head head head
Home Contact RSS Feed
News   •   Features   •   Reviews   •   Podcasts   •   Contests   •   Contact Us   •   About Us
Movie Review: Dredd 3D
FamousMonster   |  

DREDD 3D PosterDredd 3D
Directed by Pete Travis
Written by Alex Garland
Starring Karl Urban, Olivia Thirlby, Wood Harris, Lena Headey, Domhnall Gleeson
Lionsgate | DNA Films
Rated R | 95 Minutes
Release Date: September 21, 2012

Created by John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra, Judge Dredd first appeared in 1977 in the science-fiction anthology 2000 AD. A law enforcer given the power of judge, jury, and executioner, Dredd patrols the dystopian metropolis of Mega-City One, a vast city-state within a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

In 1995, director Danny Cannon (I Still Know What You Did Last Summer) brought Judge Dredd to the big screen starring Sylvester Stallone, Diane Lane, Max von Sydow, and Rob Schneider – and yes, you read that correctly – that’s Deuce Bigalow Male Gigalo, not Roy Scheider of Jaws.

Judge Dredd is pure ’90s cheese: a violent, effects-heavy movie that feels like the best parts of RoboCop and the worst parts of Demolition Man – the comic book equivalent to 1993′s Super Mario Bros. Looking back on it, if Stallone would have kept his helmet on – and if Rob Schneider wasn’t involved – it might have been a passable action movie.

Luckily, Hollywood believes in second chances – especially if there’s money to be made. In a cinematic landscape post-Batman Begins, it seems everything is being rebooted or re-imagined with a dark, gritty, brooding twist.

The light gets dark, the dark gets darker. With a remake of RoboCop right around the corner, and the recent box office success of superhero and comic book adaptations, it was only a matter of time until Judge Dredd was put back on duty.

Dredd 3D - Karl Urban

This time around, Pete Travis (Vantage Point) directs Dredd 3D, based on a screenplay by Alex Garland (28 Days Later, Sunshine, Never Let Me Go). The film stars Karl Urban (Star Trek) as Dredd and Olivia Thirlby (The Wackness) as Anderson, Dredd’s rookie partner with a psychic mutation.

Dredd and Anderson go to the Peach Trees, a high-rise in Mega-City One, to investigate a routine triple homicide when they are trapped inside the 200-story by Ma-Ma (Lena Headey), the tower’s resident drug lord and all-around bad bitch. Together they must fight their way out of the blast shield-protected mega-structure floor by floor and deliver judgment to Ma-Ma and her gang.

Ma-Ma is the brains behind a new synthetic drug called Slo-Mo, an addictive inhalant that slows the user’s perception of time to 1% of normal speed, which makes for some pretty beautiful, disorienting scenes (enhanced by 3D) where bullets whiz by Matrix-style and pierce flesh and bone with elegant precision. Ma-Ma is so unrelenting in her brutality that she forces enemies to inhale Slo-Mo before skinning them alive and throwing them off a 200-story tower block, allowing them to slowly plummet to their concrete-cracking demise.

For fans of The Raid: Redemption, the plot may sound somewhat familiar, even though Garland began writing Dredd in 2006 during post-production on Sunshine. Garland would go on to complete his first draft during filming of 28 Weeks Later, with Judge Dredd creator John Wagner revising the script and tweaking dialogue. The ‘fight our way out’ plot isn’t an entirely new idea anyway, being as both films seem semi-inspired by John Carpenter’s Assault on Precinct 13 – but it is one of those Armageddon / Deep Impact situations where two films with similar ideas are released back-to-back.

Dredd 3D: Thirlby

Travis’ Dredd 3D is a violent, no-holds-barred, post-apocalyptic masterpiece. It amazes me that, in an age of PG-13 horror movies and watered-down, derivative crap, a hard-R sci-fi action movie can be released in theaters with tons of blood and head-exploding awesomeness. Dredd 3D is everything the RoboCop remake should be, but won’t be – a brutal, pulpy tech-noir dressed in the trappings of a bleak, dystopian future.

As I write this review, Dredd 3D will have only made $6,300,000 this weekend – and that’s fucking sad. It’s sad that people are more willing to watch the absolutely abysmal House at the end of the Street ($13 Million opening weekend gross) or the SIXTH Resident Evil movie, Resident Evil: Retribution ($6,700,000 this weekend) than an inspired, faithful comic book adaptation with balls – a grindhouse satire that isn’t afraid to skin a few thugs alive.

If you long for the days when science-fiction action flicks were rated R and sold to actual adults instead of PG-13, bloodless, generic novelties for kids with learner’s permits, then Dredd 3D is a fantastically fun shoot ‘em up with great performances by Urban, Thirlby, Headey, and Avon Barksdale himself, Wood Harris.

Look, if you’re a geek (and I assume you are), you need to saddle up and go to the theater and see Dredd 3D. It’s Blade Runner meets Die Hard, and I desperately want a sequel with robots, aliens, mutants and bad-ass Karl Urban growling and field-dressing himself with a Predator-esque first aid kit. I AM THE LAW!

Follow me on Twitter!

  • asucolin

    I loved the Sly Dredd…sorry

  • http://www.facebook.com/josh.woods.ef Josh Woods

    I loved this movie! Been spreading it around to everyone i know in hopes that they will listen and help it go through to a sequel. It feels kind of like the treatment Kick Ass got and I heard it did really well overseas and is at the #1 slot. So who knows!

  • Rodney Holmes

    I saw it on opening day this past Friday. It is awesome!! I’ve been trying to get people to see it. I just don’t understand it. It really is sad because they don’t know what they’re missing.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joe-Soap/100001455228066 Joe Soap

    This might be the only real Judge Dredd film we ever get, go see it. If enough people do we may even get sequels.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001294403190 Chad Redding

    this version of DREDD rocked! karl urban was a phenomeal casting as the dredd I cant wait for the sequel

  • jomix

    This movie is far much better than ex…shhhhh!

  • http://twitter.com/Residentclubber Andy Barbieri

    Loved this movie too! But it does seem to be a current trend that films that don’t do that well in the US box office on the opening weekend, but do very well in the international markets, are according to the media, rendering any film rubbish, but doing well and gaining a cult following when released on bluray/DVD. Hopefully Dredd gets the recognition it deserves!

  • Ron

    I checked out the midnight premiere and LOVED it! I’ve been a Judge Dredd fan since the 80′s, when I collected the Eagle Comics series. I didn’t care for the mid 90′s film at all, total junk, but this one is an instant classic. Great action film. Been trying to gather up some more people to go see it this weekend, but it’s proving to be a difficult task…so sad.

Previous Article
Next Article
Around the Web
Geeks of Doom on Instagram Follow Geeks of Doom on Tumblr
Geeks of Doom on YouTube Geeks of Doom on Pinterest
Geeks of Doom Email Digest Geeks of Doom RSS Feed
Check out all of our current contests listings
Check out all of our current contests listings
The Drill Down Podcast TARDISblend Podcast Skull-Face Island Movie Podcast
Get Geeks of Doom Gear on CafePress
BlendoveR   ·   Cinema Blend   ·   Collider   ·   Film School Rejects   ·   First Showing   ·   io9   ·   Latino Review   ·   Screen Rant   ·   Slashfilm   ·   The Mary Sue
2520 Clothing Company
Animated  ·  Apps  ·  Art  ·  Best-Sellers  ·  Bits of Doom  ·  Blog  ·  Blu-ray  ·  Book of Geek  ·  Books  ·  Cartoons  ·  Celebrity  ·  Charity  ·  Collectibles  ·  Comics  ·  Computers  ·  Contests  ·  Conventions  ·  Deals  ·  DIY  ·  Documentary  ·  Doom Deliveries  ·  DVDs  ·  Electronics  ·  Environment  ·  Fanatic  ·  Features  ·  Gadgets  ·  Games  ·  Gear  ·  Geek Finds  ·  Geek Girls  ·  Gift Guide  ·  Holidays  ·  Humor  ·  Interviews  ·  Movies  ·  Music  ·  News  ·  News Bytes  ·  Obit  ·  Photos  ·  Podcasts  ·  Politics  ·  Poll  ·  Press Releases  ·  Recaps  ·  Reviews  ·  Rumors  ·  Science  ·  Software  ·  Sports  ·  Technology  ·  Television  ·  Theater  ·  Theme Parks  ·  Trailers  ·  Travel  ·  Video Games  ·  Videos  ·  Web Games  ·  Week of Geek  ·  Zombie Round-Up
January 2014  ·   December 2013  ·   November 2013  ·   October 2013  ·   September 2013  ·   August 2013  ·   July 2013  ·   June 2013  ·   May 2013  ·   April 2013  ·   March 2013  ·   February 2013  ·   January 2013  ·   December 2012  ·   November 2012  ·   October 2012  ·   September 2012  ·   August 2012  ·   July 2012  ·   June 2012  ·   May 2012  ·   April 2012  ·   March 2012  ·   February 2012  ·   January 2012  ·   December 2011  ·   November 2011  ·   October 2011  ·   September 2011  ·   August 2011  ·   July 2011  ·   June 2011  ·   May 2011  ·   April 2011  ·   March 2011  ·   February 2011  ·   January 2011  ·   December 2010  ·   November 2010  ·   Octber 2010  ·   September 2010  ·   August 2010  ·   July 2010  ·   June 2010  ·   May 2010  ·   April 2010  ·   March 2010  ·   February 2010  ·   January 2010  ·   December 2009  ·   November 2009  ·   Octber 2009  ·   September 2009  ·   August 2009  ·   July 2009  ·   June 2009  ·   May 2009  ·   April 2009  ·   March 2009  ·   February 2009  ·   January 2009  ·   December 2008  ·   November 2008  ·   Octber 2008  ·   September 2008  ·   August 2008  ·   July 2008  ·   June 2008  ·   May 2008  ·   April 2008  ·   March 2008  ·   February 2008  ·   January 2008  ·   December 2007  ·   November 2007  ·   Octber 2007  ·   September 2007  ·   August 2007  ·   July 2007  ·   June 2007  ·   May 2007  ·   April 2007  ·   March 2007  ·   February 2007  ·   January 2007  ·   December 2006  ·   November 2006  ·   Octber 2006  ·   September 2006  ·   August 2006  ·   July 2006  ·   June 2006  ·   May 2006  ·   April 2006  ·   March 2006
Creative Commons License
This website is licensed under
a Creative Commons License.
Geeks of Doom is proudly powered by WordPress.

Students of the Unusual™ comic cover used with permission of 3BoysProductions
The Mercuri Bros.™ comic cover used with permission of Prodigal Son Press

Geeks of Doom is designed and maintained by our geeky webmaster
All original content copyright ©2005-2014 Geeks of Doom
All external content copyright of its respective owner, except where noted

Privacy Policy | Contact