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Dredd 3D (USA 2012) – Judge, Jury & Executioner

In a violent metropolis in the dystopian future, peace-keeping is a job for the cops, who are judge, jury and executioner combined.

Mega City, a vast metropolis of 800 million souls stretching from Boston to DC, is run by gangs and drug lords. Only the Judges, known and feared – and equipped with the latest technology – have the power to keep the lid on crime and Judge Dredd (Karl Urban) is the most feared of all. Masked, helmeted, metal-suited and fully obscured, his latest challenge is ridding the city of its current scourge – a new drug known as “Slo-Mo”, which dramatically slows reality for its users. Every feeling and emotion can be experienced for longer – ecstasy as well as agony.

On the day Dredd is assigned to train Cassandra Anderson (Olivia Thirlby), a new recruit with powerful psychic abilities springing from a genetic mutation, they are summoned to a crime scene at Peach Trees – one of the most violent spots in the city. 200 Stories of savage high-rise slum run by Ma-Ma (Lena Headey), prostitute turned crime boss, and her ruthless gang. A vicious triple-murder has been committed – the bodies, flayed and tossed off the top of the building.

After the dynamic duo captures one of Ma-Ma’s key henchmen (Wood Harris), she manages to over-ride the compound’s security control and puts the high rise into lockdown. No loss of life is too great to protect her empire and the two judges must fight overwhelming odds if they hope to survive.

More blood-thirsty and hard core than the bland 1995 JUDGE DREDD starring Sylvester Stallone, director Pete Travis and screenwriter Alex Garland have ramped up the action and brutality to adapt to these darker times and appeal to a more extreme target group. As a superhero, Dredd has little to commend him to a wider target audience. A man of few words and those in a gruff “Batman” voice, he is hardly allowed to show any humanity or expression – never mind his face – which leaves Thirlby to transport such emotion and sympathy as is to be found in the script. And she does this with a modicum of success. Even more successful to my mind is Lena Headey’s portrayal of arch-villainess Ma-Ma, A sense of profound sadness can be sensed beneath the character’s hard exterior.

But the focus here is on merciless carnage in vivid 3D and a $50 million budget. Blood splatters, bodies are dismembered – much of it in Slo-Mo – a technique I initially found interesting, and then over-used and tedious – all underlaid with a pulsing score by Paul Leonard-Morgan, most of it below the stave. The goodies and the baddies are equally savage, but justice, such as it is in this post-apocalyptic world, wins through.

DREDD 3D (USA 2012); Distributor: Lionsgate Films; US release: 21st Sept/Germany: 15th November; Running time: 96 mins: Director: Pete Travis; Writers: Alex Garland (screenplay), Carlos Ezquerra, John Wagner (characters) Cast: Karl Urban, Olivia thirlby, Lena Heqadey, Carlos Ezquerrs, Wood Harris;Langley Kirkwood ; MPAA Rating: R

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  1. gorenganking

    On November 17, 2012 at 10:36 pm

    good film

  2. Harvey Dent

    On November 18, 2012 at 3:39 pm

    I\’m sorry but while you are entitled to your opinion I don\’t agree with you here. The original Judge Dredd is by far the superior movie. The new Dredd tries to hard to be important and falls short epically. How the over the top special effects earn this a 77% on rotten tomatoes vs the originals 18% I have no idea. The movie is dull, boring and does not stay true to it\’s source material at all. It\’s a complete rip off of \” The Raid\” a movie that came out earlier and is a better action film it\’s self. The Dredd plot is predictably tried and true, rookie cop learns the ropes while out in the field. This has been done before in Hollywood movies so much. Not being able to see Karl Urban sucks , him keeping that mask on the entire movie dehumanizes the character. It makes him feel like a robot, like Robocop or the Terminator. The slow motion is not even new and is stolen from movies like the Resident Evil franchise. A slow moving pace and a hero you can\’t connect with make this a waste of time. I have watched the 1995 film with Stallone several times. \” I am the law\” who doesn\’t remember that line from the movie. I don\’t recall one line from this 2012 remake at all. This is one film I hope doesn\’t have a sequel. The film at best is average with a 5/10, big thumbs down. Just another way for Hollywood to use a established name and the tired 3D gimmick to make money. Adding 3D to movies doesn\’t make it better. 3D has been around forever and is so old.

  3. Andi777

    On November 22, 2012 at 7:51 am

    Nice article, like this

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