Spoiler Points for I Am Legend (2007)

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Spoiler Points for I Am Legend (2007) [PG-13] 101 minutes
WIP™ Scale: $13.00
DVD Release Date: 18 March 2008 (click date to purchase or pre-order)
Film's Official WebsiteFilm's Trailer
Click to read the non-spoiler review

Click to see photos from the Premiere of I Am Legend

What Happened spoiler points?
A scientist played in cameo by Emma Thompson, re-engineers the measles virus such that it kills cancer cells only and, effectively, cures cancer. Unfortunately, she does not anticipate that her virus will mutate into an airborne pathogenic virus that wipes out 90% of the world's population in a matter of two years (from 2009 to 2011) and coverts 9% of those left into superhuman, Dark Seekers who have incredible strength, speed, agility, but nearly none of what made them human, or so it seems. They are also unable to tolerate UV from the sun which burns and kills them nearly instantly—sort of, yes, like vampires. They feed on humans. Other animals can also become infected: rodents and dogs, but usually not by the airborne version.
Just as things are getting bad and a quarantine of NYC is planned, Dr. Robert Neville (Will Smith) is brought in the by military to work on a cure. He tries to evacuate his family from NYC, but they are killed in a helicopter crash. Their puppy, Samantha, is all he has left. Now, 2012, he believes himself to be the only person left alive on earth. All the other survivors he believes will have been killed by the Dark Seekers.
He works daily on a cure using proteins from his own blood to explore his natural resistance. He seeks not just a vaccine but a cure to transform the Dark Seekers back into their human forms.

Rise to the Climax spoiler points
He's retrofitted his lifestyle to protect himself and Sam at night from the nocturnally active Dark Seekers right down to dousing his doorstep each afternoon with chemicals to hide his scent.
On a routine deer hunt in the city, Sam chases the deer unsuspectingly into a hive of Dark Seekers who are sleeping standing up in a huddle. They narrowly escape with their lives. Neville used the knowledge of the location, however, to plan to capture another subject for his research trials as a new compound he's developed seems to have a retro effect on test rats. So, he sets a trap using a broken vial of his blood to lure an unsuspecting Dark Seeker into his wrapped net. He then hauls her back to his basement lab and test out his serum. It starts to work and then fails, so he neutralizes it and puts her into hibernation.
The next day or so, he's out on his routine rounds with Sam when he sees the mannequin he calls Fred from the Video store in front of a building. He thinks he's losing his mind. He yells at the mannequin and then shoots him to pieces. When he approaches the mannequin still wondering who moved him or why, he is ensnared in a similar trap to the one he used himself. Hanging upside down by his leg, the sun is starting to set. When he wakes, to Sam's barking, he cuts himself loose but falls on a sharp object that penetrates his thigh making it hard for him to stand or walk. Just then, a pack of infected dogs and a dark seeker peer out of the shattered window of the building. They try to attack but a band of sun from a crack in some buildings hold them at bay. Sam and Neville try to retreat to the car. The sun gets blocked and the hounds attack. Sam defends Neville brilliantly and bravely. Neville gets a pistol from his car and shoots the infected dogs dead. Sadly, Sam has been bitten and infected. He races home and tries to save her, but she converts to the infected form and he has to mercifully end her life. He goes the next day to bury her, and then to the video store to talk to the mannequin lady he thinks is nice. She ignores, him and he snaps. He drives like a mad man to the South Street Seaport at night and waits for Dark Seekers to find him. He then tries to kill as many with his car as he can before they ultimately attack him in full force and flip his car. He's about to be killed when, by some miracle, happens and he wakes up at home. Turns out that Anna (Alice Braga) and Ethan (Charlie Tahan) have heard is radio broadcast and come to New York to find him. When he wakes up, he cannot accept that they are real. After behaving badly, he starts to warm up to them, but the day is consumed and, unfortunately, though Anna has plans for them all to go to a Safe Colony in Vermont she somehow believes exists even though he's positive she's wrong, the plans have to be put on hold because she wasn't careful in bringing him home and the Dark Seekers followed. Now there are hundreds outside waiting for darkness to attack—which they do. Even though he's planned for this with bombs out side and UV lamps, etc. they use an overwhelming force and eventually get in. The leader of the pack is desperate to attack him. Neville fends off as best he can. Anna and Ethan hide under an end table in an upstairs bedroom. They are nearly captured and killed by a Dark Seeker making a hole in the roof, but Neville arrives in the nick of time to kill him. They rush to the basement, and there they notice that Neville's plan to put the infected woman on ice to increase the effectiveness of the compound seems to actually be working and she's changing, but it's too late. The leader has gotten to the basement with his minions. They are hiding behind a thick wall of Plexi-glass® Neville is sure will protect them, but when the male pounds his head repeatedly against it, it starts to shatter. Neville shoves them into a fire proof, steal door cubby with instructions to leave for Vermont tomorrow. He gives Anna a vial of his blood and explains that it holds the power to cure. He gets out a grenade and blows himself and the attacking Dark Seekers up just as the leader breaks through.
• Anna and Ethan make it safely to the Vermont colony where they are let in.
Something Going On?
• Neville doesn't notice that the trap they use to catch him is exactly the same design as the one he used to ensnare the female Dark Seeker. He doesn't realize that despite the fact he thinks they're not smart and have nothing left of their humanity, they must have been watching him all along to know that the mannequin Fred would be good bait. He also, doesn't seem to figure out what's obvious from the face of the male Dark Seeker leader dude, that he must have kidnapped this dude's soul mate. He's so drive to get her back he'll stop at nothing.

3 comments:

Floria said...

I thought this movie was really good, but there are still some lingering things I'm confused about.

I'm debating whether the trap was left by the Darkseekers or by Neville himself, since it seems he could have been going insane.

Also, did Neville give Anna a vial of his own blood at the end, or that of the Darkseeker girl? Either way, how could that be enough for Anna and the rest of the survivors to figure out the cure?

And what was the significance of the "butterfly" thing at the end, when he had a flashback to his son saying it?

Anyway, thanks for the plot summary!

Anonymous said...

The blood he gives Anna is out of the Dark Seeker lady, he draws it then hands it to her. Also it's his own knife that stabs him in the leg when he falls.

I agree, at one point he claims that they have lost all traces of humanity, this is after the male comes into the light because he traps his mate. Also that they control the dogs that are let loose and set the trap. They knew he would be there, they set the trap.

John Thomas "Kooz" Kuczmarski said...

Surprisingly really liked this film. Sure, it was a near direct copy of 28 days later, but this was MUCH better. When you have little expectations from a movie and then it does a decent to exceptional job, you end up revering the film much more than you would otherwise with monumental expectations. Anyways, what I enjoyed most out of the movie was it's subtle message of how music-love-togetherness is the "cure" for any pandemic, any disease, "disorder", or any problem really. I whole-heartedly believe that in mind body and soul, so hearing it so subtely but "well" conveyed through the constant playing of Bob Marley, was a soothing thematic surprise.

Will smith was great. Solid acting. He got jacked for this movie! He also had to do a bit of a "Castaway" tom-hanks style of acting for most of the movie. The "one man one film" style seems to becoming fairly popular. I like it if the actor is talented. Very different approach to flim.

About the underlying message of the movie. I could be going off on a wild goose chase here but let me know what you think of this: "The cancer cure was an allegorical metaphor of the 9/11 attacks". Think about it. Will Smith's character repeated ATLEAST twice "This is ground zero. This is ground zero". What do most americans think of when they hear that phrase? Exactly, 9/11 attacks. New york city, trade towers. Ground Zero. The fact that the movie was also in NYC made this metaphor even more convincing. Then of course the infected organisms who "devolve and lose their sense of humanity more and more each day" represent the terrorists who also degrade into becoming "less human". In the end it's that "one love" Bob Marley MUSIC and togetherness that cures a mutant virus pandemic, terrorism, darkness -- the whole lot with light. Great movie.