By Christina La, Courier Editor-in-Chief
I Am Legend directed by Francis Lawrence, is set in a spooky empty future Manhattan of New York. The stunning glimpses of what a city could look like when a plague wipes out human life are around every corner - forests of weeds thrusting through city pavement, disrepair and emptiness in the streets.
The story shows three years earlier, when doctors came up with a cure for cancer. It worked but unleashed another more virulent plague, which may have killed 90% of the world’s population.
Robert Neville (Will Smith) is the last man on earth as far as he can tell. As a scientist, he continues to search for a cure. As a man, he’s searching for a human companionship, food, and safety.
Stores that are placed around his neighborhood offer him the promise of connection, an eccentric way of keeping isolation at bay. However, food stores are running low in Neville’s home, but he is settled into a pleasant routine. He ends each day drawing the blinds and heavy wooden shutters to hide himself from the unknown outside.
Neville develops a silent language with Sam, his loyal dog. Their survival depends on teamwork and their chemistry is lovely. Lions, deer and who knows what else are roaming the streets of New York. They’re immune to the airborne virus, but not the physical element. These animals are hungry, and so is Neville. Much of his day is spent hunting them for food but he never makes a hit.
Victims of the man made virus lurk in the dark, people who have mutated into super strong, hairless and extremely angry predators. They are powerless against light and look about the same as any other monster – white, pasty, big teeth in need of some care, and lean muscles.
Aside from the brilliant art direction and Smith’s resounding performance and that cute dog, I Am Legend slightly disappoints. There is little innovation, and as is so common in films this season, the ending really has no sense of excitement.
By Charles Yi, Courier Staff Writer
"I Am Legend" came out with a bang with record‑breaking numbers at the box office, bringing in an astounding $76.5 million on opening weekend.
Overall, it was a good movie and offers an interesting take on our future. "I Am Legend" is a sci‑fi, action‑packed movie that stars Will Smith as Robert Neville, a scientist who has survived a cancer‑curing‑turned‑deadly virus.
The movie is based on a 1954 science fiction book of the same name by Richard Matheson. I Am Legend has been adapted to a feature-length film three times. The book has also been adapted into a graphic novel titled Richard Matheson's I Am Legend by Steve Niles and Elman Brown.
His only companion in Manhattan, and perhaps the world, is his German shepherd, Samanatha. Smith continues to search for a cure and for survivors by day, and battles mutant zombie cannibals who were infected by the virus by night.
Will Smith, once again, is at his best, giving an All‑Star performance by showing strong emotions and character in this solo role. The action was absolutely sick, holding my attention for a full two hours, and the special effects were so amazing that the zombies were actually believable. On an ending note, kudos to whoever casted the dog; she was great.