Disappointing, Soul less, Remake, 12 January 2008
Author: gary-444 from United Kingdom
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Sometimes a good story, a big budget, and a hot leading actor is not enough, as this retread of “The Omega Man ” demonstrates.
As a straight story, it is OK. But the good bits are lifted from the original, and the 21st Century reinterpretations are flat.The title itself is pretentious, bordering on the preposterous, and the rest of the picture largely follows suit.
Largely played as a single hander, Will Smith plays the part of Dr Robert Neville convincingly enough. The fact that his dog Doesn’t survive is a nice twist on accepted disaster movie convention.His pre occupation with Bob Marleys redemptive aspirations are a pale echo of the Woodstock film at the start of the “Omega Man”.
In the original the mutants have a role, and a leader, and are far more powerful for it. This time round they are lifted straight out of Lord of the Rings / The descent/ The Cave, and whilst offering shock value deny the script dramatic tension. In 1971, you could forgive the formulaic and one dimensional part written for the female companion he comes across, in 2008 it is unforgivable, and part of a headlong rush in the last quarter to wrap things up as quickly 9and unconvincingly) as possible.
Neville’s flashbacks add little to the story and could easily have been sacrificed in favour of more body for both the mutants, and the girl.Francis lawrence, director, has a background in TV and video, it shows, and ultimately he is out of his depth with this effort.