Sunday, March 10, 2013
MOVIE REVIEW: DREDD
A feared urban cop takes on a vicious city drug dealer in a futuristic metropolis as director Pete Travis (Vantage Point) and screenwriter Alex Garland (28 Days Later, Sunshine) team to bring iconic 2000A.D. lawman Judge Dredd to the big screen. In the future, much of North America has been poisoned by radiation. The sprawling urban jungle Mega City One stretches from Boston to Washington D.C., and in order to keep the growing criminal element in check, police enforcers called "Judges" have been given the power of judge, jury, and executioner. Judge Dredd (Karl Urban) is the most feared of them all, delivering death sentences with impunity as he fights to rid the streets of "Slo-Mo" -- a powerful new drug that alters its user's perception of time. In the process of training psychic rookie Cassandra Anderson (Olivia Thirlby), Dredd receives a report of an incident in a sprawling criminal stronghold ruled by fearsome drug lord Ma-Ma (Lena Headey), and ventures in to investigate. Upon learning that one of her top men has been captured by Dredd shortly thereafter, an enraged Ma-Ma seizes control of her massive 200-story complex, launching an all-out war against the Judges as Dredd and Cassandra find themselves trapped in the belly of the beast. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi
Director: Pete Travis
Cast: Karl Urban, Olivia Thirlby, Lena Headey, Wood Harris, Langley Kirkwood
Release Date: Sep 21, 2012
Rated R for strong bloody violence, language, drug use and some sexual content
Runtime: 1 hr. 36 min.
Genres: Action/Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Taking another shot at a character that’s best remembered for a laughably bad Sylvester Stallone film takes some guts. Dredd isn’t necessarily a film that anybody asked for or wanted and the fact that it was mostly ignored by the movie going audience kind of rams that point home. It’s a bit of a shame because Pete Travis’s version is actually a solid piece of R rated action fun. He fully embraces the splatter factor delivering a series of visual punches in the face. Along the way he delivers some of the best looking use of slow mo to visually represent the effects of the drug in question. The plot is incredibly thin and you could probably watch it while doing something else and you’d miss absolutely nothing and still enjoy the gory spectacle. Character development is sparse and we don’t know much about the titular Dredd. Karl Urban, helmet on for the duration, gives a gravelly chin driven performance that’s impressive but your left wondering what’d he done if he’d been given a little more meat. Olivia Thirlby is equally one note with a slightly more fleshed out character. Lena Headley, as the lead baddie, isn’t asked to do much outside of having constant bitch face; thankfully she was born with that talent. While it sounds like the film is flimsy, which it is, it’s also a lot of fun for all the action thrown at you.