I Am Legend is based off the classic novel of the same name written by Richard Matheson. Francis Lawrence and Will Smith tackle yet another version of the influential story.
Set in post apocalyptic New York Robert Neville survives by following his basic routines and every day precautions. Scientist, father, and husband Neville is left with only his daughters dog as a companion against the world now turned monsters...will Neville overcome his loneliness or slip into suicidal madness? Will he discover a cure for the dreaded infection or forever run in the circles of a tired scientific theory?
Let me start off by saying this (which you are probably tired of me saying) is based off one of my favorite books. So keep this in mind because my review is completely biased and based off this mentality.
In watching the trailer I was preparing to see a lot of concepts that could possibly have made this movie suck. Fortunately not many of these judgments came to pass. No turret mounted Mustangs, no happy endings, and no Will Smith comedy routines.
Smith actually did a great job in the role despite the massive differences in race and age that were crucial to it's source material. He's taken yet another successful step at becoming a respectable well rounded actor. But of course the Big Willy style doesn't leave us without a couple smiles amidst his intense teary eyed relationship with his dogs and mannequins. Smith balances his comedy and drama well for the role.
I truly believe Francis Lawrence is an amazing visual story teller. Constantine was crisp, tight, and pure camera poetry. The young filmmaker's only weakness is he leans too heavily on CG. As with Constantine the filmmaker takes the easy way out. The CG was a right footed limp to Legend.
Being a fan of the book it's obvious the soul of the story is important to me. The script is unfortunately a transparent ghost of the original story. It's like the screenwriters took the concept and soul, put it through a washing machine, hung it to dry, and then wrote their own version. They plagiarized a story that could easily be recognized as the idea but not a respectable adaptation. It's like seeing a father and son. "Hey they seem similar, but wait, they are completely different people".(lame analogy)
I liked it. I honestly did. I didn't love it but I enjoyed myself. I guess I was just relieved that the movie didn't go down the roads I feared it would. Lawrence and company have probably pulled off a success. But as far as the movie rising up the ranks or being remembered beyond DVD sales?...there won't be a sequel.
I would recommend seeing it this holiday season. You won't lose anything and besides...you get to see the AMAZING Dark Knight trailer.