Dredd (2012) – Film Review

I finally get around to watching Dredd, and I’m pleased to say that I really enjoyed it. Read on for the full review.

Dredd (2012)

Dredd

So, I finally got around to watching Dredd last Friday, and I can safely say that it’s one of the most fun films that I’ve seen in the last two years. Whilst I’ve only read the first volume of JMS’ newly relaunched series from IDW, I can tell you right of the bat – Dredd is one film that you’ll want to see if you haven’t already. It’s action packed, bloody, gory – and with an awesome cast (even if a standard small one) that allow for some great entertainment.

At the start of the movie, we are introduced to Judge Dredd, played wonderfully by Karl Urban – who I now think would make a great choice to play the next Batman alongside Henry Cavill’s Superman in the upcoming Batman vs. Superman film – plays successfully as the central character, and gets some very awesome things to do in this film. For anyone who hasn’t encountered Judge Dredd before, prepare to be blown away. Whilst I’ve only seen bits of the Stallone-starring film that was viewed as pretty much a disappointment by everybody, it was enough for me to know that Dredd not only beats it, but is about five million miles ahead of it. It’s a solid outing that of all of the films that hit in 2012, really, really deserves a sequel.  The supporting cast are nonetheless spectacular, and Olivia Thirlby’s role as the Rookie Anderson isn’t just limited to the sidelines – she actually plays a role to the film that’s almost as important as Dredd himself. Rounding out the three principal characters is the villain, Lena Headey, perhaps best known as her performance as Cersei in A Game of Thrones, who plays the villain Ma-Ma, very well. The characters are pretty awesome, and they lead the movie very well.

The action scenes are also one of the film’s highlights. Whilst the film may bare remarkable similarities to The Raid: Redemption, in the whole City-block under siege plotline (although I haven’t seen The Raid, I know what it’s about), I believe that Dredd actually went into production before The Raid, despite coming out afterwards, and really presents an interesting spin on the plot whilst allowing for some pretty awesome twists and turns even if you know that Dredd himself will actually come out on top.

What’s refreshing to see about this film is that it isn’t an origin story – like is common with so many other comic book adaptions, Man of Steel, Batman Begins, Iron Man, Captain America: The First Avenger… the list could go on, and not only that – it’s been stated before that Dredd isn’t actually adapted from any comic, allowing for an awesome take on the character. Whilst this film won’t be considered a genre classic, it’s easily one of the most fun sci-fi films that I’ve seen, and an action-packed blockbuster right the way through. I wasn’t a massive fan of the slow-mo sequences brought about the drug use, but they didn’t really stay longer than they should have, and the vast majority of the film allows for a great watch. Urban nails it as Dredd, and the script is very strong, allowing for a very solid watch.

Great fun. Do go and see if you haven’t already, and make sure you pick up the DVD – we need a sequel to this thing, and we need it fast!

VERDICT: 4/5

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