So finally I got to watch Dredd 3-D. Pete Travis-directed and Alex Garland-penned movie based on the character from the comic book 2000 AD. I’ve always thought that the anarchic world of Mega-City One would make an amazing backdrop for one of the myriad stories penned by Alan Grant and John Wagner.
in May, where he stated: “this is Dredd as it should be done – true to character, visceral, unrelentingly violent
Dredd is a bloody, violent and gory movie. In starting scenes, we get a scene scene where people are being skinned alive along with scenes of someone’s head being cooked. later on the movie, limbs are flying, brain matter leaks through noses, heads get blown, faces sliced and so many more which was actually needed as a part of story.
In a post-apocalyptic USA, 800 million people lived in a walled land separated from the toxic wastelands that covered the rest of the country. One such city was Mega City One, where our story took place. People lived in fear and so fought against each other. Poverty gave birth to rampant criminality where organized crime ruled everything. The ‘peacekeepers’ were these Judges who worked for the Justice Department. These Judges were also Jury and Executioner. Calls and punishments – were made on the spot. Naturally, they were mistrusted and even hated. While the story might not hold up to be the most significant thing in the movie, it’s the over-the-top action that truly delivers. Dredd uses a wide variety of ways to kill enemies such as throwing them off 200 foot story buildings, lighting baddies on fire, ammo piercing bullets to the face, gas grenades, and even punching people until they beg for mercy. All the action is ultra-violent, bloody, and incredibly enjoying.
I’m also impressed with the way Dredd was presented. Dredd was a man wearing a mask who carried out justice. And that mask covered his face except for the mouth and chin. Behind the mask, there was a man; the story teased us a little bit of the man’s background but didn’t elaborate on it. A lot of times when they are filmed, superheroes or comic book characters have origin stories. But Dredd didn’t get one. The narrative on this man’s past was cut off because the characters had to move on with the story. And yet, we can still feel something for him anyway, solely based on what he had to do in this story. For an actor to be able to make something like that happen – make us feel something for him without showing us his face or his reasons to be – that was a damn good job. Excellent, even. I doubt anyone else but Karl Urban could pull that off. He has truly owned this character.
That quibble aside, I liked the interior set design of Peach Trees, as it managed to conjure something of the ’80′s cyberpunk style used throughout the comics, with a big emphasise on large scale to make the film feel bigger than it probably was. The overhaul given to the Judges equipment and apparel was also appropriate: Dredd still keeps his traditional helmet, but gone are the large gold pauldrons and chain, in favour of sleeker, more utilitarian combat suits.
In summary, from a 2000AD fan’s point of view, Dredd 3D successfully executes a manageable story with flair, while generally keeping true to the source material. There is definite room for narrative improvement, which I hope to see in subsequent sequels, along with a better redesign of Mega-City One; though when I consider how badly they could have fucked this up, I have to conclude that Dredd 3D is an unassuming victory.
‘Say No to Slo-Mo’ – Hall of Justice anti-narcotic broadcast
Final rating 9/10