I’ve been toying with the idea of covering this film for over a year now and after watching it again ( for the umpteenth time ) over the weekend I finally caved in and went for it!
You see, Evidence is not 100% Found Footage…it’s not even 90% Found Footage! At a crack I’d say about 75% of it sticks to the genre when the rest is played out in ‘normal’ fashion.
But I have covered these sorts of films before on this site and they always seem to go down quite well.
Besides, this is a pretty good film…
A rather hefty massacre has taken place at a abandoned gas station in the Nevada desert. There are a ton of dead bodies that are so messed up the police are struggling to identify them.
In the middle all this carnage they manage to locate a camcorder that seems to cover certain events that have taken place. The ‘found footage’ on the camera is then examined by a specialized law enforcement team in an attempt to find out more about this grizzly crime scene.
We follow this team as they comb through the evidence on the camcorder…
Director Olatunde Osunsanmi has cleverly given himself a simple yet unique platform to work off with this title. The switch over of genres allows him to sidestep the monotony that often comes with certain Found Footage movies.
Unfortunately the two separate filming styles manage to differ greatly in quality – the Found Footage sections are excellent whilst the ‘reality shots’ seem a little tired and unplanned in places.
I thought Stephen Moyer’s character ( Detective Reese ) was pretty engaging throughout the film but Radha Mitchell ( Detective Burquez ) didn’t seem to fit her role so well.
I struggled to believe she had anything to do with the police force at times due to her rather cardboard and strained portrayal. It’s not down to her talent – I actually quite like her as an actress, it’s more down to her ‘fit’ in this film.
I don’t think this is entirely her fault at the end of the day – writer, John Swetnam, had both hands on the wheel when it came to delivering a believable screenplay.
I couldn’t help but think that he’d relied on too many ‘police babe’ cliches for Mitchell’s character!
There’s no getting away from the fact that Evidence offers bags of enjoyment for Found Footage addicts – even though it is not a ‘true’ genre offering.
The faults in the film ( mainly on the screenplay side of things ) are easily outweighed by the tense and interesting direction the film moves in.
Whilst Radha Mitchell’s character seemed like she was cut out of a cereal box at times there’s no getting away from the fact that she, and the surrounding cast, are good actors.
I feel that Evidence is a pretty impressive attempt to cross the divide and get those Found Footage ‘haters’ onside with the genre. Even though there are irritating holes in it’s delivery – I still felt as though it worked overall.
As an added bonus I liked the way they managed to pluck Steven Moyer from that shitty True Blood crap and give him something he could finally stretch his legs with…
Turns out he’s not that bad an actor after all!
A interesting addition to the genre – worth 80 minutes of any Found Footage fan’s time.