The Omega Man

Year: 1971

Production: Warner Bros.

Director: Boris Sagal

Starring: Charlton Heston, Anthony Zerbe, Rosalind Cash

Screenwriter: John William, Joyce Hopper Corrington

Based on I Am Legend (1954) by Richard Matheson

98 minutes; Color


This is the second film version of Matheson's ultra-paranoia novel, the first being The Last Man on Earth (1964). "The first one was very poorly done, " said Matheson, himself a screenwriter, "but it did follow the book. The Omega Man bore no resemblance to my book ... I had absolutely nothing to do with the screenplay." A survivor of a biological war battles (with a machine gun rather than Matheson's sharpened stakes) against a group of mutated, albino fanatics hunting the almost dead city. The film sacrifices the claustrophobia and nightmare of the novel for fast-moving action. The true cinematic heir to Matheson's story, though not directly based on it, is the far superior Night of the Living Dead (1968).

The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction

Related links:
Classic Science Fiction Reviews at scifi.com


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