Dredd 3D (2012) Review

Dredd 3D is fantastic and beautifully brutal from the visuals to the sound. This film clearly learned from past failures and started with a very simple plot that is hard to screw up, this being done with people who clearly new the source material and from that knew that this was the best way to start a film about Judge Dredd. The only problems with this film is that it would need a more complex story out of the comics and an increased budget but apart from that I can’t find faults. So I would love to see a sequel which could easily fix the problems I found with this film and would love to see a Batman begins to the Dark Knight Style turn around. In other words it’s a great start.

The future America is an irradiated waste land. On its 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 executioner. Known and feared throughout the city, Dredd (Karl Urban) is the ultimate Judge, challenged with ridding the city of its latest scourge – a dangerous drug epidemic that has users of “Slo-Mo” experiencing reality at a fraction of its normal speed.

The best advice I can give to anyone going to see this film would be to watch it twice like me. It’s funnier than you would think it would be but also stays remarkably close to its source material.

Tim’s Film Reviews Recommended.

Story: 70%       Acting: 80%      Visuals: 90%      Dialogue: 90%

Fight scenes: 90%      Style/Sound: 100%      Characters: 90%

Total: 85%

Just as always I will not be giving away any spoilers so you don’t have to worry about reading this review before seeing the film. To start off let’s talk about the acting. The acting was very good for the most part but in saying that there weren’t many situations that required it although the actors played the parts they were playing as the characters so I don’t have any faults in that area, but there would have to be more of the film to really tell. The main character Judge Dredd (Karl Urban) was really top notch for portraying a comic book character in a real world environment, credit to him a great performance (the chin was particularly impressive). I would like to see more characters to interact with in a sequel because that’s what is needed to get a better feel of Dredd. Cassandra Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) was actually much better than I thought she would be and although not quite the same as the comic character she still gives the character justice (she kicks ass basically). Ma-Ma was an interesting character who I would have like to have seen more of but there is a prequel comic to the film which explains her back story which is free here if you would like to read that before seeing the film. Good strong female leads in this though which I like to see and the best is that it didn’t feel forced.

So let’s talk about something more fun like the visuals. The special effects, physical props and visual landscape shots where both excellent viewing and brilliantly immersive to the world that Judge Dredd lives in, very repressive and cramped with too many people in one place. The best thing I thought about this film’s visuals was that even though the budget was relatively low they didn’t use too much CGI but instead went for real props and building which means it didn’t feel cheap and felt more like a big budget film because of the detail put into everything from the judges uniforms to the blending of real world building and futuristic mega blocks. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the 3D but I am a bit biased because I tend to get used to the 3D effect within the first 10 minutes of films and find that it might as well be in 2D because of the length of a full movie, but if you like 3D there were some good 3D shots. I loved the Lawmaster chase scene and would really like to see more of the city itself in a sequel but I understand with the budget that’s the most they could do (I want a Lawmaster and the lawgiver, screw it I just want to be a Judge). Oh and I should warn people that it’s really violent but insanely fun with brilliant music, the soundtrack with this film really worked well and it was massively adrenaline pumped from start to finish with no time for boring.

Must Watch Trailer:

Oh and there is this Tarantino style trailer which I think is fun:

The best reviews I found would be these and they are quite funny “Travis makes the most of limited resources: the industrial backdrops are stunning, the action scenes sizzle and the eye-of-the-addict Slo-Mo sequences are sickeningly beautiful.” Tom Huddleston. This isn’t the funniest but it is probably the most true to my views. “A solid, occasionally excellent take on the character, with Urban’s chin particularly impressive.” Chris Hewitt (UK). I love that last bit which just keeps making me laugh. “Dredd is a rare reboot both necessary and successful, doing what Stallone’s stolid effort couldn’t with double the budget – excite, entertain, and stay crucially true to John Wagner’s unwaveringly dark vision.” Shaun Munro. Truer words have never been spoken (well they have but it’s still true). My favourite scene without giving anything away would be anything with Dredd kicking ass or maybe Mini gun bit, this doesn’t make sense really until you see the film but I want be ruining it for you so if you have seen the film then comment below and we can discuss.

Finally I would like to say that a sequel would be great to see and I would be sad if one didn’t get made. The possibilities are endless in the Dredd universe and could easily expand. I really liked the relationship between Judge Dredd and Cassandra Anderson because I got the feeling like it was kind of a buddy cop style connection with a rookie but because of her Psychic ability she is probably the only person who Dredd could have that partnership with, no romantic connection at all and there shouldn’t be, I actually think that would be the easiest way to ruin this film (or bring back rob Schneider). So go watch it because the film is a great viewing pleasure and I would love to hear everyone’s views about the film in the comments section so we can have a little discussion.

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About Tim The Film Guy

Very opinionated about films!

30 responses to “Dredd 3D (2012) Review”

  1. moviejoltz says :

    Great review, I am hoping to see this movie tomorrow.


  2. wordschat says :

    Hey Tim, I saw it just days ago at an Alliance free screening. This had awesome 3D. As I said on your Facebook (friend me) I thought the smoke was so real you almost cough. It reaches out to you. Agreed too if you have a good seat a 3D movie should become transparent and just bring you closer, feel more immersed. When done badly like in Resident Evil 3D it takes you away and reminds you that you’re watching a movie … a bad one at that. Enjoyed your review.


  3. Brian says :

    Nice review. The vibe I get from the trailers is The Raid with less martial arts and more guns. Is that close?


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      In the most simple way yes 😀
      The film is great and I hope you enjoy it as much as me. I also really liked The raid and think there is enough difference between them to make each its own level of good films, not proud of my grammar in this comment haha 😀


  4. Morgan R. Lewis says :

    Great review, Tim. If I’m reading between the lines correctly, you’re a fan of the comic book series? I’ve never read them, so my experience with the character is limited to Stallone. How do you think this film will hold up for somebody with that limited familiarity, or no familiarity at all?


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      Well to start off thank you 😀

      You need to forget about Stallone’s version, its nothing like the comics, but since you didn’t read them this doesn’t matter, the film is really fun and the character Judge Dredd is basically based off Dirty Harry so i’d use that as a reference to Urban’s performance which i really enjoyed 😀

      Some of the best parts of the comics was how simple it was which made it so even half way through the comic series you’d get it, the film does the same in that you will understand him instantly 😀


  5. The Focused Filmographer says :

    *hands over ears/eyes singing “lalala-lalala.” not listening/reading cuz I haven’t got to see it yet! 😀

    I DID, however, skim your review to see your favorable score…you lucky son of a gun…and, while I am not overly excited to see this, I am glad to see that it was apparently enjoyable.

    we shall have to compare notes after I see it.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      My review is spoiler free like i do with all new releases, but i understand if you would like to see the film before a full read. The film is really fun i think most people will really enjoy it 😀
      Come back when u have seen it, i’ll look forward to the chat 😀


  6. Aaron Mulholland says :

    Was actually a very good movie.. I loved how they put it al together, I hadn’t seen the one that was made previously, but yeah this is good stuff.. I can only expect a sequel if it does well, which i can’t see it not doing. Id have gone 80, 85 on the story considering it was a decent story line. I was never bored watching it.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      Glad u liked it, the film just topped the UK box office so I think a sequel will be in the works 😀

      As for the story it was too simple to give any higher but it worked great as a launching film for a series, some great stories could be turned into a sequel from the comics so I can see a future film getting 100% from me 😀


  7. Dan says :

    Good stuff. I wouldn’t say I was looking forward to seeing this (perhaps bad memories of the previous incarnation) but I am now! 🙂


  8. atothewr says :

    Sounds good. I will have to see this one sometime. I think they are talking about a sequel already – don’t quote me on that. Nice review and thanks for keeping it spoiler free.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      You should definitely see this film because it is insanely fun, currently they say if the film makes over $40 Million in the US then they will make a sequel, they say that because that’s where it will probably make the most money, fingers crossed 😀


  9. Novroz says :

    Great Review, Tim…you actually make me have a bit will to see the movie even though I am not a fan of the old movie.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      The old movie sucks total ass (sorry for language), its nothing like the Stallone one, it’s more like the 21st centuries robocop only more realistic 😀
      it might not be everyone’s cup of tea but its fun to watch and doesn’t slow down with a 90 minute run time 😀


  10. TheBruce says :

    I was going up and down on my anticipation for this one. First I was psyched out. Then I saw some of the initial trailers and stuff and my enthusiasm began to die out a little. Then I saw the raves it was getting and my enthusiasm went back up. Up and down, up and down. But I’m still going to watch it in theaters. Probably.


  11. Filmcraziest says :

    Nice review, it seems like a pretty cool film to check out!


  12. Victor De Leon says :

    Great write up, Tim! I can’t wait to see this one. It sounds like Urban and Co. do an admirable job here. It also looks like a very good production for a mid-budget sci fi film. Thanks!


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