The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

“Dredd 3D” judge, jury, and executioner

“Dredd 3D” is a new film based on the classic and infamous sci-fi British comic book character Judge Dredd, a fascist cop in the not-so-distant post-apocalyptic future. Nuclear war has ravaged most of America and all that remains is Mega-City One, a massive dystopian city that stretches from Boston to Washington D.C.

Overpopulation and subsequent overcrowding in the city has resulted in rampant crime, anarchy and civil unrest. This unstable environment has forced the city government to give Mega-City One’s cops far greater power. The cops, known as Judges, have the roles of judge, jury and executioner, and are allowed to dispense justice at any given moment; they are literally the law.

While investigating a call-in at a residential building over three homicides, Dredd (Keith Urban) and rookie-judge Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) find evidence of a new city drug called Slow-Mo and promptly arrest a suspect. However, things don’t go as planned. They become trapped in the massive building when sadistic gang leader Ma-ma (Lena Headey) and her cohorts activate a lockdown, which has also trapped the thousands of residents inside.

Ma-ma offers an ultimatum to the residents: kill the two judges or the lockdown will not be removed. Up against hundreds of blood-thirsty residents, Dredd and Anderson must make their way to the top of the building to reach the gang leader.

Thanks to a great script penned by “28 Days Later” writer Alex Garland, the movie is full of surprises that keep you on the edge of your seat. The adrenaline-filled action sequences will have you holding your breathe and clenching your teeth. But breathe quickly in between the action, because the film doesn’t slow down for long.

Dredd successfully balances violent blood-soaked action with moments of deadpan black humor, something the comic is well-known for in the UK. Another highlight is the film’s use of 3D. The problem with many of today’s movies is that the 3D tends to be an afterthought, something that’s slapped on post-production in an attempt to cash in on the 3D fad that was started by Avatar.

However, Dredd is a rare exception. The film crew used some of the newest 3D camera technology for the film. So new, in fact, that they had to experiment with it while on set. It paid off – it just may be the best 3D film since “Avatar.”

The oversaturated colors featured in the slow-motion scenes are beautiful and the flying debris and particles will have you lifting your hands up to shield your eyes – it’s that good. Dredd’s soundtrack is equally as impressive as its special effects. The score features a solid mix of industrial beats, highly reverbed synths and heavy bass guitar that go perfectly with the post-apocalyptic setting.

What sets Dredd apart from other action movies is that it’s also thought-provoking, proving you can have a great action film with an equally great story that makes you think. Dredd isn’t another compromised PG-13 adaptation either (like most comic book based movies).

It wears its R rating proudly and is all the better for it. The film’s violent slow-motion scenes are a sight to behold -gory and violent, yet beautiful and mesmerizing. You won’t be able to look away from the carnage; this simply wouldn’t have been possible in a PG-13 film.

Dredd stays true to the comic book, which will please longtime fans of the comic book who were burned by the terribly unfaithful ’90s adaption that starred Stallone. Unfortunately Dredd hasn’t received much marketing due to its low budget and very few people seem to realize it’s currently out. Do yourself (and the producers) a favor: see it and judge this movie yourself.

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