Sunday, June 29, 2014

Street tough: DREDD(2012)

I watched Dredd(2012) again on Blu Ray a few nights ago. This movie, directed by Pete Travis, has quickly become a favorite of mine. Karl Urban stars in the title role as Judge Dredd, one of a cadre of judges who, working for the Hall Of Justice, serve as the law on the streets of Megacity One, a colossal city industrial complex of 8 million people that stretches from New York City to Boston, MA. These judges serve as both judge, jury and executioner for those criminals unfortunate enough to cross them. This comic book character first came to the big screen back in 1995 in "Judge Dredd", a movie I think is decent but hardly did the title character any justice. While Sylvester Stallone, who played the character in the '95 film, managed to convey the rugged, no nonsense physicality of Judge Dredd the campiness of the movie and the comic relief element courtesy of Rob Schneider IMO detracted from the film. In Dredd(2012) there is no camp and no efforts by the director to inject humor of any kind into this movie. The film is a straight forward, full force R rated and gritty action affair that for me much more effectively captures the essence of Judge Dredd, especially his intimidating presence and the manner in which he dispenses "justice" to criminals.

The title character never removes his helmet in this movie, a major plus for me and I also like the performance of Lena Headey as the ruthless, brutal villain in this movie, ex prostitute turned crime(and drug) lord "Madeleine Madrigal" aka "Ma Ma". For Dredd(2012) to work the title character needs a truly evil villain and "Ma Ma" is absolutely that.

 The special effects are marvelous as Judge Dredd, accompanied by a rookie, probationary "Judge" named Cassandra Anderson(who's also telepathic), takes on the "Ma Ma clan", a small army of thugs inside a two hundred story apartment structure. Dredd and his rookie partner systematically eradicate Ma Ma's thugs, punching and blasting their way through them as well as a trio of corrupt judges hired by "Ma Ma" to kill Dredd and his partner. Fans of this character and action movie fans who haven't seen this movie should do so. You won't be disappointed!

So far there has been no official word on whether there will be a sequel to this film. Actor Karl Urban has stated he would be willing to reprise the role of the mercurial, no nonsense Dredd. There is, as far as I know, at least one fan petition online in support of a sequel. I absolutely hope one gets made!

A trailer:

This movie looks terrific on Blu Ray and can be purchased on BD at Amazon by clicking the link: DREDD(2012) Blu Ray