Our housemate is an avid movie watcher, and is constantly getting me to watch movies. I've gained the reputation of someone who doesn't like to watch movies, but don't get me wrong - I do love movies, but when I'm at home I always have this nagging feeling like I shouldn't be wasting my time watching a movie, I should be doing other, more important things that need to be done around the house
Anyway, he's one of the high-usage NetFlix subscribers that's actually harmful to their business model, so he's got something new about every other day. Once in a while he hooks me with a movie that I actually do want to sit down and watch, so Sunday night we watched I Am Legend.
Obviously it had been a loooong time since I'd read the novel, because I was irked by the ending.
Why? Well, we watched the DVD alternate ending version, not the version they actually showed in theaters. In the theater ending he realized he'd found the cure, gave it to the girl and the kid and sent them on their way, and sacrificed himself, leaving them to bring the cure to the human colony, therefore supposedly saving humanity. In the DVD version he lets the female darkseeker revert and gives her back to the alpha male darkseeker, and, seeing they've retained the emotion of love, decides it's time to leave NYC and heads to the human colony with the girl and the kid.
My first thought was, "Well that was stupid." I mean, he had the cure, and now the darkseekers were going to leave him alone. He also had clear evidence that the darkseekers had not reverted to complete savagery, and had retained some of their humanity. Why the hell did he leave? He could have stayed and cured them all! WTF?
Then, of course, I re-read the synopsis of the original book, and of course the whole point of it was that this was the "new human race," and the existing humans were now the ones who would disappear (becoming legend).
However, that's not how the movie played out at all. It just seemed like he did a complete 180 from his original obsessive train of thought ("I can fix this") because they weren't as animalistic as he'd first assumed. If anything, you'd think that would strengthen his resolve to cure them (as well as looking at the wall of darkseekers that had died during clinical trials - "their deaths will not have been in vain").
So, yeah. Good film, but the ending definitely left me WTFing all over the place. After finding out the theater ending, I'm not sure that would have been much more satisfying for me, either. I mean, I really did like that whole last scene, with the interplay between him and the darkseekers, right up until the point that he became an entirely different character in the last 30 seconds of the film, but if there was no clear evidence that the darkseekers still had some humanity left in them, I likely would have chalked the whole thing up to another horror flick; finding out they misinterpreted the source material probably wouldn't have helped, either (i.e., in that version, they wouldn't have accepted that humanity had fundamentally changed).
So there's my movie review for today. :)