Review: The film starts off with a narrative that pretty much explains what the movie is going to be all about. “The future America is an irradiated wasteland. On it’s East Coast, running from Boston to Washington DC, lies Mega City One – a vast, violent metropolis where criminals rule the chaotic streets. The only force of order lies with the urban cops called "judges" who possess the combined powers of judge, jury and instant execution. Known and feared throughout the city."
Judge Dredd is a comic book character from the 2000 AD anthology. The first movie based on this comic book character came out in the year 1995, with Sylvester Stallone playing the role of Judge Dredd. Not only did the movie fare quite badly, it also pissed off a lot of comic book enthusiasts (mainly because Sylvester Stallone took off his helmet, and in the comic books, Judge Dredd NEVER takes his helmet off).
In this rendition Judge Dredd, played by Karl Urban, teams up with “rookie” Judge Anderson, played by Olivia Thirlby, who frankly speaking isn’t even close to Judge material (even in the movie she failed her exams “marginally’) but is chosen because of a certain genetic mutation that gives her psychic powers (it was as if Judge Dredd met one of the X-men). Together they have to take down Ma-Ma, played by Lena Headey, who is a terrifying drug-lord (and I mean truly terrifying). The movie has a lot of “boom boom bang bang” which will definitely keep movie lovers as well as comic book enthusiasts interested. The entire movie was like a video game of sorts. If there were an Xbox/PS3 controller in my hand, I could have sworn I wouldn’t know the difference (first person shooter game lovers rejoice). The movie is quite straight-forward and has no twists and turns. The “what is going to happen next” part is easy to predict, but “how it is going to happen” will make you go “woohoo”, in most cases atleast. The visuals of the movie are stunning. Its like candy for your eyes. A treat to watch. Also, the movie is quite violent. If you faint at the sight of blood, you will surely turn suicidal when you watch this one. Awesome visuals mixed with a lot of violence makes the movie what it is. Some moments in the movie are supreme and will leaveyou gasping!
Lena Headey played a mean villain. Her role as Ma Ma stood out. Throughout the movie Karl Urban was definitely trying to pull off a Stallone. Unfortunately for him, his expressions resembled an unhappy grim reaper. Olivia Thirlby did a pretty decent role, and as the movie progressed she got better. The background score was a bit of a letdown. It was as if Paul Leonard-Morgan was trying to pull of a Hans Zimmer and then somewhere midway he decided he’ll change styles.
The movie will appeal mostly to a niche audience. Gamers, comic-book enthusiasts and action-movie lovers will thoroughly enjoy this movie.
Verdict: Awesome Visuals and gruesome violence. Not for the faint hearted or pregnant women!
Director: Pete Travis
Cast: Karl Urban, Olivia Thirlby, Lena Headey, Wood Harris, Domhnall Gleeson, Langley Kirkwood
Writer: Alex Garland
Music: Paul Leonard-Morgan
Length: 1 hour 35 minutes