Star power: will Smith, left, and Rosario Dawson pose together at the premiere that \"Seven Pounds\" in Los Angeles ~ above Tuesday.

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\"Seven Pounds\" opens up with will Smith do a phone call.

\"I need an ambulance,\" that says. \"There's been a suicide.\"

\"Who's the victim?\" asks the 911 operator.

\"I am.\"

Consider this a warning. If you prefer Smith because that his levity and also charm, skip this movie. The location \"Seven Pounds\" refers to the shakespearean pound-of-flesh metaphor, definition a figurative debt that requirements to be paid back. Blacksmith plays Ben Thomas, a male who feel the need to do good things in order to compensate because that a tragic past event.If you're frustrated by my vagueness, keep in mind this film plays that cards close to the vest, lest the gimmick behind Ben's pseudo-karmic trip be too shortly revealed. We deserve to only watch as he engages in non-specific dialogue v close girlfriend Dan (Barry Pepper) about a setup being implemented and also wonder why Ben functions so hard to stop his brother (Michael Ealy).

2.5 out OF 4 STARS

'Seven Pounds'

Rated: PG-13 because that thematic material, some disturbing content, a step of sensuality

Cast: will Smith, Rosario Dawson, Woody Harrelson, Barry Pepper

Director: Gabriele Muccino

Run time: 123 minutes

It's apparent this is a male with a most baggage, and also we get the feeling he's attempting to be an earthly angel -- or, together the opening lines suggest, a sacrificial lamb. Odds are, he's no a creepy stalker through dastardly intentions, otherwise the wouldn't be play by will certainly Smith, America's movie-star sweetheart, or the subject of a mainstream movie released during the vacation season.

We watch Ben flashing a large smile and an IRS badge so that can get into strangers' houses, and then proceeds to channel mar Worth, asking them intensely an individual questions and also meddling v their lives. He's looking for great people with, us assume, serious medical conditions, due to the fact that he hangs about hospitals and retirement homes. Most notably, there's a remote pianist/telephone customer-service rep Ezra (Woody Harrelson), and a beautiful graphic designer through a debilitating cardiac condition, Emily (Rosario Dawson).

It's in ~ the heavy-handed nature of this film the the woman v the literally damaged heart will certainly be the topic of Ben's romantic attention -- and follows Hollywood protocol that the two most attractive human being in the movie must fall in love. Emily is top top the transplant list and also can barely walk her monster that a great Dane there is no collapsing. You'd think sex would be verboten, but we're not supposed to ask the question.

The difficulty isn't blacksmith or Dawson, who exhibit some palpable chemistry, and give performances sincere sufficient to stave off our alienation. But they're forced to slog with a relentlessly maudlin dirt bog that a screenplay that forces \"Seven Pounds\" come a crawl. Ben's life together we experience it is utterly there is no of humor or also feel-good sentiment. Rather, his story grabs your heartstrings, then proceeds come extract the entire organ through a hearty yank. Probably this traction of a bummer the a downer that a movie should have actually been called \"Seven Tons,\" due to the fact that it certain feels choose it.

E-mail man Serba: jserba

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