I Am Almost Legend


I took the children to go see I Am Legend last night.


Because it is important for children to worry about mutant zombie vampires, that’s why.

Now I’ve been following this movie for quite some time. The Chuck Heston version has always been a personal favorite since childhood. I read the Mark Protosevich script online and found it to be acceptable, but for a troubled third act. It did not bring me joy to find out that the hackiest hack who ever hacked out a screen play, Akiva Goldsman, was brought on as a new writer. Nor was I pleased to find out that Will Smith was going to be playing Robert Neville.

My impotent and pointless objections from a few years ago to this news can be found here.

Pointless because this film exceeded my expectations. It isn’t great, but it’s good. As we left the theater, the boys and I agreed it was a solid B+. A couple of hours later, they upgraded it to an A-.

Here’s my only real complaint(s):

Minor spoilers follow.

The worst knock I can give this movie is that the CGI zombie vampires look like shit and aren’t that scary. Sure, they are creepy when it is dark and you can barely see them. But, when you get a good look at them, even Jar Jar Binks thinks they look lame. If you have seen any of the Brendan Fraser Mummy movies, you will feel a slight twinge of deja vu. The infected from the 28 Days/Weeks Later films are far scarier, because they were REAL PEOPLE. Trust me, there is a palpable sense of menace when a flesh and blood person is after you instead of something that the audience knows is essentially just ones and zeros. A couple of minor edits to the code and you’ve got the penguin from Happy Feet.

As an aside, we watched Transformers last night after getting back from the picture show. By comparison, Optimus Prime looked far more real than the mutant zombie vampires.

The Bob Marley stuff was a nice touch. Except, when you realize that the album that Smith is listening to is Legend. That’s when you start to groan audibly and can actually see Goldsman’s filthy prints all over the script.

The other example of his hackery is the butterfly plot device. The less said about this the better.

The third act is still problematic, but is an improvement over earlier drafts. My biggest gripe is that the title of the movie is fairly meaningless with the redaction of an important part of the original plot.

Taken without the context of the novel, it is still a good movie. The kids were scared through most of it and talked about it for hours afterwards. Hell, they are still talking about it this morning.

Now, at least they have a point of reference when I go on about our survival plans for after the mutant zombie vampire apocalypse.


5 Responses to “I Am Almost Legend”

  1. Mr. Mack Says:

    Garrigan should have nabbed you long ago.

  2. Sarcastro Says:

    I dunno. Jim Ridley is still the King.

  3. Mr. Mack Says:

    Agreed, but whats wrong with two takes on the same movie?

  4. Exador Says:

    If one good thing can come from this, I put Omega Man on my netflix Q.

  5. Les Jones Says:

    It scared the hell out of my wife. She was still talking about it the next day.

    Agreed about the zombies. The first time you see the zombies you barely see them and they’re terrifying (what the hell were they doing in that circle?). The more face time you get with them the less scary they become. It’s a rookie horror movie mistake.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: