DVD Review: Evidence

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I consider myself easy to please when it comes to genre films. I don’t expect any movie to venture too far outside of the lines these days. As much as I hate saying it, there really is nothing new under the sun. I just want the filmmakers to take what’s been done before, shake it up a bit, and give it their own spin. Unfortunately, Image Entertainment’s Evidence falls short of achieving the aforementioned goal.

Five people are murdered at an abandoned desert gas station. Two detectives are given the job of sifting through the only evidence left at the crime scene: video footage from the cell phones and cameras the victims shot. It soon becomes evident that the killer is playing with the two investigators. The two must now piece together what happened before the psychopath decides to strike again.

A friend of mine gave me some good advice one time. He told me that any drink or food that has more than one synonym in its description can’t be good for you. I find this can apply to movies as well much of the time. Evidence is one of those films. It can be described using several different terms like horror, thriller, slasher, and found footage. If you can do it successfully, it really doesn’t sound so weird to have these different elements mixed together.

The two biggest issues with Evidence is pacing and believability. Long stretches of nothing happen while people walk around with flashlights and cell phones, which gets old quickly. It sort of sabotages the element of surprise. How can we be surprised by something unexpected happening when we’re constantly waiting for it? I can’t even begin to tell you how implausible the outcome of the movie is.

The cast of Evidence is impressive for an indie film. It stars Stephen Moyer (True Blood) and Radha Mitchell (Silent Hill, Olympus Has Fallen) as detectives investigating the killings. Torrey DeVitto from Pretty Little Liars plays lead victim Leann.

As I watched Evidence, I kept wondering if I would find Oren Peli’s name among the producers of the film. It plays out like a drawn-out version of Friday the 13th meets The Chernobyl Diaries. At least director Olatunde Osunsanmi was smart enough to pull out of the found footage enough to give audiences a break from the overused filming technique and show what sort of chops he really has.

If you like found footage and slasher movies, then Evidence might appeal to you. It tries really hard to mash the two sub-genres together. However, the film falls apart due to poor pacing and an unbelievable finale.

Evidence is available now on Blu-ray, DVD, and a Digital Download.