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"...you're watching another version of Ghostbusters..."

 

EVOLUTION
Rated PG-13


Director:
Ivan Reitman
Screenwriters:
Don Jakoby, rewrite by David Diamond and David Weissman.
Cast:
David Duchovny (Ira Kane), Orlando Jones (Harry Block), Julianne Moore (Allison Reed), Seann William Scott (Wayne Green), Dan Aykroyd (Governor of Arizona)
Running Time: 113 minutes
Released: June 22, 2001

 

ALTERNATE REALITY Review by Lawrence Evans
HIS RATING: SOMEWHAT RECOMMENDED (** stars)
 
Lets begin with a history lesson-this film was written as a drama by Jacoby and turned into a comedy by the Family Man team of Diamond/Weissman. This very fact is why the film isn't as good as it could have been.

The plot of Evolution is simple, a meteor from outer space crash lands on Earth and the contents begin to evolve once exposed to our atmosphere. This rock lands when American Pie's Scott is practicing being a fireman out in the middle of the Arizona desert. Local scientists Jones (who behaves like Bill Murray in Ghostbusters) and his buddy Duchovny (who has connections with the government he'd rather not talk about) investigate until Moore (who works for the CDC) and military genius Levine take things over. Of course, the two local boys know more than the government pinheads but this won't come up until it's needed to move the story along.
 
David Duchovny is along to make dead pan comments about the proceedings. Jones is along to make smart remarks about everything, lighten things up, screw everything that moves (a subplot that is totally ignored) and get things stuck in his butt. Scott, as always, is there to be totally goofy and clueless. Moore's character is supposed to be funny because she falls down and drops anything she's handed but the bit wears thin after the first stumble. Levine is along to be the government tightass and Ackroyd is there just to be himself.

As you sit through Evolution it begins to dawn on you that you're watching another version of Ghostbusters (more like Ghostbusters 2) with different actors. The Duchovny character is Harold Ramis, Jones is Bill Murray (he is introduced discussing a coed getting extra credit to improve her grade), Scott is Rick Moranis (remember, this is more like G2), Moore is a combination of Sigourney Weaver and Annie Potts, Levine is William Atherton and Ackroyd is himself with a real job.
 
Evolution isn't as funny as Ghostbusters because it doesn't really take any chances. It seems to be holding back for some reason. The interpersonal relationships between the characters works well but none are given much to work with. With the possibility of us never seeing Ghostbusters 3 I think instead of bringing in the Family Man team Reitman should have taken whatever Ramis and Ackroyd had then funneled it into this film. It would have been much funnier and probably wouldn't have died at the box office last weekend.
 

EVOLUTION    2001 Montecito Picture Company.
All Rights Reserved.

Review 2003 Alternate Reality, Inc.

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