IMDb > Physical Evidence (1989)
Physical Evidence
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Physical Evidence (1989) More at IMDbPro »

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Popularity: ?
Down 11% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers (WGA):
Steve Ransohoff (story) and
Bill Phillips (story) ...
View company contact information for Physical Evidence on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
27 January 1989 (USA) See more »
If he's innocent, the truth could save him. If he's guilty, the lies could kill her. See more »
A police officer suspended and now accused of murder is forced to join forces with his court-appointed attorney to assemble the pieces of a deadly puzzle to find the missing link before time runs out. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
(15 articles)
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User Reviews:
Theresa Russell defends Burt Reynolds against a murder rap See more (12 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Burt Reynolds ... Joe Paris

Theresa Russell ... Jenny Hudson

Ned Beatty ... James Nicks

Kay Lenz ... Deborah Quinn

Ted McGinley ... Kyle

Tom O'Brien ... Matt Farley

Kenneth Welsh ... Harry Norton

Ray Baker ... Strickler
Ken James ... Hank Carruth
Michael P. Moran ... Tony Reugger
Angelo Rizacos ... Tony Sklar
Lamar Jackson ... Delmar Fraser
Paul Hubbard ... Burt Knight
Larry Reynolds ... Trial Judge

Peter MacNeill ... Brannigan
Laurie Paton ... Mabel
Don Granberry ... Vincent Quinn

Barry Flatman ... Brody

Malcolm Stewart ... Ames
Richard Fitzpatrick ... Kravitz
J. Winston Carroll ... Samson
Kathy Michael McGlynn ... Gladys
Djanet Sears ... Sheila
Claire Cellucci ... Tanya
Micheal Donaghue ... Frank Stelia

Anthony Sherwood ... Lou
Angie McNab ... Amy Farley

Laurie Holden ... Matt's Girl

David Clement ... Warden Debilis
Steve Whistance-Smith ... Lee
David Efron ... Buddy
Stan Barett ... Tiny
Kenny Bates ... Jumper
Matt Cooke ... Arraignment Officer
Michael Rothery ... Doctor
Gene Mack ... Brawny Guard
Chris Thomas ... Nicks' Cops
Norm Henderson ... Nicks' Cops

Stewart Arnott ... Nicks' Assistant

Eddie Driscoll ... Jenny's Assistant
David Ferry ... 1st Cop
Victor Ertmanis ... 2nd Cop

Michael Copeman ... Potential Juror
Diane Douglass ... Woman Juror (as Diane Douglas)
Allan Aarons ... Bastianelli
Steven Hunter ... Bailiff
Jennifer Inch ... Waitress
François Klanfer ... Louis
Terry Tweed ... Arraignment Judge
Louis Negin ... Jake Farley
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ken Roberts ... Principal (uncredited)

Directed by
Michael Crichton 
Writing credits
Steve Ransohoff (story) and
Bill Phillips (story)

Bill Phillips (screenplay)

Produced by
Don Carmody .... executive producer
Martin Ransohoff .... producer
Original Music by
Henry Mancini 
Cinematography by
John A. Alonzo 
Film Editing by
Glenn Farr 
Casting by
Lynn Stalmaster 
Production Design by
Dan Yarhi 
Art Direction by
Dennis Davenport 
Set Decoration by
Jacques M. Bradette 
Costume Design by
Betsy Cox 
Makeup Department
David R. Beecroft .... hair stylist (as David Beecroft)
Philip Leto .... hair stylist: B. Reynolds (as Phil Leto)
Brian McManus .... makeup artist: B. Reynolds
Dorothy J. Pearl .... makeup artist: T. Russell (as Dorothy Pearl)
Katherine Southern .... makeup artist
Production Management
Michael Brownstone .... unit manager
Marie-France Caron .... unit manager: Montreal
Joseph E. Foley .... unit production manager: Boston (as Joe Foley)
Joyce Kozy King .... production manager
Pierre Laberge .... production manager: Montreal
Lisa Plonsker .... post-production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Bill Bannerman .... second assistant director
Fergus Barnes .... third assistant director
Alice Bouvrie .... second assistant director: Boston
Don Granberry .... first assistant director
Art Department
Daniel R. Bradette .... assistant set decorator
James F. Breithaupt .... art department controller
J. Tracy Budd .... property master
Brian Carson .... scenic artist
Devra Cohen .... art department trainee
Don Conley .... assistant set decorator
Tracey A. Doyle .... props buyer: Boston (as Tracy Doyle)
James Halpenny .... head carpenter (as Jim Halpenny)
Gustave Meunier .... set decoration buyer
Nancey Pankiw .... assistant art director
Jeff Poulis .... assistant props
Donald Vandewater .... construction supervisor
Sound Department
Ross Carter .... assistant sound editor
Paul Coombe .... sound re-recording mixer
Bruno DeGazio .... assistant sound editor
Alison Fisher .... assistant sound editor
Alan Geldart .... sound effects editor
James A. Gore .... foley assistant
Alison Grace .... dialogue editor
Penny Hozy .... dialogue editor
Sharon Lackie .... supervising sound editor
David Lee .... dialogue recordist
Andy Malcolm .... foley artist
Michael O'Farrell .... supervising sound editor
Daniel Pellerin .... sound re-recording mixer
Steve Switzer .... boom operator
Jim Thompson .... boom operator: Boston
Don White .... sound re-recording mixer
Special Effects by
Rory Cutler .... special effects
Al Griswold .... special effects: Boston
Kaz Kobielski .... special effects
Stan Barrett .... stunt coordinator: Boston
Shelley Cook .... stunt double
Steve Lucescu .... utility stunts
John Stoneham Jr. .... stunt double
Kenny Bates .... stunts (uncredited)
Brian Christensen .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
David R. Anderson .... gaffer (as David Anderson)
David Crone .... camera operator
Steve Danyluk .... gaffer: Montreal
Marc de Ernsted .... key grip: Montreal
Michael Kohne .... key grip
Piroska Mihalka .... still photographer
Thom Ryan .... focus puller
Dave C. Sheridan .... clapper loader
Joe Vitagliano .... camera operator: Boston second unit
Jack Volpe .... key grip: Boston
Charles Beetz .... best boy: Montreal (uncredited)
Barbara Hanania .... assistant camera: Boston (uncredited)
Scott Rathner .... first assistant camera: "a" camera, Boston (uncredited)
Casting Department
Stuart Aikins .... casting: Toronto
Peter Lavender .... extras casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Graham Docherty .... wardrobe master
Madeleine Stewart .... head wardrobe
Editorial Department
Peter Amundson .... additional editor
Larry Engelmann .... color timer
Cherie MacNeill .... assistant editor
Michael Pacek .... assistant editor
Peter Ransohoff .... assistant editor
Music Department
Stephen A. Hope .... music editor
Transportation Department
Hartley Greenleaf .... transportation captain: Boston
Norm Henderson .... transportation coordinator
Other crew
Renee Bodner .... script supervisor: Boston
Stanley Brossette .... unit publicist
Michael Brownstone .... location manager
Susanna David .... continuity
Martin Earl .... production office assistant
Lori Greenberg .... production secretary
Jake Miller .... craft service
Mark Moore .... assistant location manager
Cindy Morton .... production executive
Mayda Renizzi-Holt .... assistant production auditor
Ken Ryan .... production auditor
Judith Tatar .... assistant: Mr. Carmody
Deborah Zwicker .... production coordinator
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
99 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

While "Physical Evidence" has the flavor of movies from another era, the movie evokes the spirit of 1940s film noir fare and those big-city dramas that featured tough and mysterious characters never at a loss for words or action in the face of bewildering odds, the picture is set in Boston, USA during the late 1980s.See more »
Continuity: (at around 1h 27 mins) It is night when the cop brings food to the cruiser. But, seconds later it is clearly daytime.See more »
Jenny Hudson:[as Jenny's lips get romantically close to Joe's] No way, Jose.
Joe Paris:I ain't Jose.
See more »


What was the title of the theme music played at the start of the movie?
See more »
Theresa Russell defends Burt Reynolds against a murder rap, 16 January 2016
Author: msroz from United States

"Physical Evidence" (1989) is an unheralded neo-noir. Burt Reynolds is excellent as a suspended cop. He's short-tempered. He drinks to the point where he blacks out. Like "Dirty Harry", he plays rough in a very rough game against criminals always seeking the upper hand. But he's not a murderer. He was suspended because he shoved his partner through a window when that partner was about to shoot an unarmed suspect.

Burt has integrity. When a scumbag extortionist named Farley is murdered, Reynolds is framed for the crime. Physical evidence is all against him. When he finally does discover his alibi during a period when he had blacked out, he doesn't want to expose the witness (Kay Lenz) to danger from her husband who would kill her if she testified she was with Burt.

Defending Burt is Theresa Russell, rather new in the public defender's office but capable and sure of herself. She's all right in the role. The prosecuting attorney is Ned Beatty, always pressuring Russell to cop a plea, but she refuses. Even her boss thinks she's risking Burt's life with this strategy.

The story is told in a different way than most such stories. It mixes courtroom scenes with scenes out of court, because Burt is out on bail. It doesn't become a courtroom drama solely, and it doesn't become an investigative drama solely. It merges the two. A romance element very gradually creeps in between Reynolds and Russell, as she sheds her bond salesman fiancé. The movie delves in some detail into the family criminal business of the dead Farley. The character of his lying son is built up nicely and he testifies in court. The judge has to make several rulings, and his part is nicely-developed too.

Prior reviewers are mostly very negative on this film. I don't see it that way at all. It seems to me to be a perfectly normal or average neo-noir crime story. It's quite watchable. The thing about it is that it tends to be very steady in tone, lacking extended high spots or intense spots or memorable dialog. It has its moments of action and tension, however. They're not overdone or exaggerated as in some more recent neo-noirs.

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