I Am Legend (2007)

I Am Legend Review

I Am Legend discards the main plot point presented in Richard Matheson’s novel of the same name in order to dumb it down and make it into an action/thriller. Rather than being a thought-provoking film such as Blade Runner, it is just the latest vehicle for Will Smith to make some money for everyone involved. The main point of the novel (and the previous film adaptation The Omega Man) is that the main character (Smith in this case) is the last surviving member of the human race and he is the physical representation of what will soon become legend, not unlike Neanderthal or Cro-Magnon man in humanity’s prehistory.

The antagonistic race of beings (in I Am Legend they’re simple-thinking monsters) fighting against the last man’s violence are not an aberration; they are the future.

What Will Smith’s character, Robert Neville, is supposed to come to grips with is that he is the aberration and his fight is pointless. The human race, in its new form, has moved on and Smith’s character is just the last breath of a former, soon-to-be-extinct past.

There is supposed to be no tragedy when Smith’s character dies, just as there was no tragedy when Neanderthals were replaced by homo sapiens. There is no last surviving colony up north to bring a genetic cure to, which would be missing the whole point.

As an action film, I Am Legend is serviceable, but as a thought-provoking vision of a possible future (as the book was), it fails miserably.

I Am Legend Best Scenes

I Am Legend poster
Yell! Rating (x/5 Skulls):
Year Released:
11 December 2007
Francis Lawrence
Will Smith, Alice Braga, Charlie Tahan, Salli Richardson, Willow Smith
Sci-Fi, Action
Official URL:
I Am Legend the movie

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