Review: Dredd 3D
Dredd was a bit surprising, and I half-anticipated being disappointed. I’m not sure if Dredd was supposed to be a rewrite of the original Judge Dredd from 1995 starring Sylvester Stallone playing Joseph Dredd, or if it’s simply a retelling of the story with a completely and totally different story. I was pleasantly surprised at the entire movie, and pleased to see that it wasn’t just a simple retelling of the same old story.
I had anticipated that this movie would be a frantic bloodbath in a building with an overzealous Judge Dredd that ends up getting wrongfully judged himself and placed in the prison system. But, much to my surprise, the story didn’t go there a little or a lot. It simply told a new totally new story about a Judge (Karl Urban), that never takes off his helmet, training a new rookie Judge Anderson, played by Olivia Thirlby. She coincidentally picks a crime to investigate that is located in a building controlled by a gang leader called Ma-Ma. As it turns out, Ma-Ma also controls a new reality-altering drug called Slo-Mo, and when her domain is threatened, she orders a military lockdown of the building and forces the judges into a major conflict that leads to an action-packed, fantastically well-planned life or death battle.
Ma-Ma, played by Lena Headey, was one of the best well-rounded bad guys with just the right amount of brains and displaced anger to achieve and be in the position that she was in. It is been said that a movie like this isn’t any good if it doesn’t have a good bad guy, and in this case Ma-Ma is a convincing lunatic that is unpredictable and outright awesomely betrayed.
Judge Dredd and the rookie Judge Anderson, are both spot on. Anderson, being the exception to the rules of becoming a judge, is allowed to test with Judge Dredd because of her mutant ability to read minds. Although it was easy to see from the beginning this ability could be abused or misused to make the story and the character unbelievable, this was not the case. It was perfectly balanced, well used, and overall another great set of performances.
I easily rate Dredd a solid 8 on a scale of 1 to 10. It has all the attributes of a good movie, and lived up to and exceeded all expectations and anticipation of the movie, although I’m not sure how much the 3-D benefits this movie. There were times when the effects were cool, but overall I didn’t feel they were necessary. I also feel that based on the ending there’s a sequel coming, and I’m looking forward to it.