I Am Legend Review

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Firstly, Merry Christmas and I hope you've all had the chance to enjoy some time off and relax a little.

For those of us out and about today, apart from the boxing day sales, a possible visit was the local multiplex for the UK debut of the latest Will Smith blockbuster, I Am Legend.

Smith takes the role of Robert Neville, one of the last remaining humans left and certainly the last in New York. Three years earlier a cure for cancer had unseen effects and burst out of control. A large percentage of the population simply died, others become super human vampire/zombies with a craving for all things edible. Luckily a smaller percentage were for some reason immune to the virus but rapidly became the favoured meal of choice for legions of rabid human monsters.

Neville remains alone with his dog, continuing his research, finding food and maintaining an almost nomadic existance. Until things start to happen.

The next part will spoil your enjoyment if you have not seen the film

More survivors find Neville, thanks to his transmissions. They talk of god and his will, a reverting to nature and a divine punishment. And surprise, surprise, a human colony where survivors exist and they can reach. Before things all go horribly wrong, but the ending just turns out nice, very nice in the end.

Its ok to read again

The real star of I Am Legend is New York. Problem is that within the first few seconds you know that it is empty of life and nature has taken over. However the director takes every opportunity to remind you of that fact, when really, you should be moving on with the plot. Yes, ok NY is quiet and overgrown and 'isn't that Times Square?' and is this Godzilla again but with less destruction?

While I Am Legend is a decent cut length wise, it just doesn't know what it wants to be. It cannot be a horror flick as it has a large budget to recoup and an 18 just wouldn't do. It cannot be a sci-fi type adventure as these never do very well and it cannot be a comment on modern life as its just too shallow. So what you are left with is a mix that really fails to deliver is most areas except special effects.

At least The Omega Man kept its focus and did not become diverted. For Smith its a reasonable performance given the setting and spending a great deal of screen time with nothing more than a dog. Overall I Am Legend could have been alot worse, but I'll be looking out Omega Man soon enough.

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