I Am Legend (2007)

“I Am Legend” (2007)

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IMDb

Wayne meets Harry Potter

I confess i had put some expectations on this. I haven’t seen the old films that supposedly this one references, but still i have a great sympathy for films constrained in space and characters. This one had a great set up: New York, completely abandoned, regained by Nature after the collapse of mankind, and used by one single man! The visual possibilities of this are great, and the dramatic arc as well, even though here the success would depend greatly on what the actor did. Will Smith is a craftsman, not an artist, and what might be done with such a character is way out of his league. It was also out of Tom Hanks possibilities, and even Nicholson only came close to doing it right.

I admit, the visual result was satisfying, they resisted the temptation of exaggerating in the special effects and creating a wilder city than it deserved. Some pieces of city were really nicely imagined. But than again, they might just have done that, show us in an exhibition, and they needn’t wrap it around the crap plot, story, so on…

The major problem is the goofiness of a half-crazy character, who starts alone, and ends up the hero of all mankind. In they way he (1)finds out the cure for the virus, all alone! and (2)physically saves that discovery so that the remaining humanity might live on and learn from his example. What a hero! He suffers, he survives, he has moral, he is a scientist, he is a martyr. I think this might sound a little bit exaggerated if placed in a pre-Leone western, but right here, right now, it aches. It is a kind of straight forwardness that i may put up with in old films that have other qualities, but i just won’t take here.

So, the virus not only kills, but in reduced percentages turns humans into vampires, so that we can have the city free during the day, and so that we can have scary faces and physical challenges for Smith, as well as exploding numbers. It’s just too forced, and out of focus.

Mike Patton sounds for the vampires are nice (i read somewhere he made their sounds).

My opinion: 1/5

This comment on IMDb

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