Hey gang, Valkor here. And could it be… is it possible that somehow I’ve discovered a “found footage” film that’s not only equally as good as V/H/S but actually surpasses it in every step of the way? I honestly didn’t know what to think when I popped in Evidence (Directed by Howie Askins); and from the start I thought I was getting much of the same. All I know is that by the end of the film… I wanted more! Some minor spoilers ahead.
Evidence centers on a group of four 20-somethings – Ryan (Ryan McCoy), Brett (Brett Rosenberg), Abi (Abigail Richie), and Ashley (Ashley Bracken), camping out in the woods, filming a documentary that centers on Brett. For the most part no one, save for Ryan, wants to be there and they don’t hold back on their complaints – these guys complain A LOT! But even with their complaints, the group is still having some laughs. However “good” times turn to bad when they discover some “thing” is lurking in the woods. The first night they only hear a strange scream. However the next day they spot a shaggy creature hanging out in a ravine.
On the third night, Bret can’t take it any longer and the following day he vanishes. Ryan goes out to look for him and he never returns, leaving the women behind to fend for themselves. And that’s when the fun really begins as the creature that was initially stalking them is now on the attack, chasing the two women into a military compound, right into the arms of a soldier type who defends them against not only the initial creature, but crazed humans and other twisted beasties. That’s right, Evidence goes from being a “found footage” documentary type of film, right into House of the Dead/Resident Evil, first person shooter territory and I don’t mean the films, I mean it’s the video games come to life filled with loads of guns and cheesy lines. Had one of those guys mentioned anything about picking locks I would have lost it!
I can’t and I won’t go into any further detail because from there it’s just insane what happens to the point that a) I couldn’t even believe what I just saw and b) I was completely blown away by it all. Oh and that ending, the shit that happens during the end credits, that needs to be extended into a film all its own. I would love to see that happen!
Everything about Evidence, from the jump, felt cliché, so by the numbers when it comes to found footage films – the annoying characters, extreme shaky cam, and the predictable jolts that happen throughout. Make no mistake I was on the verge of popping out the DVD and tossing it in the trash alongside “Axed”. But then the whole military thing happens and it changed my view of the film COMPLETELY! I’m talking total 360! In the beginning, I was bored, really not invested in the characters or the story all that much and I wanted everyone to simply die so I could move on to something else. But then the all this crazy shit started happening, guns blazing, weird creatures started popping up at every turn, the camera nearing its last few minutes of life, and the crazy discovery of what it’s all about and how it came to be, though never fully explained… genius! I hate being bogged down with too much backstory and Evidence really doesn’t give you much to go on. It simply sits you down and says “hold on to your butts, you're in for quite a ride”. Overall the film is an unpredictable, twisting tale of horror that pays off should you stick it out through that painful beginning.
Anything negative I wanted to say about this film gets tossed out the window completely as everything before those last 30 or so minutes of the film is pure setup for awesome.
Poor Brett, fuck that Poor Ryan, no fuck that POOR ABI!
I didn’t want to like Evidence, but I ended up loving it and it’s definitely one of the better films I’ve seen this year. The film is making the rounds slowly but surely, mostly in Europe and though I’m not sure of a digital, DVD, or theatrical release stateside, I don’t see it having a problem picking up U.S. distribution. Evidence goes from horror to survival horror, leaving you with a rollercoaster third half that’s terrifying, unpredictable, and entertaining! So out of TOV 5 stars, I’m giving Evidence a 4.5. This is definitely one film that would make the perfect addition in your Halloween film rotation!