyday products (if you've seen it you'll know what I mean, if not, then I'll just say Anti-dandruff!) I personally loved this film and couldn't have thought of a better cast. I thoroughly recommend this to all as the variation of actors should appeal to all. Like I said above I thought David Duchovny was the star of this and gave it something special, if your a fan of his you will love this. At £1.50 from Amazon, basically a bit of pocket change, this is a must have. The running time is 1 hour and 38 mins and it is rated PG. There are no amazing special features, which is a shame as a gag reel probably would ahve been brilliant for this. Enjoy!

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          18.11.2009 14:49
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          Brillaint film for the whole family

          This film is an absolute classic now, i thinks its awesome, really really funny. It's from the same director that did Ghost Busters. This film will have you hooked to your seat in tears of laughter, craving for more. The story is about to teachers and a trainee fireman, who are all brought together by metorite crash, where they accidentally discover a new life form. A single celled organism that abruptly evolves millions of times faster than the human race could ever imagine. It rapidly spreads, and soon a huge are is infected with weird and wonder full creatures that start to attack the population. It is therefore down to these 3 to save the world, but their efforts are slowed by and interfering army general who wants to shoot first and ask questions later. Eventually they join forces to try and save the human race before it is too late and using a rather unconventional method ( I won't spoil the ending) they fight back against the aliens.This film is a must for the whole family.

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            03.09.2009 14:42
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            Well worth a watch

            When I first saw this film I thought it was the funniest film I'd seen in ages, however having watched it a few times now I've discovered that it doesn't really stand up to repeat viewings. The story follows two college science lecturers, Dr Ira Kane (David Duchovny) and Harry Block (Orlando Jones), who discover that alien life is emerging from a meteor that crashes near their town. They are keen to investigate further however the government quickly seals off meteor site. Ira and Harry realise that the alien life is evolving quickly and so they go chasing after them whilst the government makes plans to blow them up. Can they come up with a better solution before the alien life evolves further? The highlight of the film has to be the finale where the aliens meet their end in a funny and fairly bizarre manner. David Duchovny displays a talent for comedy, as does Julianne Moore who plays Dr Allison Reed, a government scientist. However, I fail to understand why Julianne Moore's character has a habit of falling over all the time as I found it both pointless and annoying. The humour is partly slapstick, partly gross-out and partly intelligent and there are more laugh-out loud moments than it is possible to count. Unfortunately after repeat viewings the jokes fail to remain funny. I think the problem is that most of the jokes rely on shock value to make the viewer laugh (the scene where an alien creature has to be extracted from Harry Block's body being a case in point) and so if you've seen it before, you know what is coming. There were a few flaws in this film but it is still definitely worth seeing. I'm not really into science fiction but I still enjoyed this.

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            07.08.2009 13:23
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            A lot of fun

            A meteor falls to Earth and Dr Ira Kane (David Duchovny) and Harry Block (Orlando Bloom) discover that it contains alien life forms which are capable of extremely quick evolution. While this is at first fascinating, it soon becomes clear that this rapid evolution poses a threat to human life. This is a very silly movie with a flimsy plot line and so many ridiculous situations that by the end of the movie you don't care how bad it is but just laugh along. This movie has a Ghostbusters feel about it and doesn't take itself seriously which really helps the character become all the more appealing and likeable. There are quite a few butt jokes for some reason, but not the usual crude kind, instead there is a fun tit for tat moment between Harry Block and the aliens. You'll know what I mean when you watch the movie. The special effects were quite impressive; each alien is very different yet wonderfully detailed and has some similarity to creatures on earth. This is a good movie to see if you just want some laughs and a bit of Seann William Scott transposes Stiffler like humour into yet another role.

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              22.02.2009 19:39
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              Not fully Evolved...

              David Duchovny is Our Hero, disgraced scientist and buddy to acme black-guy-who-gurns and makes references to color (Orlando Jones.) Julianne Moore is the love interest. There's a nice cameo turn from Dan Aykroyd. And they have to save the world. Deja vu? Wait. Best of all, after an age of trying, it looks like CGI has finally found a way to blend itself into the background without looking like a Harryhausen effect. And therein lies the saving grace of the movie: The monsters. The CGI is flawless. And I don't say that very often. The design of the beasts is fantastic, and they're executed in such a seamless fashion that it's hard to believe that the numerous slimy, scaly, usually toothsome creations weren't actually wreaking havoc on the set. Hats off, effects guys. Unfortuneately, the plot is lacklustre and steals heavily from Reitman's 80's opus. I could have watched Coming To America. Or Beverly Hills Cop. Indeed, the whole feel is of an X-Files episode shoved in a blender with any given Eddie Murphy movie. Add Ghostbusters syrup, some crushed ice, and you've got an Evolution smoothie. Fellas, a groovy logo and some ass jokes do not a movie make. Even then, the ass jokes are derivative: It's almost as if the writers have seen American Pie and said 'I know! put a couple of gross-out rectum jokes in! That's what kids want!' But the effect, though funny, jars with the rest of the movie. Would you really want to see Venkman, Spengler and Stanz fight a ghost whose scary ability was to fart a lot? Thought not. What we've got, then, is a film of many parts, stitched together into a pretty entertaining evening. Perfect video fodder, this'll probably do better for the home market, and that's where I'd recommend you watch it. It'll get buried by Tomb Raider anyway, so at the moment, treat it as what it is: mid-grade, summer filler. Incidentally, there's definitely something unsettling about using Ted 'Put The Lotion In The Basket' Levine as an army general...

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              14.10.2008 15:14
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              Have a nice end of the world

              Evolution - a theory and now a film! It's directed by Ivan Reitman, who gave us the classic "Ghostbusters" and not so classic but still very good "Ghostbusters 2". Here, he helms another supernatural comedy, and even manages to bring aboard Dan Aykroyd in a small cameo role. When a meteorite falls to earth near the small town of Glen Canyon, two college professors, Dr. Ira Kane (David Duchovny) and Prof. Harry Phineas Block (Orlando Jones), are given the job of examining it. While they are doing just that, they find organisms of an extraterrestrial origin. And not just that, they are evolving at a incredible rate, even while Ira is watching. Soon the military show up and completely seal off the meteor. Completely ostracized from their discovery, they keep doing research, and are surprised when the original discoverer of the meteor, Wayne (Seann William Scott), brings in what looks like a monster. Soon them and Allison (Julianne Moore), a government scientist brought in by the military, all have to team up in order to stop the aliens from taking over the earth. Ivan Reitman is back on form here, and brings us a very funny film with more than a passing resemblance to "Ghostbusters". For anyone who watches "The X-Files", who knew Duchovny could do comedy? He also appeared in "Zoolander" the same year as well, perhaps he wanted to do some comedy. Anyway, he's good and his usual cool laid-back self here, Jones and William Scott provide a lot of good laughs, although Scott seems to be doing the same kind of character he's played in previous films. The main cast all have great chemistry together and play off each other well, I don't know how it would work but I wouldn't mind seeing a sequel. The effects look very impressive, both computer effects and the more practical ones, the up close dead aliens look very life like. The scene where they take out a flying dragon-like alien in a shopping centre is very reminiscent of "Ghostbusters", with the trio dispatching the invader with similar bad-ass style. Overall a very exciting and funny film that I think is somewhat overlooked filled with likeable characters, memorable moments and great special effects, four stars.

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                02.08.2008 20:51
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                Deserved more publicity - a brilliant film!

                I was never aware of the box office release of this film - I just happened by it on one of the cable channels just a few months ago. It obviously wasn't hyped particularly well when it was released, but I think with the right publicity it could have been BIG! In the opening scene there's a man with a blow up doll. This worried me a little, and I thought perhaps the tone of the film wasn't going to be quite my cup of tea! However, I needn't have worried. The man is Seann William Scott (Bulletproof Monk and Dukes of Hazzard), and he is practicing for his Fire Fighter's exam, so he throws the doll into a little shed in the middle of nowhere, sets fire to it, then proceeds to rescue her! Out of the corner of his eye he sees a meteor hurtling towards him. He escapes, but being the first witness, he is on the scene when David Duchovny (X Files) and Orlando Jones (Bedazzled) get involved. They are teachers at the local college, although it transpires Duchovny's character has a history in the military and is trying to regain some credibility. I won't give away too many plot details here because the reason he needs to regain credibility in the first place is actually really funny. Basically, they find primitive life at the meteor site and take a sample. Back in the lab. they discover this life form is evolving at an alarming rate. When they return to the meteor site it has been closed off and taken over by the military - the same military whom Duchovny used to work with/for. Again, I don't want to give away too many plot details as I really think that will spoil it. It's probably not giving too much away to say that the military, of course, have completely the wrong ideas about how to deal with the evolving life forms, and refuse to listen to the pleas of our heroes (the only ones who have any clue how to deal with the menace). Our three heroes team up to follow a large pterodactyl-like alien to the local shopping mall. This is, for me, the funniest scene in the whole film. Seann William Scott sees a microphone in the mall and decides to try to attract the alien by making 'ka-kaw, ka-kaw' sounds into the mike. When this fails, he starts to sing. It probably doesn't sound that amusing seen in black and white here, but it really is funny. Our heroes then team up with Julianne Moore, who had been working with the military but finally came to see sense, and they, together with a few college students set out to win the day - before the military destroy the world! This review is deliberately vague in relation to the plot as I really believe that having the whole plot laid out in front of you will simply detract from the movie. The overall feel of this, for me, was that it's very like Ghostbusters - there are three heroes battling against the authorities, who want to do the one thing that will make things worse. The irony is that in this movie the Governor who needs to be convinced is actually Dan Ayckroyd, of Ghostbusters fame! It wasn't until after I'd watched the movie that I discovered it is an Ivan Reitman film - a familiar name from Ghostbusters! There are places, I suppose, where the film could have been better. Perhaps they didn't have the budget of Ghostbusters. It wouldn't have taken much, just a little fine-tuning here and there. Overall, though, I think it's a really funny film, and now it's one of my favourites. I've since seen Seann William Scott in a couple of other movies - he had been completely under my personal radar until I saw Evolution, but now I think he's pretty funny. The film is rated PG. The running time is 98 minutes. The DVD comes with extra features - Making of Featurette, Production Notes, Filmographies and Trailers. According to the leaflet inside my DVD case, the script was originally written as a dramatic science fiction thriller, but Ivan Reitman worked with the screenwriters to transform Evolution into a science fiction comedy. You can pick up a copy from Play.com for £3.99 including delivery, or alternatively you can get one from Amazon marketplace sellers starting from 95p (plus p&p). This one gets my personal recommendation - I really only watched it for David Duchovny (because I'm an X Files fan), but I'm so glad I did - it's brilliant!

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                  27.06.2008 16:42
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                  Fun, but ultimately a one or two time only watch

                  If Charles Darwin had seen this film, he'd probably have bashed his head against the wall in frustration and given up writing The Origin of the Species. Science might never have been the same, but on the other hand, he would probably have had a lot more fun. Evolution is one of those films that the world "fun" was made for. It's not a deep film, it's not a complicated film and it's probably not a film you're ever going to watch more than a couple of times. That doesn't make it rubbish though: just fun. The basic plot sees a metor land outside the small town of Glen Canyon, where it's discovered by local science teachers Ira Kane and Harry Block. Then creatures start to evolve from the rock at an alarming rate, threatening the survival of the human race. The reason Evolution works so well is that it has a script which doesn't attempt to take itself seriously. Everything is very silly and knows it. This is backed up by some excellent comedy performances from the cast, who are clearly having a lot of fun with the material. Possibly the biggest surprise is David Duchovny as Kane, sending up his X-Files persona with real glee. Duchovny plays everything very straight. With his poker face and wryly ironic tone, he proves a very charismatic lead. Orlando Jones provides excellent support as his slightly dizzy sidekick and colleague and the two of them create a very funny double act. Feeding off each others lines and wise-cracking their way through the film, much of the humour comes from their slightly childish relationship with each other. Seann William Scott's would-be fire-fighter is good for a few laughs too. OK, it might only be a slightly modified version of American Pie's Stifler, but Scott clearly believes in the old adage "if it ain't broke..." and sticks with that he knows. There's fun too, to be had from the two brothers - as thick as two short planks, but desperate to please their hero Kane. Sadly, though, there are also a couple of weak links: Julianne Moore has an underwritten role which only serves to prove that she can't do comedy, whilst Dan Aykroyd turns up in a slightly embarrassing role as the state governor. Given the many similarities this film has to Ghostbusters, you can't help but feel that Aykroyd signed on to try and recapture the success of his youth. For a medium budget film, the special effects in the film are pretty good. This is particularly true during the early stages of the evolution process, when all sorts of weird and wonderful creatures start to develop. The creature designers were clearly allowed to let their imaginations run riot and just develop anything they fancied. It gives rise to a wonderful array of spectacular creatures that look both weird and convincing. It's a little sad, then, that the monsters we see later in the film don't quite live up to this early promise. A flying dragon type creature inevitably appears, whilst the film's final creature is disappointingly rendered and looks thoroughly unconvincing. Despite the film's short running time (around 101 minutes), this is definitely a film of two halves, with the first half coming out on top. The weirdness of the creatures, together with the interplay between Duchovny and Jones make it fun to watch. However, once they've got themselves a lot of weird creatures, the writers seem unsure what to do next and seem to be struggling to find a suitable ending. The result is that the second half tails off really quite dramatically. It becomes far more clichéd and formulaic; less an updated creature-feature B Movie homage, more a direct rip-off of some of the worst ones. The turning point comes when it's discovered that the way to kill the monsters is through the use of a certain hair product. After this, the film descends into little more than a glorified advert for said shampoo. Product placement in films is often annoying, but here, it's so blatant, it's a central part of the plot. It starts appearing in shot after shot after shot and the actors' dialogue is twisted and mangled to get them to mention the said hair care product by name as many times as possible. It's crass, cheap and completely lets down the fun, imaginative film that's gone before it. It's a shame Evolution couldn't have come up with a better, more solid ending. After a promising first half, it tails off dramatically and lets itself down with a very weak ending. The comedy and fun of the first half becomes tainted by the memory of the poor and lazy second half. It could have been another fun B Movie homage which became a cult, like Slither, Tremors or Lake Placid. As it is, it falls short of those pace setters. A fun film, sure, but not one you're going to want to watch very often, Basic Information ---------------------- Evolution 2001 Director: Ivan Reitman Running time: approx. 101 minutes Certificate: PG © Copyright SWSt 2008

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                    05.06.2004 16:11
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                    This is one of those reviews that you almost don't really need to read. The title just about says it all. In fact, if any of you are feeling lazy, just scroll down and give me my VH now. I won't hold it against you. Still here? Aw, I love you guys. Evolution is so clearly a product of the creators of the Ghostbusters movies that it's almost painful. Plot, characters, the whole concept behind the film, even a few actors and the director are a clear legacy of Reitman's early success. So, two broad-minded American scientists, working in academia, stumble across a strange phenomenon. One of them is serious and dedicated, the other a workshy wise-cracking charlatan more interested in the ladies than his subject. They investigate the phenomenon, which results in them chasing around a lot of freakish special-effect creatures. The phenomenon rapidly accelerates due to the heavy-handed intervention of the authorities, and the amateurish team are forced to save the day with a hastily-improvised but heroic final stand. This is all familiar. Just as familiar is the attempt to muscle in on the summer blockbuster action with a comedy, throwing in piles of special effects in the hope that people won't notice. The thing that people often forget about Ghostbusters is that it's a surprisingly old-fashioned film in many respects, relying on comic characterisation and slapstick far more than its huge budget. Evolution does the same thing. For all the skilled design work involved with the alien creatures, the emphasis is always more on reaction shots. And of course, the commanding presence of Dan Ackroyd hammers the point home. Reitman is inviting comparison with his earlier work. Big mistake. There's one thing missing in Evolution. Bill Murray. Both David Duchovny and Orlando Jones seem to represent different aspects of the Venkman character. Jones's 'Harry Block' is the clown who clearly leaves the actual science work to his more capable colleague. And Duchovny's Ira Kane is the chap who gets the girls. But neither of them quite have the scruffy charm that Bill Murray exudes in buckets. Neither is quite cynical enough. Neither, frankly, are quite funny enough. And that's a problem for a comedy, let's be honest. Rising star Sean William Scott joins the team to play the Winston character (in other words, the practical guy to whom the scientists explain technical stuff). Once again, he plays a goofy lovable loser. To be fair, he's getting quite good at that part, but it would be nice to see if he's capable of doing anything else Julianne Moore's character is possibly the film's greatest mistake. She plays a faintly neurotic government scientist, who is 'amusingly' accient-prone, and is also the token love interest for Kane. Quite why Reitman found it necessary to provide a girl for David Duchovny, a man who's spent seven or eight years not getting off with his co-star, to everyone's frustration, is a mystery. And why Julianne Moore, who acquitted herself with such tearful dignity in Magnolia agreed to resort to playing a one-joke squeeze doing pratfalls all over the set is just unfathomable. But this film does have quite a lot to recommend it at the same time. I thought the trailer was a particularly stunning piece of promotion - starting off in the style of the X-Files before exploding into comic scenes with the 'There's always time for lubrication!' sequence. The use of the song Play that funky music, white boy also has to be applauded, because I like it. The spoof on product placement and sponsorship in films is also very welcome. With Lara Croft's Ericsson and Range Rover endorsements making Austin Powers's Starbucks sequences look positively subtle last summer, it's about time someone parodied this terrifying trend. And I'm sure Head & Shoulders won't be complaining too much either. Now, I've noticed that people tend to be quite dismissive of fart jokes in films. I've read quite a few reviews marking down Shrek for example. So while I'll admit that they're not exactly subtle, can I just say here that the reason producers put toilet humour in their films is simple. People laugh at them. Despite the fact that they know they should be above such childishness, and despite the po-faced reviewer sat behind them in the cinema tutting. Evolution is full of jokes that aren't big or clever. The whole sequence in which Block has a bug removed from his colon is extremely juvenile. But a combination of Orlando Jones's comic timing and facial contortions, Duchovny's deadpanning ('He thinks he's an athlete,') and Moore's straight woman feeds make for a classic scene of low-brow humour which will be endlessly quoted for YEARS. Still, there's a couple of things in particular that did jar. One was a piece of low-brow humour which undermined the characters, when Ira Kane demands his shirt back from an old girlfriend. That whole argument was petty and childish, and while it showed another side to the character, it wasn't a side that was developed afterwards. It was utterly irrelevant, and smelled slightly of padding material. There's also an exercise in stating the bleeding obvious when the two scientists find the small alien worms for the first time. Picking one up with tweezers, Kane watches it die before uttering the bizarre conclusion: 'It can't survive outside of its own atmosphere.' Well, DUH! I mentioned Dan Ackroyd's appearance as the state governor earlier. It's an odd one. While Ackroyd seems comfortable enough acting as the authority figure after a career of playing rebels and outsiders, it still feels a little strange watching him. The p ower of typecasting, I suppose. A couple of his lines are a little superfluous as well. The audience has already grasped the unsavoury way in which the Alienbusters are going to attack the alien menace at the thrilling climax (in a converted fire engine, instead of a converted hearse), so we don't really need Ackroyd's incredulous: 'It looks like they're preparing to give it a monster enema!' Still, the way in which Ackroyd effortlessly humiliates the military goons highlights his comic skills. Evolution will probably be better remembered than most of that summer's big movies. Only Shrek and Planet of the Apes really topped it in terms of quality, although Swordfish's showcasing of Halle Berry's chest has ensured that film lives beyond its sell-by date. It's a flawed comedy, but still an excellent piece of evidence that it IS possible to make a decent effects-heavy film. The effects, which have been carefully designed to make the creatures look like nothing from this world without looking too stupid, are prominent, but at every stage in the film it is the characters' reactions to these colourful creatures that take precedence. CGI is used as a tool rather than an end in its own right. As it should be.

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                      20.11.2003 20:16
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                      Before the release of Evolution back in 2001 I was a little dubious to say the least. The lack of advertising seemed to suggest to me that it really wasn’t going to be that good. All that seemed to be used was the little yellow smiley with the three eyes and that really worried me. But I went to see it anyway, not really sure why but I did and left the cinema pleasantly surprised. It wasn’t anywhere near as bad as I thought it was going to be. Welcome to Glen Canyon, Arizona, one of those towns you see in a lot of American based film. Quite a big place with everything you would ever need. Wayne (Seann William Scott) is a waiter at the local Golf club but he’s training to be a fireman. The night before his fireman’s exam he heads out into the desert for some last minute practise. However whilst here a meteor strikes his car sending it flying into the air and leaving him Stranded. The police take charge of the situation and cordon of the area until a local College professor, Harry Block (Orlando Jones), the local representative of the Geological society is sent to investigate. Along with Dr Ira Kane (David Duchovny) they start to investigate the rock, which appears to be Evolving turning it’s cavern in the desert into an atmosphere for what ever species it is to live and grow. As they discover what’s going on the army suddenly get involved as Kane was an army Dr and they monitor everything he does. But as the new species rapidly evolves strange animals start to over run the army feel it’s time for them to step in and with a team lead by the clumsy Dr Allison Reed (Julianne Moore) close off the area to Harry and Ira. This then leads to some very amusing moments such as the fly in the suit scene. The film is directed by Ivan Reitman who was part of the team behind Ghostbusters and Road Trip, which suggests the film will be relatively funny. However it’s the way the script is written to s eem totally inane but hilariously funny at the same time that really makes it into more than the mediocre film it could have been. Although saying that there are some moments in the script where you just think, that’s not right. The direction on the whole is good though and the film is pretty easy to follow, without jumping and leaving huge plot holes. The casting on the whole was good. Although I’m a big fan of Duchovny from the X-Files I was a little sceptical as to whether he could actually pull off a comedy film, but with the aid of Jones it works very well. I’d never actually seen Jones in anything before but will have to look out for him in more, but one scene will stick in my mind and that is the one I mentioned earlier. I wont ruin it for anyone who hasn’t seen it but I’ll just say it will explain the title!!! The other main character played by Julianne Moore is a little clumsy and ditzy, to try and add to the comedy effect on the film. However I think the chemistry between her and Duchovny, which is fairly similar to the Mulder and Scully partnership on the X-Files, works very well in this film. All three leads really are quite funny, but it’s Seann William Scott who makes the film for me. His comical timing and ability to pull off some of the silliest things really is highlighted after he teams up with Kane and Block and ends up singing in the middle of a mall to attract the attention of a giant bird. His presence in any film where a teenage type character is need is always brilliant and this is no exception. The special effects are pretty good and the development of the new atmosphere in the cavern is done well. They created all sorts of different types of animals and creatures for it and all of them look quite realistic, even the “Blue Monkey”. This again was something that could have made the film or sent it onto the I Wish I’d Never Bothered list. Fortunately I& #8217;d say it actually made it. Overall it’s just a pretty stupid film that’s ideal for those nights where you just want a no brain type of film. The casting works reasonably well and the script is aided more by the directors vision than the actual content but it is always a good film to watch, which I still find reasonably amusing after seeing it god knows how many times 2 years after its release.

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                        27.11.2002 21:14
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                        Bad aliens

                        Evolution opens with a meteor travelling towards Earth, whilst a firefighter does strange things with a blow-up doll. This made me wonder if the tone for the whole film would be a sort of American Pie with aliens. In fact Wayne Grey, played by Seann William Scott, is in the desert to practise for his firefighter exam. All he is doing is rescuing the doll from a burning shed. Moments later a meteor crashes into the ground just metres away from him. The next day two college lecturers come to investigate the crater in Glen Canyon, Arizona. Dr Ira Kane and Harry, played by David Duchovny and Orlando Jones, are not the most serious or ethical of teachers. Harry is a United States Geological Survey Investigator, and he ropes Ira in to help him take samples of the rock. It's oozing a strange goo.

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                          06.09.2002 21:37
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                          Investigating a meteorite strike in Arizona, Dr Ira Kane (David Duchovny) and his colleague Harry Block (Orlando Jones) find out that it’s brought to earth more than just rock. Hitching a ride are single-cell organisms that rapidly evolve into complex multi-cellular beings that like their new home rather too well. The Centre for Disease Control, in the persons of General Woodman (Ted Levine) and Allison Reed (Julianne Moore) get wind of Ira and Harry’s find, but the space beings are spreading through the state at a rapid pace... Evolution began life as a serious SF script by Don Jakoby but was much rewritten (David Diamond and David Weissman are also credited). Now it’s played for laughs, in an attempt to repeat the success of Men In Black and Reitman’s own Ghostbusters. Unfortunately it plays exactly as it sounds: a serious SF film punctuated with lame jokes and one of the most blatant product placements in history. Yes, the placed product gets to save the Earth! The Monsters are terrible, as with men in black there has been no attempt to make them look at all real, they look a little like something out of monsters inc. David Duchovny is as personable as ever, but Julianne Moore can do much better than this. Evolution passes the time, but it’s a half-hearted movie, diluted SF and half-baked comedy. Would I watch this film again? Maybe, if it came on the television. Would I buy this film? Certainly not. Rating out of ten: 4/10 Last word? Far too cheesy, couple of good one-liners.

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                            23.07.2002 07:20

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                            A hillarious comedy from the director of the equally brilliant Ghostbusters double. - Advantages: Well written screenplay, Great cast, top special effects - Disadvantages: a little predictable

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                            23.07.2002 02:18
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                            This is one of those reviews that you almost don't really need to read. The title just about says it all. In fact, if any of you are feeling lazy, just scroll down and give me my VU now. I won't hold it against you (apologies for my 'churning' by the way but times are hard!). Still here? Aw, I love you guys. Evolution is so clearly a product of the creators of the Ghostbusters movies that it's almost painful. Plot, characters, the whole concept behind the film, even a few actors and the director are a clear legacy of Reitman's early success. So, two broad-minded American scientists, working in academia, stumble across a strange phenomenon. One of them is serious and dedicated, the other a workshy wise-cracking charlatan more interested in the ladies than his subject. They investigate the phenomenon, which results in them chasing around a lot of freakish special-effect creatures. The phenomenon rapidly accelerates due to the heavy-handed intervention of the authorities, and the amateurish team are forced to save the day with a hastily-improvised but heroic final stand. This is all familiar. Just as familiar is the attempt to muscle in on the summer blockbuster action with a comedy, throwing in piles of special effects in the hope that people won't notice. The thing that people often forget about Ghostbusters is that it's a surprisingly old-fashioned film in many respects, relying on comic characterisation and slapstick far more than its huge budget. Evolution does the same thing. For all the skilled design work involved with the alien creatures, the emphasis is always more on reaction shots. And of course, the commanding presence of Dan Ackroyd hammers the point home. Reitman is inviting comparison with his earlier work. Big mistake. There's one thing missing in Evolution. Bill Murray. Both David Duchovny and Orlando Jones seem to represent different aspects of t he Venkman character. Jones's 'Harry Block' is the clown who clearly leaves the actual science work to his more capable colleague. And Duchovny's Ira Kane is the chap who gets the girls. But neither of them quite have the scruffy charm that Bill Murray exudes in buckets. Neither is quite cynical enough. Neither, frankly, are quite funny enough. And that's a problem for a comedy, let's be honest. Rising star Sean William Scott joins the team to play the Winston character (in other words, the practical guy to whom the scientists explain technical stuff). Once again, he plays a goofy lovable loser. To be fair, he's getting quite good at that part, but it would be nice to see if he's capable of doing anything else Julianne Moore's character is possibly the film's greatest mistake. She plays a faintly neurotic government scientist, who is 'amusingly' accient-prone, and is also the token love interest for Kane. Quite why Reitman found it necessary to provide a girl for David Duchovny, a man who's spent seven or eight years not getting off with his co-star, to everyone's frustration, is a mystery. And why Julianne Moore, who acquitted herself with such tearful dignity in Magnolia agreed to resort to playing a one-joke squeeze doing pratfalls all over the set is just unfathomable. But this film does have quite a lot to recommend it at the same time. I thought the trailer was a particularly stunning piece of promotion - starting off in the style of the X-Files before exploding into comic scenes with the 'There's always time for lubrication!' sequence. The use of the song Play that funky music, white boy also has to be applauded, because I like it. The spoof on product placement and sponsorship in films is also very welcome. With Lara Croft's Ericsson and Range Rover endorsements making Austin Powers's Starbucks sequences look positively subtle last su mmer, it's about time someone parodied this terrifying trend. And I'm sure Head & Shoulders won't be complaining too much either. Now, I've noticed that people tend to be quite dismissive of fart jokes in films. I've read quite a few reviews marking down Shrek for example. So while I'll admit that they're not exactly subtle, can I just say here that the reason producers put toilet humour in their films is simple. People laugh at them. Despite the fact that they know they should be above such childishness, and despite the po-faced reviewer sat behind them in the cinema tutting. Evolution is full of jokes that aren't big or clever. The whole sequence in which Block has a bug removed from his colon is extremely juvenile. But a combination of Orlando Jones's comic timing and facial contortions, Duchovny's deadpanning ('He thinks he's an athlete,') and Moore's straight woman feeds make for a classic scene of low-brow humour which will be endlessly quoted for YEARS. Still, there's a couple of things in particular that did jar. One was a piece of low-brow humour which undermined the characters, when Ira Kane demands his shirt back from an old girlfriend. That whole argument was petty and childish, and while it showed another side to the character, it wasn't a side that was developed afterwards. It was utterly irrelevant, and smelled slightly of padding material. There's also an exercise in stating the bleeding obvious when the two scientists find the small alien worms for the first time. Picking one up with tweezers, Kane watches it die before uttering the bizarre conclusion: 'It can't survive outside of its own atmosphere.' Well, DUH! I mentioned Dan Ackroyd's appearance as the state governor earlier. It's an odd one. While Ackroyd seems comfortable enough acting as the authority figure after a career of playing rebe ls and outsiders, it still feels a little strange watching him. The power of typecasting, I suppose. A couple of his lines are a little superfluous as well. The audience has already grasped the unsavoury way in which the Alienbusters are going to attack the alien menace at the thrilling climax (in a converted fire engine, instead of a converted hearse), so we don't really need Ackroyd's incredulous: 'It looks like they're preparing to give it a monster enema!' Still, the way in which Ackroyd effortlessly humiliates the military goons highlights his comic skills. Evolution will probably be better remembered than most of last summer's big movies. Only Shrek and Planet of the Apes are really likely to top it in terms of quality, although I keep hearing good things about Swordfish. It's a flawed comedy, but still an excellent piece of evidence that it IS possible to make a decent effects-heavy film. The effects, which have been carefully designed to make the creatures look like nothing from this world without looking too stupid, are prominent, but at every stage in the film it is the characters' reactions to these colourful creatures that take precedence. CGI is used as a tool rather than an end in its own right. As it should be.

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                            Based on the evidence in Evolution, one thing is perfectly clear: special effects have evolved, but director Ivan Reitman has reverted to primitive pandering. Equally obvious is the fact that Evolution is a defacto rip-off of Reitman's 1984 classic Ghostbusters, but this time there's no Bill Murray to deliver the best punch lines (we have to settle for fellow ghostbuster Dan Aykroyd in a broad supporting role) and the comedy has devolved into a gross-fest including deep-rectal extraction of alien insects, fire-hose enemas into a giant alien sphincter, and a full-moon display of David Duchovny's naked posterior. Whereas Ghostbusters was a shrewd, irreverent mainstream comedy that combined gooey spectral ectoplasm with something resembling genuine wit, Evolution is a crude, juvenile romp in which all things slimy are elevated to comedic supremacy. Granted, that's not always a bad thing. As latter-day Ghostbusters equivalents, Duchovny, Orlando Jones and Seann William Scott make a fine comedic trio, and Julianne Moore is equally amusing as a clumsy scientist and Duchovny's obligatory love interest. Despite the meddling of clueless military buffoons, they join forces to eradicate a wild variety of rapidly evolving alien creatures that arrived on Earth via meteor impact, and the extraterrestrial beasties (courtesy of effects wizard Phil Tippet and crew) are outrageously designed and marvellously convincing. For anyone who prefers lowbrow humour, Evolution will prove as entertaining as Ghostbusters (or at least Galaxy Quest), while others may lament Reitman's shameless embrace of crudeness. One thing's for certain: after seeing this film, you'll gain a whole new appreciation for Head & Shoulders shampoo. --Jeff Shannon, Amazon.com On the DVD: Evolution's special effects and CGI are seamless and crystal clear in anamorphic widescreen with some of the "creatures" looking more realistic than the actors. This is a movie with quite a few set pieces, but none show off the Dolby 5.1 soundtrack better than the dragon attack in the mall, connect up a couple of speakers and you can hear the flap of leathery wings behind your couch. In terms of extras there's a making-of documentary from HBO called The Evolution of Evolution, hosted by Orlando Jones, in which he interviews his co-stars (most of whom seem to ignore him) and the director Ivan Reitman. You also get the behind-scenes track on the special effects and art direction. Other than that you get the theatrical trailer, the teaser trailer and the original trailer for Ghostbusters, which adds a touch classic 80s' memorabilia. --Kristen Bowditch