Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Evidence (2013) DVD Review


Review By
Patrick Scattergood

Written By
John Swetnam

Directed By
Olatunde Osunsanmi

A Bold Films, FilmEngine, Marc Platt Productions Film

Genre
Horror, Found Footage

Cast

Caitlin Stasey as Rachel
Radha Mitchell as Detective Burquez
Stephen Moyer as Detective Reese
Nolan Gerald Funk as Tyler Morris
Harry Lennix as Ben
Torrey DeVitto as Leann
Dale Dickey as Katrina Fleishman

Certificate
15

Synopsis

A team of homicide detectives attempt to piece together what happened at the scene of a brutal massacre using a number of recording devices found at the crime scene.  The footage reveals a group of passengers stranded in the desert when their bus is derailed while on their way to Las Vegas.

With no signal or water they make their way to a nearby abandoned warehouse to find help.  However, things soon go from bad to deadly when a mysterious masked killed, equipped with a blowtorch, turns on the group and they are ruthlessly murdered one by one.

Special Features
  • None

Review

As frequent visitors to this site know, I'm not that big a fan of the found footage genre in itself.  Yes there are some good to great ones in the genre but for the most part, they all seem to follow near identical plot lines and points, coming across as copies of one another.

Yet when I saw that this one would both combine the normal style of horror movie with the found footage style, I was intrigued to see if they would make the two mesh without it becoming too disjointed and confusing.

After watching this, I must admit that while it didn't exactly break new ground for me, it was still a hell of a lot better than some of the other additions to the genre that I have seen.

For a start, the movie itself has a pretty good cast with Radha Mitchell, Stephen Moyer and Henry Lennix involved.  I'm a big Lennix fan after seeing him in the '24' series so it was a bit of a blast seeing him in this too but the three of them weren't really in it for that long, leaving the rest of the movie to be carried by a group of people I hadn't really heard of that well.

There were a couple of times where the cast members kind of merged in to one another and it became a little tricky to follow who was playing whom but unlike most found footage movies, there were some great moments of clarity from a few of them.

However, that said, one thing did bother me a little.  Stephen Moyer's portrayal of Detective Reese was good, making him haunted and I wanted to see more of him yet other than a couple of moments where his dialogue moved the plot along, he wasn't really used that effectively.

That said,  the cast do a pretty good job with the movie itself.  You can't really help but get pulled along with their fear and their panic in places.  It's true that the dialogue is a little stilted in places but it's a lot better than a lot of other horror movies I've seen recently.

Another thing that I liked about the movie was the blending of the two styles.  You would get sucked in to the found footage parts but before it could start to grate on the viewers nerves, it would cut to the normal part of the movie and show the detectives trying to make sense of the footage.  It was a brave move by the movie makers to go that route but it works pretty well for the most part.

However, there were a couple of moments that took me out of the movie slightly.  One thing that has always bugged me about the found footage genre is that people in the movie film while scared for their lives or they film while their friends are getting brutally murdered.  That's always bugged me but with a genre like this, it's kind of the nature of the beast really.  If you didn't see the murders or them running away then you wouldn't have a movie.

I would have loved to have seen a couple of special features or even just a commentary to see and hear just why they attempted to go this route with 'Evidence' because while it's not the most original movie I've ever seen, it is a brave attempt at making a movie that would stand out from an already over saturated genre.  I still would have loved to have seen a little bit more of Moyer's character though.

All in all, it's true that not all the movie is 100% successful, there is still a lot to recommend it to horror fans despite it's relatively disappointing score on IMDB.  Well worth renting at the very least.

Movie 7/10
Picture 7/10
Sound 8/10
Special Features N/A
Overall 22/30


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