Feeds

back to article Dredd movie review

I haven't seen The Raid, the skirmish-in-a-skyscraper flick so many Dredd reviewers have compared with this latest attempt to bring 2000AD's favourite anti-hero to the big screen. But I have been reading the comic on and off since 1977 - more on than off; it went a bit crap in the 1990s - and Judge Dredd remains a weekly joy, …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.

Page:

Stop

Fair enough

I'm still hopeful for it. I think their main limitation is the budget of $40 million, not a lot you can do with that so they tried to do it in a district 9 grimy type thing from what I understand. Also, from the other reviews the views of MC1 are very much restricted to one setting which would leave the way to advance other sectors and blocks. It needs sequels just because Garland wants to do Chopper/Satanus/the Angels for a second and for a third the Dark Judges.

And btw, the ONLY thing good about the Danny Cannon version was the appearance of Hammerstein and that was purely as he looked awesome.

3
0
Pirate

Re: Fair enough

The criiiime issssss Ssssstallone...the sssentence isss deathhhh...

Skull, well, because it was the closest...

0
0
Silver badge

Re: Fair enough

I may well see it, but was hoping for a more colourful MegaCity One, like Blade Runner warmed up, or with a touch of Luc Beson's The Fifth Element... like a Brazillian favela made vertical. Ideally though, they would have made it in the nineties with Clint Eastwood instead of Stallone.

In this new movie, Karl Urban looks more like Mad Max than he does a Judge with leathers so polished he could make a drill sergeant weep with shame.

Hmm... Judge Dredd Vs Mad Max might even work... you can imagine Dredd's mutant-infested wastelands playing host to a Road Warrior type character.

1
0
Bronze badge
Mushroom

Gah. Oh well.

For me they have to make a better stab at recreating the visual style of a comic when adapting for film.

MC1 is an insane, futuristic, silly place even at its grittiest - if they don't have the budget to recreate all that I'd rather they didn't bother.

An animated version would be better - but although they seem to have got the idea that comic books (or graphic novels or whatever you want to call them) are not just for kids it seems that in the US animation is still a juve medium.

I'll watch this film but I'd almost rather it wasn't even trying to be Dredd.

1
0

i guessed as much from the trailer

as soon as i seen the trialer i was disapointed. it looks too real. dredd is ment to be OTT.

The stallone version may have been rubbish, but it got the look right. this clearly is an action movie, with dredd thrown in.

bit of a shame really. dredd could be a good film

6
0
Thumb Up

Prelude

Being a Dredd fan since 2000ADs release, I was yes disappointed that the backdrops were not future mega city one and that this was just shortly after the nuclear apoclypse and rebuild. Once I planted that seed in my head then I settled down.

It also means that if there is a Dredd II, fingers crossed, it can lift the game and introduced the fancy polished future of the comic book rather than banging its head against the edge of the bubble and then doing a reboot like a lot of the other comic characthers have had to do. And as Dredd does not remove his helmet (Hurrah!) the legend can run on.

As it is its early Judges in battered uniforms until 'The Law' can generally be established, before the tidy up to furture mega city can begin. The the film was upper okay to good. The grit was there, the fight for the streets was there and the fight to pull back from a totally drug addled future was there.

In fact if you watched this first and then watched the Stallone version you could (I say this loosely) take a veiw that the Stallone one followed on and whatever the next Dredd movie is (Hopefully introduce Judge Death and his crew) would be volume three with an even more futuristic backdrop.

So in all everything to enjoy and a lot to look forward too.

Btw was anyone else looking for the little jocky wheel on the front of the fatty.

3
0
Happy

Re: Prelude

I've not seen it yet, but you know, I rather like your positioning of it; I can see how it can make sense and allow me to enjoy it as the no-brainer flick it appears to be, without whining to the missus about how "that's not true to the comic"

Which can only be good news for both of us!

But bloody hell, wouldn't a proper fan version of Dredd be fecking awesome?!

0
0
Silver badge
Thumb Down

Not the right setting, not the right uniforms, not the right perps... sounds bloody awful. Dredd should go round and arrest the cast and crew for crimes against 2000AD.

1
2
Anonymous Coward

...if only

You'd actually watched it before commenting.

0
0

If only...

...We could splice the Stallone film's look to this storyline, we'd be a lot closer.

1
0

It's ...

... got to e better than that shite wit Stallone in it.

1
0
Angel

Re: It's ...

May be... But I still have the sudden urge to watch the stallone Edition...

0
0

This post has been deleted by its author

That ain't Cassandra!!!

They've seriously fcked up on the casting of Judge Anderson ; her snotty little brat sister possibly, but that is NOT the Cassandra Anderson from the comics. Not even close.

The Lawmasters look wrong too, all fairings - another example of the film trying too hard to relate to us in the here and now?

Still, at least he keeps his 'at on!

</gripe>

3
0
Anonymous Coward

essence of Dredd

what I'm hoping for in a Dredd movie.

Satire

Skyscraping housing named after middle-ranking celebrities and fictional characters

Shoulderpads

Summary justice for quirky crimes

I can wait a bit longer, in the meantime perhaps a visit to Amazon for a collection of early stories.....

2
0
Silver badge
FAIL

Optional

"You won't miss out waiting for the 2D version."

AFAIK, the 2D version is only getting a limited run - this is being primarily marketed as a 3D film.

My local cinema isn't one of those that will be showing it in 2D, and I'm not willing to travel to the nearest venue that will. I want to see it, but not that much.

0
0

Re: Optional

DVD will be your friend....

0
0
Silver badge

Re: Optional

"DVD will be your friend...."

Indeed - that or Blu-Ray - when I see it at a suitably reduced price. It could be quite a wait.

0
0
Silver badge

Re: Optional

Watch it with 2D specs

0
0
Silver badge

Dredd 3D

When they put 3D in the film's title it made me wary of it.

So many films have been pushed out using '3D' in the title as some 'turd polish'. Anyone who has seen 'The Hole 3D' would agree.

So, when I heard the film was coming out I got excited. Then they said its title at the end and I got all sad inside.

2
0

Re: Dredd 3D

I abhor 3D but think your example of The Hole is unfair. At least, being a children's film, it was widely screened in 2D. It was also one of the best horror films that year. It may have had a gloss of 3D turd deglossing it but is was not a turd that had been polished, iyswim.

As to Dredd, every 2D screening (only one screening per day!) was sold out. Despite this the cinema stopped showing the film after one week. 3D version still being shown. Whether it is the distributors or cinema that is responsible I don't care. It is bonkers.

Oh well. At least it was possible to see it in twod. Most 18/15 genre films are not given that small break (Underworld, Resident Evil, Piranha, Fright Night).

0
0

Peckham

I didnt even realise Peckham was a real place that existed outside of "Only Fools and Horses" . Now ill be travelling 1 1/2 hours across London to get to a 2d showing of dread. Drokk this 3D nightmare

6
0
TRT
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Peckham

Ha ha! When I started reading this comment, I thought you were likening the new MC1 to Peckham!

4
0

Re: Peckham

As in the Peckham Multiplex? Ha. That's my local. You're in for a treat. Be warned, patrons of the 'Plex tend to enjoy shouting along at the screen. As in, proper shouting. Especially during any quiet bits (I noticed they were showing The Artist there, so god knows what that must have been like).

I haven't been for years as I found the interaction quite grating after a while (although seeing Mean Girls on a matinee viewing was a laugh). It used to be £3 for any film, any time, which made the experience bearable. But since the price went up to a fiver I now opt to get the bus to the hoighty toighty Greenwich Picture House instead.

0
0
Bronze badge
Thumb Down

This ain't Dredd

It's a pale imitation of. I preferred the Stallone version even though Stallone took his helmet off and had the wrong voice. At least it was futuristic and loyal to the look and feel of the comic strips (the only notable exception being the lack of eagle shoulder pads).

I thought the 3D detracted from the movie too.

2
3
TRT
Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: This ain't Dredd

The look of the Stallone one was much better than the stills and clips of this that I've seen so far. I had the good fortune to "meet" the big robot from the Stallone film at a launch event in Levesden studios (along with the Alien Queen, Darth Vader, the Aliens APC etc...) Anyway, the robot and the GM judges and all of that... too much in one film, too much of a departure from the old 70s/80s Dredd I read at boarding school...

2
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: This ain't Dredd

> ... from the old 70s/80s Dredd I read at boarding school...

That made me smile - it's exactly the same scenario in my head: early 80s (so I'm 10), a rainy Sunday afternoon (nothing open back then), sat around the TV room with a radio playing "Tainted Love" and all of us quietly reading 2000AD. Those were probably my happiest days at boarding school!

0
0
Mushroom

Re: This ain't Dredd

No no no. The Stallone film is a massive pile of arse. There is one shot right at the end with him on his lawmaster which I will concede looks great, but the rest of the film is a massive pile of shit. The scenes with Stallone and Armand Assante are laughable, the plot takes half a dozen stories from the comic and then grinds them in a pestle, tips the ground contents into a bucket and repeatedly pisses and shits on them.

HE TAKES HIS HELMET OFF.

The uniform is like something the Mega City Village People would wear (shortly before being arrested on JIMP charges) and Stallone has a different uniform to every other judge. The scene where they reconstruct a photograph from FUCK-ALL. Rob fucking Schneider.

Also, flying Lawmasters? Fuck off.

0
1
Silver badge

Re: This ain't Dredd

Rob fucking Schneider

I quite like the talented Mr Schneider, although not in this film. I think this says more about me than anything else though.

0
0

I thought the Stallone one was ok, they got the look right and it was enjoyable enough as an action flick.

Personally, I would have liked to see Arnie in the role, I think he had/has the presence to pull it off.

Imagine him in terminator or commando mode, throwing a few choice quips as he despatches perps.

The lead in this one just isnt imposing enough to be dredd, and the whole thing looks quite forgettable to be honest.

1
1
Coat

It had to be said

Mostly Dredd-ful.

0
0

Not a fan film?

Think you'll find that the 100 or so fans some of what people would derogatorily call fan boys were at an advance screening and we thought it was a great fan film.

Not to go through all of your points I will say that sat in the row behind me was John Wagner & Carlos Ezquerra who created Judge Dredd and they whole heatedly approved of the movie.

If its good enough for a very positive response from the man who has written most of the Dredd stories for 35 years then that recommendation should make any Dredd fan want to go and see this movie.

2
1
Anonymous Coward

Well of course they approved

They got paid one heck of a lot, and almost certainly a percentage on top, in order to get that approval.

Nobody sells the rights to something and then publicly says "It's a bit rubbish", at least not while it's still in cinemas.

2
2

Re: Well of course they approved

Dredd is owned by Rebellion and both John & Carlos make no money from the film adaptation of Dredd.

0
1

I also liked the 90s Dredd film

For me it was ruined more by the continuity errors than any other criticisms I had at the time.

1
0

Could work as a prelude

This could work fine if it was used as an intro, ie Dredd isn't yet the man in charge. This gives them time to bring in the proper uniform etc and age the character. (and hopefully do the Dark Judges storyline)

0
0
Coat

so no big crushy robot?

Well that's disappointing, if it's just an attempt at doing TRR with a splash of cashing in on a comic book thrown in there... sounds dismal. TRR didn't need a franchise to sell and by the sounds of it, this does. Pity.

0
1
Silver badge
FAIL

"it's just an attempt at doing TRR with a splash of cashing in on a comic book"

Except the two films were in production simultaneously. In fact, the director of The Raid is on record as saying that he saw the script for Dredd during filming his own movie and immediately thought that he'd have to get his own movie out first to avoid being on the other end of the comparison.

As for "cashing in on a comic book", Dredd doesn't have the brand recognition to make any kind of cash-in work. With the exception of Batman, Superman and Spider-Man virtually no comic character does.

0
0
Coat

Disappointing

I KNEW you were going to say that

0
0
Mushroom

Brilliant

I'm a 2000AD fan and totally despised Stallone's attempt. Mega City is a dystopia, and Judges are outnumbered, so how would you portray the world? The gritty, grotty dystopia portrayed in this film fits the bill perfectly as the gaudy shiny happy things that make other SF totally fail in my opinion, and makes them look, quite frankly, terrible. The film provides a perfect setting of Mega City One. Sure there could be a few more notions of 'future' put in, but that's just a matter of budget and in reality don't add anything meaningful to a film other than opportunities for product placement.

Yes, there are some things I would have made better. Dredd's bike could be a bit more of a monster - some hybrid of a Harley Davidson and the Batman Tumbler batbike minus the ridiculous gold trimmings in the comic would have been much more awesome than the Japanese tin that was used in the film. The lawgiver also didn't look mean enough to dish out Dredd law. That said, the crappy eagle and chain on the judge's uniform being removed and his general look to a more practical flak jacket, is actually worthwhile - even in the comic it looks unrealistic, unwieldy and crap. Similarly with the battle scarred helmet and dusty uniform just adds to how Judges are fighting a never ending battle - so I think 2012 Dredd makes him look better, more realistic and more potent as a result.

My view is that a lot of the aspects of the comic were well placed, and well thought out too, from the chopper posters, to the portrayal of fatties and so forth. The story didn't really lend itself to telling the story of Mega City, so only parting shots were shown to allow the viewers to concentrate on what's happening in the block. Tony Smith's view that Garland has pared down Dredd to any commando tough cop is ridiculous. What is Dredd other than the epitome of exactly that? The one liners were delivered, without being made into the climax of a ridiculous set piece as are cliches epitomised by Bond. Dredd delivers one liners in the dry, laconic and as a matter of fact manner we know and love, and that portrays his personality better as a result. The ending of the film is also typical Dredd: to paraphrase not to ruin it 'just another day in the office, ma'am' - short, sharp, succinct and 100% pure unadulterated Dredd.

Anderson's portrayal is admirable too. A slightly more fragile judge with a different take on the law than Dredd is apparent, and quite frankly great even though somewhat different (better IMO) than the comic. From the visit into the mind to the 'wait' sequence, she develops in the film from a fragile no-hoper to a deliciously mean mind fucker, and in the process begins to overrule Dredd 'He's a victim, not a perp'. Naturally Dredd mostly gets his way (third option: attack) that any other Judge wouldn't logically choose and only Dredd would, could and does.

As a big fan of Drive, the artistic breaks shown in the slo-mo sequences were brilliant to give the viewer a totally unexpected, beautiful and welcome break from the relentlessness of the film. The director kept it tight and sweet without any lingering, yet in the process the artistic violence makes John Woo's best look like Bambi. The story is deeper than a simple take the block, but the fact it is so tight and doesn't linger too long in back stories that will only confuse non-Dredd readers leaves it open to make Dredd the franchise that he deserves. That said, the story is complete, with plenty of points of views to keep it interesting. Garland has made a story that isn't Garland-esque and generally slow and boring, but genuine and relentless.

Again, I disagree with Tony Smith - this film has not been made for the mass market at all. You have to like violence and gore. You have to appreciate Dredd is a cornier toon than Dirty Harry. You have to appreciate beautiful cinematography and you have to be able to think outside of the comic and into an original perception of Dredd's world if your a fan. But I think it's all done so brilliantly, it's actually in my view, an even more gritty and realistic view of Dredd's world than the comic.

Lastly Karl Urban's intimate knowledge having grown up himself reading Dredd does give the character the treatment he deserves. In fact, as an actor he's got into Dredd's carcass so well this is an award-winning performance - you don't really need to say more than that. He never takes the helmet off apart from the aforementioned shadow shot where he's putting it on. The chin, the voice, the grimace and Dredd's single minded 'Justice' and dryness is all perfect.

So no, Tony, I totally disagree with your critique. Justice has finally been done on film to the ultimate law giver. It's gritty, relentless, beautiful and makes absolutely bugger all attempt to appease itself to the mass market by fully embracing the violence and gore deserving an 18. It is so unexpectedly good and so astonishingly exceeding my expectations it really is fantastic.

Lets hope something similar will be done to my personal favourite 2000AD character: Rogue Trooper.

5
2
Silver badge

Re: Brilliant

1. Thanks for your review. I will now happily go see this film (in 2D).

2. Agreed about Rogue Trooper, provided it's the second Rogue Trooper.

0
0
Thumb Down

Nah sorry diluted to extreme,...

no ethical dilemmas, Robocop was a better R rated movie. (and not even R), I dig the slo-mo but the motivation to keep the perp alive was paper-thin, and the social satire was totally gone. Enjoyed the graffitti (Chopper, Kenny Who?) and other oblique references (Blocks named after authors or characters) but not the dystopia I imagined. At least Stallones had value for kitsch (think "Flash Gordon") The first 2/3 were OK, the last 1/3 was weak as.

I shudder to think what they would do with Halo Jones.

2
0
Thumb Up

Re: Nah sorry diluted to extreme,...

I haven't seen the film yet, but +1 for mentioning Halo Jones on a dull Monday morning.

0
0
Bronze badge
FAIL

What a shambles.

The 1995 Sylvester Stallone movie was actually not bad and had a lot of the style and memorable characters from the comic script, however it didn't show the other wild stuff; this film could have done that, however it sounds like they dropped the ball big time, with a pale imitation of Judge Dredd. Why did they even bother!?

2
1

Watched it last night in 3D

And it was actually pretty good.

Major pros are that there is very little obvious CGI other than the slo-mo bits you see in the trailer.

The 3d isn't over the top, in fact by the end I hardly noticed it.

Anderson's powers aren't ridiculously over the top, or used as deus ex machina in the film.

Loads and loads of scope to do more films following this one, and develop MC1 and the characters further.

In fact, I think that the 7ish that it got in imdb and rotten tomatoes was largely deserved.

Post Batman, comic book film = dark and gritty, or alternatively do an Avengers style movie. After the previous Dredd movie got panned so hard, it was inevitable which way this one was going to go.

Very disappointed to see so many comments slagging this off from people who readily admit they haven't actually seen it. I thought el reg readers were more cynical than to fall for that one

Go, because you should see this. And fingers crossed there will be a sequel

1
1
Thumb Up

It JUST CANT be Dredd without big Shoulder-pads and flying cars!

How right youare Sir!--Except for the 3D which was nice to look at, there is almost nothing to recommend it -apart from some excellent cinematography and the choice of actors- but that aside, what honestly is there about this story that’s even half-way related to the Dredd we know and love, eh? except maybe his helmet, and perhaps the way he talks and also moves and quite a lot of the things he does?

But, apart from: the cinematography/casting/the-way-Dredd,-looks,-sounds,-moves-and-behaves,- there is nothing of merit for the fan or the casual viewer,

unless you count the powerful and relatable character-arc that Anderson goes through, the brilliantly-realised bent Judges and of course Lena Headey ( but that doesn’t count because she’s brilliant in everything, isn’t she?).

But, if you leave out all that,- then what is left, except a more-or-less typical, gory, action flick with an engaging premise which is so utterly uncompromising in execution that it powerfully llustrates exactly how lame and safe the rest of the genre has become? That’s what you’re left with, isn’t it?

"What’s wrong with a Dredd film that’s a ‘gory, action flick with an engaging premise which is so utterly uncompromising in execution that it powerfully llustrates exactly how lame and safe the rest of the genre has become?’"..you say?

Well clearly this reviewer knows what’s wrong…

No flying cars!

Where were they? I have never been so disappointed in my life! I go to a Dredd film to see one thing and one thing only and that’s some cars with no wheels and AIR IN BETWEEN THE VEHICLE AND THE GROUND… All this ‘story’ and ‘art-direction’ and ‘character-development’ and ‘genuine excitement’ and ‘pushing the envelope of Action Sci-Fi towards an art form in itself’ may fool some of the others but thankfully not us.

We're REAL FANS: and the cars must fly or we won’t buy.

7
0

Re: It JUST CANT be Dredd without big Shoulder-pads and flying cars!

"pushing the envelope of Action Sci-Fi towards an art form in itself," LOL! Spoken like a true nerd.

Idiot.

0
7
Bronze badge
FAIL

"it went a bit crap in the 1990s"

Then again, which action comic hasn't?

Could we just agree that the 90's never happened and move on? Thank you.

1
0
Terminator

Stallone defeated an ABC Warrior?

Not in my lifetime, he'd have been taken out on a dark windy niight, from 7 clicks, in my sleep. I so hope the new Dredd is better than the review.

N+V

0
0

Just the one bellywheel sir?

Only one belly wheel to be seen too, by the dead fatty as the perps shot their way through citizens in to the block.

For me it was astoundingly close to The Raid, which if you haven't seen I strongly suggest you do. I think the biggest hole for me was the lack of humour. Whatever else you say about the look / style /design of the film Dredd in 2000AD was always full of subtle jokes in the back ground they surely could have snuck a bunch in. Also as others have said Dredd one liners and funny crimes. Maybe I will see some that I missed on a second, 2D, viewing.(3D, while there are one or two pretty uses that are the now ordinary lots of fragments coming out the screen at you, pretty much leaves me cold and I have seen a lot of 3D films now).

The vehicles bugged me, not so much the Lawmaster which did, at least, appear to be rideable. Something that Dredd's comic square wheeled behemoth would and could never be. It was more the first chase taking place in a reasonably good condition Volkswagen T3 Transporter van that must surely be a collectors item by the time Dredd and co are doing their thing in Megacity One.

I will see it again and I will hope for sequels because any Judge Dredd is better than none (yes even Stallone Dredd) but I will wait in hope that someday someone does it right ... bring on a future Dredd reboot ;)

0
0

Page:

This topic is closed for new posts.