Another article in Gregs Previews but this time about I AM LEGEND:
Greg's Preview Thoughts:
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12/19/06 - One has to admire the versatility of Will Smith's career, weaving in and out of rap music, his time in the TV sit-com world, and when he emerged as a movie star, he managed to effectively do well in both comedies, dramas and big-budget science fiction movies like 'Independence Day', 'Men in Black' and (less so, but still notably) I, Robot. Choosing his projects carefully, and yet still managing to keep making movies on a regular basis, Smith has accrued a track record at the box office few other stars come close to consistently matching (only Tom Cruise has had more movies open to over $20 million). One might have guessed that his quiet little drama about a struggling father, The Pursuit of Happyness would break his streak a bit, opening in the midst of the extremely competitive holiday season, and yet Will Smith once again was the moviegoing audience's top choice, opening to an amazing (given the subject matter) $26.5 million. For his next two projects, however, Smith is returning to his comfort spot of big budget action movies, with this adaptation of the novel that arguably started the entire genre of "zombie movies" (even though they are specifically vampires in this story, not zombies) and after this, the superhero drama, Tonight He Comes. Will Smith is likeable, endearing and an adaptive cypher who is able to step into a variety of different science fiction stories and give it a unique imprint that no other star possesses. In the past, I may have criticized Will Smith for some of his more predictable stances (especially his tendency to say "Ah, hell no", or something similar), but you know, time heals many wounds, and now, looking back, I kind of like that particular little touch he brings to situations. Will Smith without "Ah, hell no" would be like Keanu Reeves without a "Whoa", Clint Eastwood without a grimace, Jack Nicholson without a grin.
And so, it's Will Smith who steps into the role of the last man on Earth, the Omega man, you might say, which might have at one time have gone to (shudder) Arnold Schwarzenegger. The difference between what Schwarzenegger would have done with the role, and the levity and humanity that Smith is likely to, well, let's just say, I'll take the "Ah hell no" (or whatever Will Smith ends up saying memorably in this one) over "I'll be back" as a memorable catchphrase. :)