I Am Legend - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

I Am Legend Reviews

Top Critic
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out
November 17, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Calvin Wilson
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
October 18, 2008
Smith turns in a terrific performance, nailing Neville's angst while allowing room for humor.
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Bob Mondello
NPR.org
October 18, 2008
When they do, banging their heads against plate glass as movie zombies always do, I started needing something else to think about.
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David Ansen
Newsweek
March 31, 2008
I wouldn't dream of giving away the ending, but it's not likely to satisfy either the action crowd or Matheson fans.
Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
January 4, 2008
I Am Legend is a grenade that goes off when least expected. It has more horror than heart, but it is never boring.
Top Critic
Tom Charity
CNN.com
January 4, 2008
So often, sci-fi is overproduced, but I Am Legend doesn't look like a CGI extravaganza. It looks like an edgy suspense movie shot on the fly in New York City after the fall. And because of that, it's all the more effective.
Top Critic
Nigel Floyd
Time Out
December 28, 2007
You're left gawping at $100 million-worth of eye-popping futuristic B-movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
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Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
December 17, 2007
Will Smith is in prime form.
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
December 14, 2007
The herky-jerky script, by Mark Protosevich and Akiva Goldsman, favors vignettes and set pieces over dramatic development, and those damned zombies are everywhere, overwhelming the proceedings with their slobbering and howling.
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Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
December 14, 2007
I Am Legend is a blockbuster like no other, one that finds its grandness in modesty. It's a star vehicle with a star who knows his place in the universe.
Top Critic
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
December 14, 2007
I Am Legend is actually about the last man on earth played by one of the last real movie stars on earth.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
December 14, 2007
The movie works well while it's running, although it raises questions that later only mutate in our minds.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
December 14, 2007
I admire the intent of Mr. Smith, who has made it his mission to mix escapist fare with socially relevant material. Legend seems to split the difference and land in the middle of nowhere. That's a lonely place for moviegoers to be.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
December 14, 2007
What should be shattering is often merely intriguing.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
December 14, 2007
After its promising opening, I Am Legend devolves into a generic zombie slaughterfest, highly reminiscent of Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later and its sequel 28 Weeks Later.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
December 14, 2007
Lawrence's direction is patient, solid and suspenseful, and his vision of a lone fellow wandering through the atavistic hulk of Manhattan yields an indelible portrait of post-cataclysmic solitude.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Carina Chocano
Los Angeles Times
December 14, 2007
It doesn't serve I Am Legend to give you too much time to think. Better when it's galloping forward at top speed, dodging caribou and translucent zombies and putting the dog in peril.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
December 14, 2007
For horror fans, Halloween came a little later than usual this year, but it was worth the wait.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
December 14, 2007
The Manhattan movie of the year, Francis Lawrence's I Am Legend, offers a stunning glimpse into how the city -- as we know it today -- might look in 2012 if it were abandoned in 2009.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Kyle Smith
New York Post
December 14, 2007
Is going to be bigger than crucifix sales on Judgment Day. Scary, inventive, exciting and breathless adventure.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
December 14, 2007
The vampires aren't a particularly inspiring creation -- all pale and hairless and red-eyed -- but director Francis Lawrence gets some great effects out of New York itself.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Walter V. Addiego
San Francisco Chronicle
December 14, 2007
[Director] Lawrence is pretty good at the spectacular stuff. And he's smart enough to let Smith be Smith. But there's only so much you can do with CGI monsters that don't seem right for this kind of sci-fi scenario.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
December 14, 2007
It's in the last half-hour that I Am Legend imports new elements that both propel the story to its explosive climax and just aren't as compelling as the day-in-the-life story that preceded it.
Top Critic
Claudia Puig
USA Today
December 14, 2007
[Smith's] powerful performance is not enough to save the movie -- initially a potent meditation on loneliness and an absorbing doomsday action movie -- from taking a wrong turn and never getting back on track.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
December 14, 2007
'Nothing worked the way it was supposed to work!' Will Smith rages from his solitary hell in I Am Legend, yet this remarkable sci-fi thriller works a lot better than anyone could have expected.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
December 14, 2007
For most of the way it's starker (even with the comic relief) and more eerie in its atmospherics than the usual big-budget monster.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Mark Rahner
Seattle Times
December 13, 2007
It looks like poor old Richard Matheson will go to his grave without ever seeing a movie that does justice to his great 1954 novel, I Am Legend.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
December 13, 2007
Director Francis Lawrence makes eerie, effective use of New York City locations drained of human activity, shooting them for maximum anxiety and agoraphobia.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
A.O. Scott
New York Times
December 13, 2007
In spite of its third-act collapse into obviousness and sentimentality, I Am Legend is among Will Smith's better movies.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
December 13, 2007
Big Willie has no problem holding the screen. In fact, trouble enters only when the script overcomplicates things in the end. Until then, especially in a growling dogfight, director Francis Lawrence keeps you squirming.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
December 13, 2007
In the end, this is a sci-fi zombie movie, folks.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Jan Stuart
Newsday
December 13, 2007
Most everything in I Am Legend feels lifted from elsewhere.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
December 13, 2007
It's almost as if the filmmakers wanted to say something about isolation, and loneliness, in the urban environment. Almost.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
December 13, 2007
Instead of maintaining its edgy sense of constant discomfort, the movie is compelled to make Neville as fuzzily adorable and messianic as possible.
Top Critic
Dana Stevens
Slate
December 13, 2007
A big part of the reason for this movie's nose dive around the one-hour mark is that, seen up close, the Infected just aren't that scary.
Top Critic
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
December 13, 2007
I Am Legend is carried for a long while on the strength of Smith's performance, but even he can carry it only so far.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
John Monaghan
Detroit Free Press
December 13, 2007
All the effort that went into the spectacle of destroying Manhattan in flashbacks could have been better spent on developing the claustrophobic, creepy present.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Adam Graham
Detroit News
December 13, 2007
Smith is worth watching; the movie is not.
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
December 13, 2007
This can't-miss concept, in development for decades, was done first and done better in 28 Days Later.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
December 13, 2007
The popcorn elements are well handled, but what lingers is the sense of urban despair.
Top Critic
Scott Foundas
Village Voice
December 13, 2007
If, as a movie, I Am Legend is less stylistically mind blowing and intellectually ambitious than last year's Yuletide dystopia, Children of Men, it's not far off.
Top Critic
Bruce Newman
San Jose Mercury News
December 12, 2007
Even with Smith acting up a storm, what starts out as a potentially fascinating picture about an apocalyptic plague soon devolves into yet another special-effects laden zombie movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Tasha Robinson
AV Club
December 12, 2007
Reasonably absorbing.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
December 12, 2007
...The film is well-done, a case of suspenseful competence trumping questionable relevance.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
December 12, 2007
I Am Legend turns from a quiet meditation on the nature of humanity into a B-movie schlockfest.
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
December 12, 2007
Smith nails the portrayal. It's not the kind of work that will earn him an Oscar nomination but audiences usually don't see better than this in genre films.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
December 10, 2007
The first two thirds and change of I Am Legend is terrific mindless fun: crackerjack action with gnashing vampires barely glimpsed (and scarier for that) and how'd-they-do-that New York locations that retroactively justify the traffic jams.
Top Critic
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
December 7, 2007
The film can never quite decide whether it's speculative fiction or a B-movie horror show. It's not a fatal flaw, though.
Top Critic
Todd McCarthy
Variety
December 7, 2007
Remarkably eerie yet annoyingly larded with cheap horror-film shock effects.