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The UnPopular Opinion: Dredd

Aug. 14, 2013by: Alex Maidy

THE UNPOPULAR OPINION is an ongoing column featuring different takes on films that either the writer HATED, but that the majority of film fans LOVED, or that the writer LOVED, but that most others LOATHED. We're hoping this column will promote constructive and geek fueled discussion. Enjoy!

****SOME SPOILERS ENSUE****

Every so often a movie comes around that just clicks with fans because it gets the source material that inspired it just right and everything clicks in terms of story, effects, cast, and execution. Last summer, that movie was supposed to be DREDD starring Karl Urban. After the much maligned Sylvester Stallone version alienated fans of the comic it was expected that a much more serious take on the material would be needed to jump-start the potential for a JUDGE DREDD franchise. Unfortunately, Pete Travis' film still made the same mistakes as the 1995 film.

While DREDD does have the potential to work, it simply falls flat of the original comic book. In the comic, Dredd is a Clint Eastwood-esque cowboy character in a nihilistic future world. But, the comic was a very dark comic satire. The over the top violence that fuels the comic is put there for both entertaintment and to further the underlying message of corruption in modern politics. When making an action movie for mainstream audiences it can sometimes be hard to maintain a deep satirical thread without delving too much in one direction or the other. Where JUDGE DREDD became too much of a comedy, DREDD is simply just too serious and misses the point of the comic.

Sylvester Stallone is an emotive character, even if his only output is screaming or yelling to denote the entire spectrum of human feelings. His take on Judge Dredd was one that played as hammy and cheesy on screen. Karl Urban, who has been phenomenal in everything from THE LORD OF THE RINGS to STAR TREK and more, keeps his helmet on for almost the entire duration of DREDD and that pretty much becomes his character. While a comic book character has time to develop over issues and years of story, bringing that out in a film can be difficult. Urban is definitely a cool version of the judge, but he misses the humor in the role. Every one-liner uttered in the film plays like a rejected line from Christopher Nolan's DARK KNIGHT films. At least Nolan was able to show some moments of levity where DREDD is devoid.

Instead of focusing on Dredd himself, Travis' film assaults the senses with a 3D barrage of insane slow motion scenes that are built into the plot's use of a drug called very creatively called Slo-Mo. For the first minute or two, the Slo-Mo sequences feel cool, unique, and interesting, but then they drag on and on and on, leaving you to question if they are just to pad out the running time of the movie. Because, with such a bare plot you need something to reach that unspoken minimum of ninety minutes of running time. Without the slow motion, DREDD is really just a video game dressed as an action movie.

At this point you probably want to punch me in the face, but hear me out. I love video games, but that doesn't mean I loved the movie version of DOOM (hey! Karl Urban again!). DOOM's game scenes were spot on, but the rest of the movie was awful. In a lot of ways, DREDD feels that way too. Honestly, DREDD may be worse because the plot doesn't even pretend to not be a rip-off of THE RAID: REDEMPTION. Both films feature police scaling a building crawling with criminals and addicts plotting their demise. It is entirely possible both films can exist with similar plots, but having seen both films, THE RAID pulls it off so much better. I am a fan of screenwriter Alex Garland (28 DAYS LATER, SUNSHINE), but DREDD may be his weakest screenplay so far.

Yeah, Rob Schneider and Armand Assante may be big negatives in JUDGE DREDD, but I cannot stand Olivia Thirlby's Judge Anderson character in DREDD. Her entire existence feels as if it is just to further the plot and conveniently allow for the climax of the film to work within the confines of the screenplay. Based on a character from the comics, Anderson comes across much differently in the movie than she did in the comic. Of course, films are completely open to changing and updating characters, but both Urban and Thirlby feel like two dimensional takes on characters that should have been easy to bring to life.

The lone bright spot in DREDD is Lena Headey's Ma-Ma. Headey is a great actress who proved she is a villain of highest regard on GAME OF THRONES and potrays Ma-ma with such a dead-eyed ferocity that it is a shame she is relegated to the Big Boss character in this movie. I wanted her to be a much stronger adversary for Judge Dredd, to bring something out of his stoic character. Instead, she just brings more death.

I can enjoy a blood-soaked action flick with the best of them, but DREDD has no heart. DREDD is a well filmed collection of action scenes that should have been a part of a much livelier movie. Like the characters populating Ma-Ma's tower, DREDD is lifeless, dull, and out of chances. There is a petition for a sequel to DREDD to get made, but I don't want to see another movie like this one. I want the medium between JUDGE and DREDD. Maybe Urban isn't the man, maybe Stallone wasn't either, but someone out there is capable of bridging that line between campy, over the top, violent, and damn funny. Maybe someday we will get that DREDD.

Oh, and if you have any suggestions for The UnPopular Opinion Im always happy to hear them. You can send along an email to alexmaidy@joblo.com, spell it out below, slap it up on my wall in Movie Fan Central, or send me a private message via Movie Fan Central. Provide me with as many movie suggestions as you like, with any reasoning you'd care to share, and if I agree then you may one day see it featured in this very column!
Recent UnPopular Opinions:
EVENT HORIZON
FANTASTIC FOUR
PSYCHO (1998)
THE SHADOW
HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES
BLADE: TRINITY
Source: JoBlo.com

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10:26AM on 08/15/2013
Will Joblo ever do a retraction for an article like this? The whole premise of this guys "opinion" weighed on him thinking it ripped off The Raid, which is incorrect and over a dozen poster comments corrected this with proper information. I understand these "Unpopular Opinion" things are almost a "Trolling" piece, but if it not based off documented actual facts about the movie and pretty much whatever the writer believes the movie was about, what does the described opinion matter?
Will Joblo ever do a retraction for an article like this? The whole premise of this guys "opinion" weighed on him thinking it ripped off The Raid, which is incorrect and over a dozen poster comments corrected this with proper information. I understand these "Unpopular Opinion" things are almost a "Trolling" piece, but if it not based off documented actual facts about the movie and pretty much whatever the writer believes the movie was about, what does the described opinion matter?
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12:37AM on 08/15/2013

haha

man. why haven't they gotten rid of this column? oh right, probably because it gets too many hits for all the wrong reasons. this is just shoddy journalism at best. man, why can't we just get interesting writing from someone who actually likes movies. instead of this shit
man. why haven't they gotten rid of this column? oh right, probably because it gets too many hits for all the wrong reasons. this is just shoddy journalism at best. man, why can't we just get interesting writing from someone who actually likes movies. instead of this shit
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2:43AM on 08/15/2013
I agree. I like it when someone likes a movie that everyone hated. That way, it's an interesting read to see what good they found from the movie. When it's bashing a movie everyone loves, they just resort to cynicism and present their unpopular OPINION as fact as if to challenge the readers and start a fight.

"DREDD has no heart. DREDD is a well filmed collection of action scenes that should have been a part of a much livelier movie. Like the characters populating Ma-Ma's tower, DREDD is
I agree. I like it when someone likes a movie that everyone hated. That way, it's an interesting read to see what good they found from the movie. When it's bashing a movie everyone loves, they just resort to cynicism and present their unpopular OPINION as fact as if to challenge the readers and start a fight.

"DREDD has no heart. DREDD is a well filmed collection of action scenes that should have been a part of a much livelier movie. Like the characters populating Ma-Ma's tower, DREDD is lifeless, dull, and out of chances -"

I mean come on! How is that even worded as an opinion?
12:21AM on 08/15/2013
dredd was fuckin awesome bro. with all due respect and much love.... blow it out your ass!
dredd was fuckin awesome bro. with all due respect and much love.... blow it out your ass!
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11:41PM on 08/14/2013

I didn't see Dredd

but I respect the fact that this was the version the fans wanted. It's like the people who shit on Batman Begins for being realistic and serious: the previous Batman movie was Batman and Robin and the fans wanted something less campy and more serious. The same thing happened here. Now a lot of fans are saying they liked Tim Burton's Batman better, which is fine because that's their opinion. The Batman in the Batman / Superman movie that comes out in 2015 should have elements of both and
but I respect the fact that this was the version the fans wanted. It's like the people who shit on Batman Begins for being realistic and serious: the previous Batman movie was Batman and Robin and the fans wanted something less campy and more serious. The same thing happened here. Now a lot of fans are saying they liked Tim Burton's Batman better, which is fine because that's their opinion. The Batman in the Batman / Superman movie that comes out in 2015 should have elements of both and skirt a fine line between seriousness and campiness, just like a good James Bond. Likewise, the next Dredd movie, be it a sequel or a reboot, should also strike the same balance.
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+16
11:35PM on 08/14/2013
Sometimes I think you make these columns on purpose to piss-off the fans of this site..
Sometimes I think you make these columns on purpose to piss-off the fans of this site..
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11:18PM on 08/14/2013

oh, one more thing..........

it irritates me to no end when people/reviewers act like the whole fucking movie was in slow-motion. theres 4 scenes that feature slo-mo/slow-motion.
the van chase in the [link] in her bath.........the drug den.........mama's fall from 200.

also........one liners? there are a few humourous lines.......like the paperwork statement, and yeah, wait for her to shoot you..............but, I really don't see where there are one liners in this movie.
I do think itd been funny if when dredd gave
it irritates me to no end when people/reviewers act like the whole fucking movie was in slow-motion. theres 4 scenes that feature slo-mo/slow-motion.
the van chase in the [link] in her bath.........the drug den.........mama's fall from 200.

also........one liners? there are a few humourous lines.......like the paperwork statement, and yeah, wait for her to shoot you..............but, I really don't see where there are one liners in this movie.
I do think itd been funny if when dredd gave mama the slo-mo...''how do you plead?" '' fuck you dredd'' (in slowmotion of course)..........dredd slams her thru the glass. she hits the ground. camera back on dredd. ''I knew youd say that''.
surely though, that would have further confused dumbasses that thought that dredd was a sequel to 1995.
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11:12PM on 08/14/2013

having viewed Dredd 15 times now...im glad this article is here...

...it gives me a chance to do something that I probably don't have to do...and quite frankly, no one will care if I do.
im going to apologize and admit how wrong I was. during production, I declared numerous times how this movie would validate stallones version by showing it to be more accurate. the setting, the uniform, the characters...all looked more like their comic couterparts. and while I do still really enjoy the 1995 version, 2011's practically buried that film for me.
I almost didn't
...it gives me a chance to do something that I probably don't have to do...and quite frankly, no one will care if I do.
im going to apologize and admit how wrong I was. during production, I declared numerous times how this movie would validate stallones version by showing it to be more accurate. the setting, the uniform, the characters...all looked more like their comic couterparts. and while I do still really enjoy the 1995 version, 2011's practically buried that film for me.
I almost didn't even go see it in personal protest.......but, now after 15 viewings, its obvious that I am glad I was wrong. so, to anyone who may give a shit, those who don't, or even into the ether.........I apologize.
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10:29AM on 08/15/2013
Good to see you post about your turn around. people should do that more.
Good to see you post about your turn around. people should do that more.
9:20PM on 08/14/2013

If you go campy,

you'll go the way of Batman & Robin, Spider-Man 3, Fantastic Four and Fantastic Four Rise of the Silver Surfer.
you'll go the way of Batman & Robin, Spider-Man 3, Fantastic Four and Fantastic Four Rise of the Silver Surfer.
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9:15PM on 08/14/2013
"I had a vision, of a world without Dredd. The crappy fall releases ground out a little profit and the critics tried to shut them down, one cinema at a time. And it was so... boring. I've had a change of heart. I don't want Mr. Maidy spoiling everything, but why should I have all the fun? Let's give someone else a chance. If Alex Maidy isn't dead in sixty minutes then I blow up a hospital."

...something like that
"I had a vision, of a world without Dredd. The crappy fall releases ground out a little profit and the critics tried to shut them down, one cinema at a time. And it was so... boring. I've had a change of heart. I don't want Mr. Maidy spoiling everything, but why should I have all the fun? Let's give someone else a chance. If Alex Maidy isn't dead in sixty minutes then I blow up a hospital."

...something like that
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8:46PM on 08/14/2013

WHAT THE F?????

"Unfortunately, Pete Travis' film still made the same mistakes as the 1995 film." = 100% WRONG!
THAT IS A CRIME SIR....JUDGEMENT SWIFT = 500 YEARS IN AN ISO CUBE!
"Unfortunately, Pete Travis' film still made the same mistakes as the 1995 film." = 100% WRONG!
THAT IS A CRIME SIR....JUDGEMENT SWIFT = 500 YEARS IN AN ISO CUBE!
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8:06PM on 08/14/2013
Do not agree.
Do not agree.
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+20
7:11PM on 08/14/2013

Cannot relate to this artcile at all!

Dredd was a well rounded, clipped paced and gritty action film with a stand out lead, a badass viillain-ness and, blood and guts galore. And it was was faithful to its source material at that- no complaints on my end.
Dredd was a well rounded, clipped paced and gritty action film with a stand out lead, a badass viillain-ness and, blood and guts galore. And it was was faithful to its source material at that- no complaints on my end.
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5:07PM on 08/14/2013

Dreddful

I couldnt agree more with every point the writer made here. Dredd may have been "written" first but The Raid Redemption was soo much better in every aspect honestly it was hard to take Dredd serious bc Of Karl Urbans delivery on his one liners that were suppose to funny or witty. Then Olivia Thirbley was just nothing but annoying and boring. I wanted to see Dredd it looked decent and got good reviews so i was shocked when i finally saw it and hated it.
I couldnt agree more with every point the writer made here. Dredd may have been "written" first but The Raid Redemption was soo much better in every aspect honestly it was hard to take Dredd serious bc Of Karl Urbans delivery on his one liners that were suppose to funny or witty. Then Olivia Thirbley was just nothing but annoying and boring. I wanted to see Dredd it looked decent and got good reviews so i was shocked when i finally saw it and hated it.
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3:47PM on 08/14/2013

Please do your research next time...

The Raid: Redemption came out in 2011 when Dredd had already started filming back in 2010. Hell the writer and director of The Raid has even stated he wrote his film long after Dredd had been written and was in production.

Write all of these articles you want...but do some easy research first before making comments with no merit.
The Raid: Redemption came out in 2011 when Dredd had already started filming back in 2010. Hell the writer and director of The Raid has even stated he wrote his film long after Dredd had been written and was in production.

Write all of these articles you want...but do some easy research first before making comments with no merit.
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+14
3:13PM on 08/14/2013

Disagree on several counts

I don't think levity was needed because Urban has this unique way of simultaneously doing deadpan and humor. Like where he says, "No, wait for her to shoot you." Who didn't snicker at that part? And he did it without any flourishes. Haven't seen that kind of talent since, well, Clint played Callahan.
I don't think levity was needed because Urban has this unique way of simultaneously doing deadpan and humor. Like where he says, "No, wait for her to shoot you." Who didn't snicker at that part? And he did it without any flourishes. Haven't seen that kind of talent since, well, Clint played Callahan.
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+14
3:05PM on 08/14/2013

Can you guys say:

FLAME BAIT!?
FLAME BAIT!?
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-11
3:04PM on 08/14/2013

Dude, 90% of the time I disagree with this column and think that you're just intentionally trying to rile the fans up, but I really agree with the majority of this article

Dredd was freaking awesome as an action movie, but it did absolutely nothing to capture the feel, or even the central conceit (which IS NOT the characters, its the dark, violent Paul Verhoven-esque social satire) of the comics. And yes, the story was really, really thin and as cool as the action is there is no denying the entire premise of the film is a blatant ripoff of The Raid. I enjoyed this as an action flick, but I really have a tough time understanding how anyone who's actually read the
Dredd was freaking awesome as an action movie, but it did absolutely nothing to capture the feel, or even the central conceit (which IS NOT the characters, its the dark, violent Paul Verhoven-esque social satire) of the comics. And yes, the story was really, really thin and as cool as the action is there is no denying the entire premise of the film is a blatant ripoff of The Raid. I enjoyed this as an action flick, but I really have a tough time understanding how anyone who's actually read the comics, especially the old 2000 ad ones, can feel that this was really the end-all-be-all Dredd film that some people make it out to be.
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5:09PM on 08/14/2013
"And yes, the story was really, really thin and as cool as the action is there is no denying the entire premise of the film is a blatant ripoff of The Raid"

Wow....you really haven't read ANY of the feedback comments have you?
"And yes, the story was really, really thin and as cool as the action is there is no denying the entire premise of the film is a blatant ripoff of The Raid"

Wow....you really haven't read ANY of the feedback comments have you?
+14
2:52PM on 08/14/2013

Sorry, but no thanks

I have to completely disagree on this one as well. I thought that Karl Urban was an absolute perfect casting decision. Not being able to show emotion with his eyes, Karl knocked it out of the park for me. The action was relentless, and definitely awesome. I enjoyed all the characters involved good and bad, they all did a wonderful job. Was hoping for how ruthless Ma Ma was, there would have been more of a fight at the end, but even that is a super minor gripe. Great movie overall and I would
I have to completely disagree on this one as well. I thought that Karl Urban was an absolute perfect casting decision. Not being able to show emotion with his eyes, Karl knocked it out of the park for me. The action was relentless, and definitely awesome. I enjoyed all the characters involved good and bad, they all did a wonderful job. Was hoping for how ruthless Ma Ma was, there would have been more of a fight at the end, but even that is a super minor gripe. Great movie overall and I would LOVE... LOVE... if they made a sequel and got both Karl and Thirby to return. I know both the cast and Alex Garland would to very much come back for more, and hopefully the dvd/blu ray sales were a HUGE indication that the fans (like me) want more. Sign up for the official you want dredd 2 petition if you already havent.
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+14
2:46PM on 08/14/2013
Dredd was amazing in every way, I cannot disagree with this piece more.
Dredd was amazing in every way, I cannot disagree with this piece more.
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1:45PM on 08/14/2013
You completely lost me when you said Urban did good in "Star Trek."
You completely lost me when you said Urban did good in "Star Trek."
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+10
1:42PM on 08/14/2013

Opinions are your own

But I disagree with a lot of your points. For one Urban WAS Dredd for me and I thought his performance was as good as it gets for this type of action film. I respect your position but disagree completely!
But I disagree with a lot of your points. For one Urban WAS Dredd for me and I thought his performance was as good as it gets for this type of action film. I respect your position but disagree completely!
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1:41PM on 08/14/2013

See your point

The underlying commentary from the comics that was omitted was completely lost on me- I didn't know it was missing. Sure an extra layer of depth in storytelling would be great, but I did very much enjoy the R rated 80's sci-fi movie feel of it. I actually really loved it. Good article though
The underlying commentary from the comics that was omitted was completely lost on me- I didn't know it was missing. Sure an extra layer of depth in storytelling would be great, but I did very much enjoy the R rated 80's sci-fi movie feel of it. I actually really loved it. Good article though
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12:47PM on 08/14/2013
Opinions are like Dreams, Feelings and children - Everyone has them and no one cares about yours.
Opinions are like Dreams, Feelings and children - Everyone has them and no one cares about yours.
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12:41PM on 08/14/2013

I very much appreciate your reasoning

And fully understand your viewpoint. But that having been said, I just fucking loved this film from beginning to end. The 3d was spectacular and the whole thing just felt like a great throwback to the classic action films of the 80's. Furthermore I think Urban nailed the part. Granted I was never that big a fan of the comics, so my opinion is based purely on the film itself. Had I been a fan of the comic I probably would have agreed with all of your points.
And fully understand your viewpoint. But that having been said, I just fucking loved this film from beginning to end. The 3d was spectacular and the whole thing just felt like a great throwback to the classic action films of the 80's. Furthermore I think Urban nailed the part. Granted I was never that big a fan of the comics, so my opinion is based purely on the film itself. Had I been a fan of the comic I probably would have agreed with all of your points.
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+1
12:31PM on 08/14/2013

Hurn...

I did like Urban as Dredd, but I agree with about every thing else you say, especially about Thirby's character. I was surprised by Dredd, bc it wasn't awful, and there was some cool stuff, but I never understood how a lot of ppl liked it a lot more than that.
I did like Urban as Dredd, but I agree with about every thing else you say, especially about Thirby's character. I was surprised by Dredd, bc it wasn't awful, and there was some cool stuff, but I never understood how a lot of ppl liked it a lot more than that.
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12:21PM on 08/14/2013

I see your point, but it was still a badass movie

I agree on some level that this Dredd didn't really depict the exaggerated character Dredd is, and the satirical side of his reality, it simply made him out to be just a formidable judge, not the legend that Dredd it supposed to be.
I agree on some level that this Dredd didn't really depict the exaggerated character Dredd is, and the satirical side of his reality, it simply made him out to be just a formidable judge, not the legend that Dredd it supposed to be.
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-15
12:17PM on 08/14/2013
This is your typical shit movie that the film or geek elitist will force themselves to love just to be contrary so they can circle jerk with one another about how much more they know about movies than everyone else.
This is your typical shit movie that the film or geek elitist will force themselves to love just to be contrary so they can circle jerk with one another about how much more they know about movies than everyone else.
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2:54PM on 08/14/2013
Or, they just genuinely love it, like most people that say they love it who've seen it.
Or, they just genuinely love it, like most people that say they love it who've seen it.
12:22AM on 08/15/2013
bro suck my balls eh
bro suck my balls eh
+31
11:48AM on 08/14/2013
Another bullshit "Dredd ripped off the shitty Raid the Redemption" piece. So tell me, how could Dredd have ripped off a movie that came out in 2011, when principal photography and 3D filming for Dredd started in November 2010? If you're going to try comparing this to another movie, try Training Day. Then at least you'll cover your misgivings about the Judge Anderson character (who I thought was just fine).

As for the "no comedy" thing, obviously you haven't read ANY Judge Dredd comics. I
Another bullshit "Dredd ripped off the shitty Raid the Redemption" piece. So tell me, how could Dredd have ripped off a movie that came out in 2011, when principal photography and 3D filming for Dredd started in November 2010? If you're going to try comparing this to another movie, try Training Day. Then at least you'll cover your misgivings about the Judge Anderson character (who I thought was just fine).

As for the "no comedy" thing, obviously you haven't read ANY Judge Dredd comics. I started in the 80's when they started being shipped over to the US from the UK. Dredd hit the dark comedy tone better than Stallone's shitty version. Were there a lot of dark comedy moments in Dredd? No, but that's because it was a tighter story that moved along at a faster pace. Less, in this case, was more.

When you've got a few decades of Judge Dredd comics under your belt, then come on back and re-review this movie and tell me what you see. Because obviously your view here is myopic at best.
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11:42AM on 08/14/2013
This one split the audience again into two startlingly different groups. I am on the side that says "We want a Sequel"
This one split the audience again into two startlingly different groups. I am on the side that says "We want a Sequel"
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11:26AM on 08/14/2013
So I leave a very lengthy and fair comment, that also pointed out the column hadn't been proof read and my comment gets deleted? Stay classy Joblo, I won't be coming back.
So I leave a very lengthy and fair comment, that also pointed out the column hadn't been proof read and my comment gets deleted? Stay classy Joblo, I won't be coming back.
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11:23AM on 08/14/2013

Do some research first...

Gareth Evans (director of The Raid) has openly acknowledged that the Dredd script was written first and the similarities are pure coincidence.
Gareth Evans (director of The Raid) has openly acknowledged that the Dredd script was written first and the similarities are pure coincidence.
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10:51AM on 08/14/2013
Nah, this movie is awesome.
Nah, this movie is awesome.
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10:49AM on 08/14/2013
I loved Dredd, but I also kinda understand what you mean and would have loved to see that version of Dredd as well. I've never read the comics but from your description it seems to me like Dredd is very much like Rorshach..and it would have been awesome to see a character like that bring some dark humor to the role. Takes some balls to write a column against Dredd dude, so kudos to you.
I loved Dredd, but I also kinda understand what you mean and would have loved to see that version of Dredd as well. I've never read the comics but from your description it seems to me like Dredd is very much like Rorshach..and it would have been awesome to see a character like that bring some dark humor to the role. Takes some balls to write a column against Dredd dude, so kudos to you.
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+1
10:42AM on 08/14/2013
I think this is the best "THE UNPOPULAR OPINION" ever - you sir, may be the only person I've come across with such an opinion and long may that continue ;o)
I think this is the best "THE UNPOPULAR OPINION" ever - you sir, may be the only person I've come across with such an opinion and long may that continue ;o)
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10:25AM on 08/14/2013

I'm giving your title a thumbs down.....This is NOT an unpopular opinion.

It's a common sense opinion to know that the movie sucked.
It's a common sense opinion to know that the movie sucked.
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+10
10:22AM on 08/14/2013

If we are going to discount comic adaptations that get the tone wrong

We can discount a bunch of comic book movies - particularly pre-Iron Man Marvel properties (and the Wolverine movies since). Burton's Batman arguably mangles a lot of the Dark Knight tone in his own gothic sensibility. As great as the 70's Superman flicks were - they even miss a lot of the golden Age tone and the sheer force. It's really hard to replicate tone and content from the page to film, just like it is costumes. Also - no title that runs as long as DREDD has stays consistent in tone.
We can discount a bunch of comic book movies - particularly pre-Iron Man Marvel properties (and the Wolverine movies since). Burton's Batman arguably mangles a lot of the Dark Knight tone in his own gothic sensibility. As great as the 70's Superman flicks were - they even miss a lot of the golden Age tone and the sheer force. It's really hard to replicate tone and content from the page to film, just like it is costumes. Also - no title that runs as long as DREDD has stays consistent in tone. Each writer brings their own voice.
It was a decent, gritty flick that took some elements of the comic, and ran with it.

It's clearly a movie that was built on a budget, hence the use of the Block Wars storyline. Is this the DREDD movie I've been waiting for? No. But it's enjoyable enough on it's own merits.

I definitely acknowledge that the film relies a little too heavily on some of the plot construction and the special effects.
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-12
10:04AM on 08/14/2013

Agreed...

I have to somewhat agree here. Another case of an underwhelming movie being cherished by fans on this site. There are a few reasons why there will never be a sequel to this movie, the first of which is that the Judge Dredd character is almost impossible to properly translate on screen without making it a joke. The majority of audiences will always associate the character with the terrible Stallone version from the 90's. Thankfully I'm just not sure that good Blu-Ray and DVD sales translates to
I have to somewhat agree here. Another case of an underwhelming movie being cherished by fans on this site. There are a few reasons why there will never be a sequel to this movie, the first of which is that the Judge Dredd character is almost impossible to properly translate on screen without making it a joke. The majority of audiences will always associate the character with the terrible Stallone version from the 90's. Thankfully I'm just not sure that good Blu-Ray and DVD sales translates to a Dredd 2.
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9:55AM on 08/14/2013

Just Saying

Even though I did enjoy DREDD. I have to agree that I enjoyed THE RAID more. I watched THE RAID with shitty subtitles that made no sense and loved it. I watched a better version and loved it even more. The Problem with The Dredd films is, like Maidy pointed out, there needs to be a medium. I actually liked both Dredd films, but both are missing something. JUDGE DREDD has great production value and humor, but comes off too cheesy. DREDD is more in line with the comic (minus the satire), but it
Even though I did enjoy DREDD. I have to agree that I enjoyed THE RAID more. I watched THE RAID with shitty subtitles that made no sense and loved it. I watched a better version and loved it even more. The Problem with The Dredd films is, like Maidy pointed out, there needs to be a medium. I actually liked both Dredd films, but both are missing something. JUDGE DREDD has great production value and humor, but comes off too cheesy. DREDD is more in line with the comic (minus the satire), but it looks low budget. If they could make a Hybrid of the two, that would be fucking awesome
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9:48AM on 08/14/2013
I picked up Dredd on DVD after missing it in theaters but hearing everyone shoot their loads over it. I have to say, Alex, I agree with you. In fact, my opinion of the movie may be even lower than your's. It doesn't even work as an action movie as every set piece is poorly crafted and choreographed with the exception of the scene with the gatling guns. The climax is especially poor with Headey's character being wasted. I'd say it's at least competently acted, but Urban just growls through
I picked up Dredd on DVD after missing it in theaters but hearing everyone shoot their loads over it. I have to say, Alex, I agree with you. In fact, my opinion of the movie may be even lower than your's. It doesn't even work as an action movie as every set piece is poorly crafted and choreographed with the exception of the scene with the gatling guns. The climax is especially poor with Headey's character being wasted. I'd say it's at least competently acted, but Urban just growls through the whole movie like he's trying to do his best Christian Bale as Batman impression. Maybe my expectations for the film were too high after listening to everyone rave about it, but Dredd amounted to nothing more than a generic, sub-par action movie.
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9:35AM on 08/14/2013
Haha... all those points you made, yet it doesn't matter because everyone is going to hang on your "Raid rip off" comment. Almost every comment below is basically addressing it. You kind of shot yourself in the foot with that one. ......Neutral because I didn't hate the movie but I didn't love it.
Haha... all those points you made, yet it doesn't matter because everyone is going to hang on your "Raid rip off" comment. Almost every comment below is basically addressing it. You kind of shot yourself in the foot with that one. ......Neutral because I didn't hate the movie but I didn't love it.
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9:26AM on 08/14/2013
Whether intentional or not, this column has a very bold, hipster stigma which perpetuates such associated mind sets. I always wonder, just as I do when those maggots (hipsters) run their mouths, if the sentiments being expressed are genuine and have anything to do with the subject at hand or if its just another self righteous, arrogant rant motivated by nothing more than to appear to be against something a large group happens to like.
Whether intentional or not, this column has a very bold, hipster stigma which perpetuates such associated mind sets. I always wonder, just as I do when those maggots (hipsters) run their mouths, if the sentiments being expressed are genuine and have anything to do with the subject at hand or if its just another self righteous, arrogant rant motivated by nothing more than to appear to be against something a large group happens to like.
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9:56AM on 08/14/2013
Ya, or maybe he just thought the movie was crap... which it was!
Ya, or maybe he just thought the movie was crap... which it was!
10:10AM on 08/14/2013
Contrary to what you might think - "Hipsters" is a little more specific than "people you don't like who are aware of popular culture."

I'm pretty sure the scourge you're so desperately railing against with your white-knuckled anger aren't actually riding around on fixie bikes in skinny jeans, horn-rimmed glasses and vintage ski hats.

That, and well, it's not like your opinion is any more valid (or generous to its subject) than what you're reacting to.

Another way to read your
Contrary to what you might think - "Hipsters" is a little more specific than "people you don't like who are aware of popular culture."

I'm pretty sure the scourge you're so desperately railing against with your white-knuckled anger aren't actually riding around on fixie bikes in skinny jeans, horn-rimmed glasses and vintage ski hats.

That, and well, it's not like your opinion is any more valid (or generous to its subject) than what you're reacting to.

Another way to read your comments are "I liked this movie. It really bothers me that other people didn't. I can't actually build a constructive argument in defense of the movie (because either the movie is deserving, or I have really shitty rhetorical skills) - so I'll just try to legitimize the opposing argument. I'll do that by characterizing the people making that argument as beneath respect. That way - my opinion will sound great."

You might actually feel better about things in life if your appreciation of something didn't need to be validated by universal support. We don't have to all like the same things - and ticket lines are shorter when we don't.
10:11AM on 08/14/2013
"He doesn't like the movie, must be a hipster."


Grow up.
"He doesn't like the movie, must be a hipster."


Grow up.
12:45PM on 08/14/2013
The point was completey missed. I thought Dredd was a decent, entertaining action movie. Nothing more. This isn't about Dredd specifically, but the overall impression I get from this column. Let's pick out movies with a decent sized following and tear them apart just for the sake of doing so--just because more than one person likes them. I live in Portland, OR by the way (smooveluv), so don't even think about trying to tell me I don't know what hipsters are. That's like someone in South Central
The point was completey missed. I thought Dredd was a decent, entertaining action movie. Nothing more. This isn't about Dredd specifically, but the overall impression I get from this column. Let's pick out movies with a decent sized following and tear them apart just for the sake of doing so--just because more than one person likes them. I live in Portland, OR by the way (smooveluv), so don't even think about trying to tell me I don't know what hipsters are. That's like someone in South Central LA not knowing what gangs are. The hipster mentality perpetuates irrational hatred of anything that becomes known--anything that exceeds cult status. If something garners a large following, automatically and completely regardless of its quality, "it's garbage." There's a lot more to it than that obviously (all negative), but that's what I was getting at. This column (again not just for this movie--the actual column) comes off that way every time *even when I actually happen to dislike the movie that's being trashed.* Hopefully that was clear enough, but I doubt it.
5:08PM on 08/14/2013
Vienna_Rage,

1) It's called The Unpopular Opinion, so of course it is going to be the opposite of what the majority feel. That is what makes it interesting and fun to debate about. Unfortunately Maidy isn't always the best at making cases and has a tendency to put his foot in his mouth, (in this case with the poor/incorrect Raid comparison), and everyone usually will focus on that one thing.

2) Not sure why I'm even bothering with this one but: You are incorrect when defining
Vienna_Rage,

1) It's called The Unpopular Opinion, so of course it is going to be the opposite of what the majority feel. That is what makes it interesting and fun to debate about. Unfortunately Maidy isn't always the best at making cases and has a tendency to put his foot in his mouth, (in this case with the poor/incorrect Raid comparison), and everyone usually will focus on that one thing.

2) Not sure why I'm even bothering with this one but: You are incorrect when defining "hipster." Gavin McInnes of VICE is known as the "godfather" or "creator" of hipsters, and all the term has ever been was to describe people who define themselves by the clothes they wear and music/film/art they are into, and have little to no deep understanding of said interests. Not "irrational hatred" of what is popular.
9:20AM on 08/14/2013
Okay, I guess you're entitled to your opinion. The only thing I agreed with in your article was the part about wanting to punch you in the face. But I kid. I liked DREDD I thought it was great. It didn't need the comedic stuff you crave. That funny business and stupid one liner stuff totally takes a person out of the story. It is such an 80's schtick. Stallone and Schwartzenegger delivered cheesy one liners in action films so many times it became a predictable cliche. This version of
Okay, I guess you're entitled to your opinion. The only thing I agreed with in your article was the part about wanting to punch you in the face. But I kid. I liked DREDD I thought it was great. It didn't need the comedic stuff you crave. That funny business and stupid one liner stuff totally takes a person out of the story. It is such an 80's schtick. Stallone and Schwartzenegger delivered cheesy one liners in action films so many times it became a predictable cliche. This version of DREDD discards pretense and cliche and formula. That makes it special in my book. It is over the top violence, serious as heck, but a good film.
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+32
8:46AM on 08/14/2013
Another "It's a rip off of the Raid" criticism? Could you please learn about the production histories of both films before making such a stupid statement? No wonder your opinion inspired the need to hit you!
Another "It's a rip off of the Raid" criticism? Could you please learn about the production histories of both films before making such a stupid statement? No wonder your opinion inspired the need to hit you!
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8:45AM on 08/14/2013

Neutral cause you're allowed an opinion but...

Some of the complaints you made aren't viable. The tired Raid/Dredd argument has been told and fixed more times than I care to remember. You say the film wasn't true to the source material, how many comic book films are nowadays. You might not have liked Anderson (I did but that's just me) but her inclusion in the film was necessary as a juxtaposition to Dredd, to question both his cold, violent ways and the system they both work for.

I liked Dredd, it was one of my favourites movies of
Some of the complaints you made aren't viable. The tired Raid/Dredd argument has been told and fixed more times than I care to remember. You say the film wasn't true to the source material, how many comic book films are nowadays. You might not have liked Anderson (I did but that's just me) but her inclusion in the film was necessary as a juxtaposition to Dredd, to question both his cold, violent ways and the system they both work for.

I liked Dredd, it was one of my favourites movies of last year and I'm excited to see it and hopefully its sequel.
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8:02AM on 08/14/2013

"At this point, you probably want to punch me in the face."

Got it in one.
Got it in one.
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7:57AM on 08/14/2013

Raid/Dredd etc!

Yes The Raid is a better film and by coming out so close together it was always going to be a tough sell. Dredd is still a lot of fun and the whole slo mo thing is a riot. Wish I'd seen it in 3d.
I also saw Dredd before The Raid so went in with an open mind and really enjoyed it. More than I expected to.
Yes The Raid is a better film and by coming out so close together it was always going to be a tough sell. Dredd is still a lot of fun and the whole slo mo thing is a riot. Wish I'd seen it in 3d.
I also saw Dredd before The Raid so went in with an open mind and really enjoyed it. More than I expected to.
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11:18AM on 08/14/2013
What killed Dredd was its marketing campaign, not being compared to The Raid. The Raid had too limited of a release to realistically compete with it.
What killed Dredd was its marketing campaign, not being compared to The Raid. The Raid had too limited of a release to realistically compete with it.
+31
7:49AM on 08/14/2013
How can a film rip-off a movie that's in production at the exact same time and in a different country?

And to say that the lines play like a bad rip off of a Dark Knight movie is to entirely miss the point. Of course they are, that's the gag, that he only talks in one note gruff one liners. He isn't Clint Eastwood, he's a parody of the image of Clint Eastwood (and Frank Castle, etc, etc). Clint by the way of Robocop. Even then he still has the same dry wit that Eastwood has as evidenced in
How can a film rip-off a movie that's in production at the exact same time and in a different country?

And to say that the lines play like a bad rip off of a Dark Knight movie is to entirely miss the point. Of course they are, that's the gag, that he only talks in one note gruff one liners. He isn't Clint Eastwood, he's a parody of the image of Clint Eastwood (and Frank Castle, etc, etc). Clint by the way of Robocop. Even then he still has the same dry wit that Eastwood has as evidenced in the great dry delivery of the "bullet might interfere" line here:

[link]

And Olivia Thirby was necessary to the movie. She is the audience, we react to Dredd through her. Without a 'normal' character with a sense of morality, Dredd would have no basis of comparison as a character. He simply wouldn't work and the film would be dour without her, or a character like her (never mind the fact that Dredd would also have NO reason to talk in the movie, other than threatening people, which I think you can agree would get old fast).

Admittedly I don't think Dredd is a INCREDIBLE movie. But I own it and definitely enjoyed it on a B-Movie level, it was a fun time, it's gore levels went beyond disgusting and into the realm of parody, the soundtrack was a bit of retro-futuristic fun, and everyone respected the source material. The only reason it didn't seem as "campy" as the comics is because it was supposed to be an opening chapter, erasing the memory of the Stallone movie and introducing this gruff, no-nonsense, action hero facist parody character. I'm sure a sequel would've opened the world up to mutants, multiple leveled highways and Walter the Wobot type stuff for Dredd to play off of, but the point is that no matter how OTT the world around him gets, Dredd takes everything. fucking. seriously.
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10:11AM on 08/14/2013
Check mate
Check mate
7:45AM on 08/14/2013
This is green frame because I thoroughly enjoy Dredd. If you want to make comparison, don't compare it with The Raid. Compare Dredd with Judge Dredd the Stallone version. I choose Dredd over Stallone's Judge Dredd any day.
This is green frame because I thoroughly enjoy Dredd. If you want to make comparison, don't compare it with The Raid. Compare Dredd with Judge Dredd the Stallone version. I choose Dredd over Stallone's Judge Dredd any day.
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7:43AM on 08/14/2013
Note about THE RAID, when director Gareth Evans saw the first footage from DREDD, he panicked and worked as fast as he could to release THE RAID first. DREDD is not a rip-off of THE RAID at all, everyone knows that since DREDD went into production first with an even older script.. If anything, THE RAID is a rip-off of Dredd storylines that have been around for decades in the comics.

Also the reason Anderson is an important and strong character is because she brings a sense of emotion and is
Note about THE RAID, when director Gareth Evans saw the first footage from DREDD, he panicked and worked as fast as he could to release THE RAID first. DREDD is not a rip-off of THE RAID at all, everyone knows that since DREDD went into production first with an even older script.. If anything, THE RAID is a rip-off of Dredd storylines that have been around for decades in the comics.

Also the reason Anderson is an important and strong character is because she brings a sense of emotion and is the polar opposite of Dredd who is cold and meticulous in his judgments. Anderson however is young, emotional and actually questions the system at times. Her chemistry with Urban was fantastic in my opinion. This movie has a great deal of heart as well in my opinion.
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+50
7:08AM on 08/14/2013

Raid/Dredd comparison

There was a 2000AD Dredd storyline in the early 80s called Block Wars where the Judges entered the tower blocks to take out known drug dealers.
So who 'ripped off' who?
There was a 2000AD Dredd storyline in the early 80s called Block Wars where the Judges entered the tower blocks to take out known drug dealers.
So who 'ripped off' who?
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7:37AM on 08/14/2013
Exactly.
Exactly.
7:38AM on 08/14/2013
Couldnt agree more, and werent they in production at the same time ?
Couldnt agree more, and werent they in production at the same time ?
5:00PM on 08/14/2013
No one ripped off anyone. It was a coincidence.
No one ripped off anyone. It was a coincidence.
6:58AM on 08/14/2013
I thought this was a good film. I didn't enjoy it as much as other people did but I think it got a lot right, and it certainly didn't make the same mistakes as the Stallone-starring version; far from it. I think Karl Urban nailed the character, the atmosphere and the design elements were spot on, and I think everything felt suitably bleak and a sense of, well, dread was achieved. I love Olivia Thirlby, she was great as the archetype of the fresh-faced rookie who might be in over her head but
I thought this was a good film. I didn't enjoy it as much as other people did but I think it got a lot right, and it certainly didn't make the same mistakes as the Stallone-starring version; far from it. I think Karl Urban nailed the character, the atmosphere and the design elements were spot on, and I think everything felt suitably bleak and a sense of, well, dread was achieved. I love Olivia Thirlby, she was great as the archetype of the fresh-faced rookie who might be in over her head but proves her worth by the story's end. The "Die Hard" formula...yeah, we've seen it many times, but I think it makes sense for a first film and do hope that if we get a sequel, we get to explore more of Mega-City One and maybe get a peek at the Cursed Earth.
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6:50AM on 08/14/2013
The similarities between "Dredd" and "The Raid" are coincidental. When "The Raid" started shooting (March of 2011), "Dredd" had already begun (November 2010). The indonesian producers only found out about "Dredd" later, and rushed to debut first.
The similarities between "Dredd" and "The Raid" are coincidental. When "The Raid" started shooting (March of 2011), "Dredd" had already begun (November 2010). The indonesian producers only found out about "Dredd" later, and rushed to debut first.
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