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movie reviewmovie review out of 4 Movie Review: Evolution

Starring: David Duchovny, Orlando Jones
Director: Ivan Reitman
Rated: PG-13
RunTime: 104 Minutes
Release Date: June 2001
Genres: Comedy, Sci-Fi/Fantasy

*Also starring: Ted Levine, Wayne Duvall, Katharine Towne, Julianne Moore, Seann W. Scott, Sarah Silverman, Dan Aykroyd, Sarah Silverman, Ethan Suplee

Review by Susan Granger
2½ stars out of 4

"Let's shampoo some aliens," shouts David Duchovny to the Glen Canyon Fire Department as they set off to save the world from total destruction by phantasmagorical creatures from another planet. Absurd? Totally - and that's the key this goofy sci-fi comedy from Ivan Reitman, who heists the idea from his own "Ghostbusters." The story begins when meteor crashes in the Arizona desert, narrowly missing a dense wannabe fireman, Seann William Scott, practicing for his fire-fighting test. He alerts a local geologist, Orlando Jones, who recruits Duchovny, a former government scientist now teaching at a community college, and they discover one-cell organisms that are evolving at an exponential rate. "Snag one and put him in the bucket," says Duchovny, envisioning a Nobel Prize. "I've seen this movie," Jones wise-cracks. "The black dude dies first. You snag it!" There's the inevitable government interference in the form of Julianne Moore, a brainiac epidemiologist from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), who soon realizes there's a bigger danger than the military. And I'm not referring to Jones's anal probe, Scott's serenade in a suburban shopping mall, or "Ghostbuster" veteran Dan Aykroyd as the undignified Governor of Arizona. Ivan Reitman and screenwriter Don Jakoby's satirical, cliche-laden, four-misfits-save-the-universe formula is outlandish as Duchovny plays preposterously off his wry, deadpan "X-Files" persona, while Jones provides fast-paced comic relief - but not as effectively as Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith in "Men in Black." Moore's the klutzy, slapstick eye-candy and Scott's there for the teeny-boppers. On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Evolution" is a zany, silly 6. Rated PG-13, it's a cockamamie summer comedy.

Copyright 2001 Susan Granger

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