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I Am Legend

CritiqueText • At the movies

1964, 1971, 2007, 2007

I Am Legend first editionFirst hardcover edition
By Richard Matheson
Publication details ▽ Publication details △

First publication

Literature form

Science fiction, horror

Writing language

Author's country
United States

Approx. 25,000 words

I Am Omega scene 2007
Mark Dacascos is Omega in a low-budget rip-off of the "I Am Legend" story and the coming big-budget film.

Another last man who isn't

I Am Omega (2007): Director Griff Furst; writer Geoff Meed; featuring Mark Dacascos, Geoff Meed

Let's see. How can we cash in on the zombie craze some years after The Omega Man and before the next official remake, I Am Legend, comes out? I got it. Put those two titles together and call it I Am Omega.

So we don't have to pay for rights to anyone, we'll change the zombie-hunting plot enough, and modify those other movies' taglines, "The last man on Earth is not alone", to "The last man alive must battle a planet of the dead." Moviegoers might be confused enough to come into the theatres or buy the DVD.

Of course, we'll use inexpensive, little-known actors and spend next to nothing on effects.

So the discussion might have gone at the offices of independent film producer The Asylum as they planned their latest low-budget movie rip-off.

Their adaptation of Richard Matheson's story was completely unlicensed and uncredited, but snuck into theatres in 2007 a month before the biggest, splashiest, most expensive movie version of "I am Legend" was released.

And the movie made to cash in on a trend is almost as bad as its cynical origins.

Almost. The first part of the film is on track for something familiar. We're back in zombie-ridden Los Angeles and our hero, named Renchard now, fights the mutants off daily, thinking he might be the last person alive, until he hears from an intriguing young woman who needs his help and who, it turns out, might carry the secret of curing the plague.

You can watch the entire I Am Omega film on YouTube for free—which is still too costly.

But then it goes off the beaten path as Renchard has to join with a couple of other dubious characters to rescue the woman before L.A. is blown up or something. We're strictly into action hero stuff now, much worse and more predictable than Charlton Heston's gun-toting mutant killer in The Omega Man, though the fighting here is mainly manual combat.

Renchard is played by Mark Dacascos, known mainly for his appearance in martial arts films and later to become a recurring character in several popular television series. In his likable way he does whatever he can with the violent role and his terrible co-stars.

But enough about this piece of apocalyptic garbage. Let's go on to the biggest pile.

— Eric


CritiqueText • At the movies

1964, 1971, 2007, 2007

See also:

Robinson Crusoe

I, Robot


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