I was skeptical and didn’t expect much from the remake of the Judge Dredd. If you saw the Stallone’s version you probably remember it as not-quite-that-great but passable sci-fi action. Aside from doing visual facelift and a more symmetrical smirk from Karl Urban there’s not much that could be done to remake that comic book based flick. Except this isn’t a remake, but a second take on putting original Dredd comic books on the large screen. And the movie turned out to be pretty cool.
Sure, some might complain about this not being a high-grade drama, but those kind of people don’t go to pure action movies. They probably also complain about the Expendables (both 1 and 2) and Kill Bill too. Dredd 3D is more like Kill Bill but with less katanas and more shooting, more explosions, more action.
“Standard” sci-fi things from the first movie (giant robot, flying cars) didn’t make it here. Grueling and dark semi-futuristic, but more plausible things such as even more crime, new super-drugs and urban warfare within one large building certainly did. Dredd did get a rookie-sidekick that can read minds (somewhat unreliably, but I would write it off to the heat of the moment) and a trusty multi-purpose weapon. The nature of the drug (that it slows down time) gave an excuse to include many slow motion moments, which, although being close to the “bullet time” is not as annoying and is made prettier. Bodies and bullets fly everywhere.
The outcome is pretty much predictable, but the ride itself is quite fun. Bonus points for awesome soundtrack, full of electronica.