January 07, 2008

I Could Have Been A Much Better Film

Writing about web page http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0480249/

Movie image
I Am Legend
3 out of 5 stars

When I first saw the trailer for this movie, it was intriguing, if a little cliched. Lone man haunted by screaming monster in the dark. The announcement of the name of the movie made me cringe: "I Am Legend". It seemed so very Hollywood and was an immediate turn off. In my ignorance, I did not know of the 1950s novel bearing the same name that apparently inspired this film (although I have watched The Omega Man). But it starred Will Smith and as I'd already watched what was worth watching at the cinema (and what was not worth watching) I thought I'd give it a try.

I thoroughly enjoyed the first half hour of the film. I thought Will Smith was perfect. The scenery was perfect. The dog was perfect. The fear and loneliness created a wonderful atmosphere in the film. The suspense continued right until we first meet the CG beasties: the infected. 

I Am Legend teaches two lessons on the use of CG in a film:

1) When used properly it can enhance the film and increase immersion (CG New York)

2) When used improperly it can completely ruin the mood (the infected)

I don't want to 'ruin' the plot for you, so I won't go into specifics. The infected were poorly-done. The latter half of the film is full of little niggling plot holes that make one wonder if the film was forced into such an edit by the producers (in fact the film could have done with an extra half an hour or so). You'll find yourself wishing that the film fulfilled its potential instead of wasting one of Will Smith's better performances in years. 

If you've got 90 minutes to spare, it's worth a watch. It's better than The Golden Compass. Drop a star if you don't much like Will Smith or powerful performances. 

Movie Highlight: "Don't go in there Sam!"

- 3 comments by 1 or more people Not publicly viewable

  1. “Don’t go in there Sam!” – big annoying problem from that (why didn’t they notice him…?)

    I got hold of the book a couple of months back because I prefer to know what the story behind the film is. I have to say that it’s a little different in so far as the infected are actually vampires who can wander around and chat and what not. You’re right that the CG fooks it up. Oh, and the end.
    They still managed a “happy” ending even after the obvious “oh nooooo” bit.

    And I thought the Golden Compass was a pretty crap adaptation…

    Cynics all.

    07 Jan 2008, 22:49

  2. Big annoying holes throughout the whole film (where the hell did all the deer come from?). Unfortunately most of the really niggling errors will reveal the plot.

    “Don’t go in there Sam” was the highlight simply because Will Smith was clearly scared out of his wits and you could feel the tension throughout the cinema. Hand-over-light, sweat, darkness, wonderful!

    The end was awful. And begs all sorts of questions that I wish I had spoiler tags for!

    I’m intrigued enough to read the original novel though.

    Oh one thing I forgot to add – Emma Thompson accidentally responsible for the destruction of the human race? Believable. Never allow the woman near a test tube.

    08 Jan 2008, 00:00

  3. Dr Crippin!

    08 Jan 2008, 00:47

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