Monday, July 13, 2009

I Love 'I Am Legend', I Hate 'I Am Legend'

I very recently read I Am Legend by Richard Matheson. It's a great book. I was genuinely stressed while reading it, which is how I know. In Nicole's world, everything is measurable by emotions.

Last night, we sat down to watch the latest movie adaptation because Evan finished up reading the book. I knew it was going to be nothing like the book - both because everyone and their mother hinted at it and because of seeing the trailers for myself. Some changes don't bother me as long as they make sense when translating a novel to film. Of course, modernizing a story from the 1950's is a must. The typical movie-watching minds can't handle anything "old-fashioned". I don't begrudge Hollywood that. Gotta make money. But, while I understood certain changes (ie, adding the dog from the beginning just to give him someone to talk to and develop character), I am sad that they put such a respectable title on that pathetic excuse for a movie. It was loooooosely based on the novel, at best.

Am I biased? Of course I am! One of my favorite Vincent Price movies is the original movie based on Matheson's book. They called it The Last Man on Earth. While it was dissimilar from the novel in many ways, it was still far more worthy of the I Am Legend title than this Will Smith nightmare.

A note about CGI. I hate it anymore. I hated the boring, screamy, annoying creatures in this movie. There was nothing interesting about them at all. I'll take those hammy looking zombie things from The Last Man on Earth anyday! Makeup and acting, please! No more shitty CGI creeps. And exactly where did the inspiration for them come from (if there was any)? Certainly not from the book.

And let's not forget about The Omega Man from the 70's. I love that movie, too. It was also loosely based on the novel, but they had the decency not to put the same name on it.

I think my bitterness against brainless entertainment is the reason I read what I read. I read classic horror and sci-fi because it is philosophical. It makes you think. On top of that, it scares you and stresses you out. Bonus. And I get irritated that many movies are so vapid. Especially when they drag respectable entertainment down with them.

I Am Legend was about mankind moving on. It was about one man's emotional roller-coaster and survival - not about monsters. They're just the dramatic and exciting backdrop that the real story is played against. It ultimately ends with Robert Neville's realization that he's the freak now, the last of his kind, the legend. Remember that Twilight Zone episode called "Eye of the Beholder?" Kinda like that. I see none of this in the movie I watched last night.

Why so pissy, Nicole? What does it matter? It doesn't. But it's what I think. Haha.

1 comments:

Laurie Whitney - Mermaid Glass said...

Not pissy. I agree totally. I saw Omega Man when I was really little and it haunted me. It was the scariest movie I ever saw, for reasons that had nothing to do with the white-faced vampire types. I read the book later and loved it. So, of course, I got excited when I saw they were remaking it. Yeah, right. Stupid movie.

 
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