Seven Pounds was a confusing title when I first heard of this film. Does it mean seven pounds of fat? Seven British pounds? Does the heart weigh 7 lbs? Does Will Smith’s pinky muscle lift 7 lbs? No. It’s actually none of the above. Seven Pounds is a heartfelt story about loss, love, tragedy, fear and atonement. (Spoilers ahead- so do not read this if you really don’t want a big spill).
Will Smith and Rosario Dawson were on Oprah discussing everything but the real details of the plot for a reason. If you discuss the plot it may ruin the entire premise of the film for the viewer. The film is wrapped delicately in colored ribbons that are best unwrapped in the film’s tailored sequence.
Will Smith killed 7 people in a tragic accident including his fiance. You get the feeling he was rich, well cultured and balanced before the accident. Everything was on the right track as they say. When a slight shift in plans careens his car into oncoming traffic, a suburban full of people is destroyed in just a minute. One Minute. One minute has changed Will Smith forever.
What I enjoyed about the film was how I didn’t know this was the reason for his atonement and choice to help 7 strangers for a while. Remember, I didn’t watch much before the film and it’s filmed in such a way to hide the real reason for 75% of it. So in that regard, this was surprising. I kept thinking maybe Will Smith came into a lot of money, maybe he was an angel from heaven or perhaps some other metaphysical entity. Nope….He simply feels that he is a terrible human being who deserves pain and needs to help others before he dies.
What’s even more powerful about the film is Will Smith’s acting-specifically his ability to make you truly feel pained, confused, angered, guilty and happy all at the same time. You don’t quite understand why he has all of these feelings when he’s helping people, but he does. For most of it, you have no idea exactly WHY Will Smith is the way he is.
When details are revealed of the crash, it becomes abundantly clear that Will Smith really did a phenomenal job at keeping you locked in.
As he was giving and helping people his life started to go back to normal. This is the most powerful part of this film and what Will Smith displays brilliantly in his acting. He was falling in love and as he put it “I haven’t treated myself well in the past 3 years”..to which Rosario responds, “Well you should start”.
Will Smith has spent around 3 years since the accident researching people whom he should help. He’s not going to help just anyone but the most beautiful deserving people. One night he gives his bone marrow to a dying little boy. A year prior he gave part of his liver to a woman named Holly – a social worker for the state. He gave his brother one of his lungs. He gives his house to a battered woman and her kids. Now, we enter upon his story as a blind man and a woman with a heart condition are the two main focuses of Smith’s retrobution illness.
Now, I knew the blind man’s story was going to become the pivotal ending for the film —who wouldn’t? But…despite the cliche of that ending– I still loved it. Played by Woody Harrelson, the blind man is an essential component to the love factor.
The love story with Rosario Dawson is intense and poignant because she’s going to die without his heart. She doesn’t ever consider him as a donor in fact, she’s falling in love with him and only wants a miracle to happen so she can be with him forever. This is the moment Will Smith knew would be the most awful, derailing, wonderful, heroic moment of his life. Hhe has to give up his main organ in order to truly release his pain and the deceased victims he killed. He doesn’t want to though. He finally found something good in his life and now this??
Do these acts really atone for his mistakes? Yes..they do. They do ten fold and it makes you really think.
He’s going through more pain for longer than any of his victims had. It makes you think about how you’d feel in his shoes. It makes you think about how the victims are probably up in heaven saying “You don’t have to do this”. It makes you ask yourself if you’d be strong enough to really help people like he is. It makes you question if you could live with that kind of pain that he is living with daily. It makes you think twice about drunk driving. Don’t text in the car.
What happens at the end of the film was gut wrenching, awesome, spiritual, and shocking. Go see the film to see what happens in the end. It’s not going to be the most wonderful film in the world-= but it makes you think and you’ll be discussing it for WEEKS after. I heard Will Smith say he did this film because of the way it makes you think and feel for a long time after. I think everyone should understand and be willing to take a couple hours to see what SEVEN POUNDS can deliver in your life.
Seven organs, seven strangers, seven pounds of flesh..