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Overall Rating

Awesome: 6.4%
Worth A Look40.8%
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Pretty Crappy: 12%
Sucks: 17.6%

8 reviews, 77 user ratings

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by Rob Gonsalves

"Sad 'Ghostbusters' retread from Ivan Reitman."
1 stars

After watching the dedicated but deadpan-silly scientists in 'Evolution' as they face off against otherworldly critters, not to mention against bureaucratic fools who won't take the scientists seriously, I was left with a deep and intense desire to revisit 'Ghostbusters.'

That 1984 summer classic, which like Evolution was directed by Ivan Reitman, works so beautifully after all these years, I think, because of its equal measure of irony and gee-whiz excitement -- the former embodied by the jaded Bill Murray, the latter provided by costars/coscripters Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, who exuded an intellectual, visceral passion for paranormal science. Also, it was funny (an entire generation still fondly recalls the Stay-Puft marshmellow man).

Part of the problem with Evolution -- aside from the fact that it isn't really very funny -- is that it's mostly jaded; there's very little gee-whiz, almost no awe. The trio of scientists this time are biologist David Duchovny, geologist Orlando Jones, and epidemiologist Julianne Moore; non-scientist Seann William Scott, a doofus wannabe fireman, makes it a quartet (just as non-scientist Ernie Hudson rounded out Ghostbusters). In early scenes, when Duchovny and Jones discover a virulent form of alien biological crud that arrived here on a meteor, they're mildly excited, mainly because of the promise of fortune and glory. They're not overcome with scientific ecstasy the way Aykroyd and Ramis were; they're two Bill Murrays.

The alien life form, it appears, can evolve at breakneck speed and split itself via mitosis into multiple organisms. The script, by Don Jakoby, David Diamond and David Weissman, tries on a little scientific gibberish for size but largely abandons it in favor of lukewarm one-liners and jokes about flatulence and anal probes. I don't feel audiences have gotten that much stupider since the huge hit Ghostbusters in 1984; I think it's more that screenwriters have gotten lazier. Evolution, much like Men in Black, is an indistinct string on which to hang gross-out alien gags. It hasn't evolved from someone's obsessive interest, the way Ghostbusters sprang from Dan Aykroyd's fevered brow. And that, I promise, is the last comparison I will make to Reitman's far superior paranormal comedy of 17 summers ago.

What's left? Well, the laconic Duchovny and the funky Jones (who has yet to show his comedic stuff in a good movie) make a good, smart team. I'd like to see them together again, acting out a wittier script. Julianne Moore defines "good sport," playing a dorkette whose major character trait is clumsiness; Seann William Scott, from American Pie, gets the movie's most genuine laughs, particularly when he tries a hideous rendition of "You Are So Beautiful to Me" as a way to attract a huge flying bird-thing. (If the movie had any wit, it would've had the bird swoop over and capture Scott, lovestruck by his mating call.) Aykroyd -- Dr. Ray Stantz himself -- turns up as a governor apoplectic at the damage the aliens are doing to his beloved Arizona, and his presence is welcome but also saddening to those of us who remember ... Oops, almost made another comparison.

The aliens, fashioned by an ace team including the KNB EFX trio, Phil Tippett (Jurassic Park), and crittermakers Alec Gillis and Tom Woodruff Jr. (the last two Alien films), are certainly convincing as icky alien pestoids. What they aren't, especially, is funny; they're built more for horror than for comedy, and the climax gives us a massive, Lovecraftian shape that threatens to engulf Arizona but also, alas, has a rectum and flatulence problems (scenes like that make you think the movie should be called Devolution).

Guess which "entry point" the heroes must choose to introduce their special pesticide. Guess what happens then. Guess what becomes of Duchovny and Moore, whose romantic attachment seems to develop entirely between scenes. And guess what DVD I'm going to watch in a few minutes.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=4710&reviewer=416
originally posted: 01/12/07 17:12:43
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User Comments

12/29/17 morris campbell it sux 1 stars
5/25/15 JohnnyO Fun movie. It was light on clever dialogue but well cast, good premise, good popcorn flick. 4 stars
5/30/14 KennethC Good vibe, not the best film, but very enjoyable. 4 stars
12/09/09 Chris Tanner My Favourite Movie of All Time 5 stars
11/03/09 Jeff Wilder Very funny sci-fi comedy. Better than Mars Attacks or Men In Black II. 4 stars
5/19/09 Rhys Hughes Crackin' fun film. There's always time for lubricant! 4 stars
4/18/07 Stevo UK It looks like a de''Evolution'' in Film making (pardon the pun.) 2 stars
2/16/07 Vip Ebriega 'Ghostbusters' meet 'Aliens'. 4 stars
9/22/06 Charles Tatum Rejected Ghostbusters sequel without the laughs 2 stars
8/26/05 R.W. Welch Slapstick sci-fi. Okay premise devolves into FX for the sake of FX. 2 stars
6/11/05 Gecko Fanfoot A total waste of time and film 1 stars
3/21/05 Jeff Anderson Owes a great deal to director Reitman's GHOSTBUSTERS, but occasionally witty & cast is fun. 3 stars
6/05/04 john bale Another SF spoof in the MIB mold, mildy amusing thanks to a good cast and SFX. 3 stars
5/05/04 J.Peckerfoot This film is dog shit.i rarely say that about any film. 1 stars
1/16/04 Gecko Fanfoot A God-awful piece of shit AND a complete waste of time to boot! 1 stars
12/29/03 Littlepurch Funny, clever and enjoyable. Easily as good as Ghostbusters. 5 stars
6/29/03 francis Surely a film must make at least a little sense. This is plain silly. 2 stars
6/22/03 John Aster Habig Sucks like Joe Dirt and Eight Crazy Nights 1 stars
4/18/03 Ubu the Ripper Hilariously awful. How can so many good actors suck so bad at one time? 1 stars
4/12/03 Jack Sommersby A few good moments, but this is second-rate, lazy stuff. 2 stars
4/10/03 Jack Bourbon Great chemistry between Duchovny and Jones. 4 stars
2/10/03 Ubu the Ripper A complete waste of celluloid. Duchovny should be ostracized for being associated with this 1 stars
10/22/02 Jiz Fun flick, but nothing special. 4 stars
9/29/02 Butterbean The slapstick was stupid instead of funny. 2 stars
7/23/02 Bada Bing Crosby Not just unworthy of Julianne Moore, but all thinking human beings 1 stars
5/10/02 Keith unworthy of Julianne Moore's talents. 3 stars
4/15/02 Danielle Ophelia The cast was an effective compensation for its shortcomings. 4 stars
3/11/02 Jim Amusing and forgettable 4 stars
3/04/02 Alan Smithee The movie's okay, but Ms. Moore as always does a great job. 3 stars
2/26/02 J I'm pretty much with Greg, Y2 & both Eriks on this one. Good movie. 4 stars
2/24/02 Mitja Podgajski Not too bad:). 3 stars
2/10/02 Dawn Someone with "Some High School Chem" could prove their 'scientific' theories wrong! 1 stars
1/29/02 Monday Morning Very disappointing given its cast, director and EFX. 2 stars
1/21/02 The Bomb 69 should have been better, took too many shortcuts 3 stars
1/10/02 max zhang after I took the girl to this movie, she refused to have sex with me. 1 stars
1/03/02 Dave Gonyea This was sooooo bad, it hurt! 1 stars
12/07/01 Dominik Duprelle Terminal, desparate dreck-STINKS OUT THE SWAMP. 1 stars
12/05/01 KMG It was good....scott thinks it's retarded 2 stars
11/14/01 Marlene Steinberg I really enjoyed it. Took my whole family and found it to be very entertaining. 4 stars
11/14/01 Anita McNab As a X Files Fan, I knew that David Duchovny was Funny, and This Movie proves that he is. 5 stars
11/08/01 Mark "Let's shampoo us some aliens!" With quotes like that, how can you not see this movie? 5 stars
10/29/01 Mr. Hat (formerly Joe Zappa) Orlando Jones and Dan Aykroyd are the best HUMAN characters. 3 stars
10/25/01 Shane Robert Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!! one of my all-time favourite films!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
10/13/01 Bevan R. Clark A derivative piece of shit. 1 stars
9/11/01 cameron it was very very funny. 5 stars
7/27/01 Turtle It's basically just Ghostbusters mixed in with Men in Black. Who said that was a bad thing? 4 stars
7/24/01 Gizzy Fun, despite a silly final 15 minutes 4 stars
7/11/01 Katherine Perry enjoyable and funny though at moments unneccessarily sophomoric. 4 stars
7/09/01 Anne Major cheese, but I had fun anyhow. 3 stars
7/03/01 Matthew Bartley Very funny 4 stars
6/27/01 russrickee Some parts funny, was expecting it to go somewhere, but it didn't 3 stars
6/22/01 Nightraven It did rehash some existing plots, but was still a good way to have fun for a little while/ 4 stars
6/21/01 brent young funny. used the ghostbuster formula. the shampoo part was hilarious. though not all got it 4 stars
6/21/01 ArtiGrafiche Was it a product commercial, or a movie? 2 stars
6/17/01 bobbuttons nothing too serious...a good time: oh yeah, DONKEY LIPS from Salute your Shorts is in this 4 stars
6/16/01 Thor-Leo Slow, flat, predictable, phoned-in performances. Bilked out of $7.50!!! 2 stars
6/15/01 LdyArdRhi Formulaic, scrape off ghosts and put in aliens and you have Evolution...but FUNNY. 4 stars
6/15/01 mc iedh very flat,unfunny,rushed,predictable; meant to be fun and giddy but ended just plain bad 1 stars
6/15/01 BrainPan expected some jokes. I wanted to like this, but no gut-busters. Duchovny still rocks. 3 stars
6/14/01 Rampage at least it beat Starship Troopers and MIB, I think Duchovny was good 4 stars
6/14/01 Brandon Glenn Rogers just saw this film the other day, loved it. 5 stars
6/13/01 JB Poor attempt to revist Ghostbusters. Rent Ghostbusters. Yet the hairy monster was cool. 2 stars
6/13/01 fishie definately worth going to see, orlando jones is hilarous. 4 stars
6/13/01 Jim Kidd I loved it, but it seemed like something was missing from the whole movie 4 stars
6/12/01 bats If Reitman wanted to make a Ghostbusters ripoff, why not "GB II"? Lame. 2 stars
6/12/01 Darren Shea a fun, dumb comedy with good chemistry between the leads. 4 stars
6/12/01 *~Danielle*Ophelia~* (formerly KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi) Perfect summer fare...Duchovny has amazing comedic timing...Moore's good, too... 4 stars
6/11/01 Biz McNatch Easygoing and affable. Orlando finally has a real performance. Dave should always do comedy 5 stars
6/11/01 TheFirkin It's not Ghostbusters but it was great! 4 stars
6/11/01 Mike TERRIBLE 1 stars
6/10/01 BKrymsin Constant laughs; but ended with a sputter. 4 stars
6/10/01 ArtiGrafiche A piece of product marketing crapola! 2 stars
6/10/01 Benjamin Lesbian What a load of horseshit! Very pedestrian ripoff of Ghostbusters! 2 stars
6/09/01 Turtle Ghostbusters meets Men in Black. What a wonderful experience. 4 stars
6/09/01 Jim Kidd I laughed throughout the whole movie, but I felt that it was also missing something 3 stars
6/09/01 AgentDS I went to see David, nothing more! 2 stars
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  08-Jun-2001 (PG-13)


  12-Jul-2001 (M)

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