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09:56 am: Went to see I Am Legend last night with doseybat and timeplease. This is another playing-it-straight zombie movie, and apparently not bearing very much resemblance to the source material.

Not sure what to make of it. I liked the details (Neville's competence at surviving - lots of cool little details there - versus his increasingly deranged state; the deserted New York; the flashbacks to the evacuation), but not the film as a whole. In particular, it would have been a better film without the last scene, leaving it more ambiguous.

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From:doseybat
Date:January 8th, 2008 07:38 am (UTC)
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Chopping out all the melodrama would have helped. But melodrama was the main point, so maybe not.
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 07:52 am (UTC)
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For some reason Hollywood don't make bleak, depressing special effects films starring Will Smith.
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From:doseybat
Date:January 8th, 2008 08:00 am (UTC)
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Could drop Will Smith to make room for longer bleak scenery shots? *looks hopeful*
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 08:08 am (UTC)
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Would we keep the dog? We need a lead, after all.
(no subject) - (Anonymous)
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 09:08 am (UTC)
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Strangely when I wrote that, I was not consciously aware that it was a bad pun. However, I can think of no other reason for writing it. It's as if my pun generator had been hardwired directly to my fingers without involving my brain.
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From:firinel
Date:January 8th, 2008 10:26 am (UTC)
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cultural imperative, me thinks.
From:thatmakesmemad
Date:January 8th, 2008 11:23 am (UTC)
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Warners have apparently bought the rights to a sequel. Not that there is a sequel to the book so how exactly they buy such rights I don't know.
The whole point of the book is the twist to the ending, not a sixth sense type twist that's been done before but an entire twist on perspective. It could only be done as the original storyline in a lower budget art house flick as it just wouldn't sell to mainstream audiences. I'd like to watch the Vincent Price version which was the first attempt.
From:shimgray
Date:January 8th, 2008 12:05 pm (UTC)
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I find it makes more sense to think of it as a remake of the Charlton Heston version (which also dumped that aspect of the book) not as an adaptation of the original - it's moved too far from that, really.
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 12:20 pm (UTC)
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One significant variance is it omitting the "still living" entirely (it hints toward a slightly smarter leader zombie, mind), found in the book and both the other movies. I would not have been surprised to find this was just a generic zombie virus script given trappings of a book (as Smith's earlier film I, Robot, was), but apparently this is not so.
From:shimgray
Date:January 8th, 2008 11:49 am (UTC)
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The first half or so was the best surviving-in-a-desolate-post-crash-world film I've seen, bar none, modulo a couple of stupid errors. The last third... less said the better.
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 11:59 am (UTC)
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We decided the lions were implausible in New York - although they might have been plausible in Los Angeles where an earlier version of the screenplay was set in. What else did we miss?

Edited at 2008-01-08 03:00 pm (UTC)
From:shimgray
Date:January 8th, 2008 12:08 pm (UTC)
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Twice (at least), we see him bolting up the windows, closing the shutters, etc etc - he's clearly alone in the house but for the dog. He ends up going to sleep curled in the bottom of the bath; dreams start.

Twice he wakes up, in bed, with light streaming in. He's somehow got from one to the other, and opened up the windows...

(As for the lions, eh, I'll give them that silliness on points :-) Burroughs used it for a deserted London, after all, so it has tradition behind it...)
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 12:13 pm (UTC)
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Hmm. I don't think I noticed that. Editing can often result in that sort of continuity error - maybe there was a bit between those they took out.
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From:doseybat
Date:January 8th, 2008 03:36 pm (UTC)
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pretty much sums up my impression. ruins of NY and explody bridges pretty!
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From:blue_mai
Date:January 8th, 2008 11:56 am (UTC)
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i want to see. the trailers look good, but yeah, i was doubtful they could do a decent ending, even without knowing the book. how scary would i find it though? (gore is ok, spooky is not-ok)
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 12:07 pm (UTC)
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Violence was relatively tame. I can see how some of the deserted-NY shots could be thought to be a bit creepy, but those were shot in a matter-of-fact way rather than for suspense.
From:shimgray
Date:January 8th, 2008 12:09 pm (UTC)
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The time he goes into the dark building, before you actually see anything? That was pretty creepy.
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From:grim_tim
Date:January 8th, 2008 01:51 pm (UTC)
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I assumed the lions were zoo escapees, cf Pride of baghdad.

Mostly I was miffed at the "ooh, pesky scientists have destroyed the world again" aspect, especially the "there is no god, there are no more survivors... waitaminute! There *are* survivors! Hey, maybe there's a god too" schtick.
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From:abigailb
Date:January 8th, 2008 02:08 pm (UTC)
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Yeahbut, they then managed to survive three Manhattan winters?

Although I wasn't keen on anything after Anna turned up, the final Vermont scene really took the biscuit.
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