We were just as surprised as you that our writer on the scene at Comic-Con didn’t completely hate the upcoming revamp of comic book hero Judge Dredd. After a troubled production history and a trailer that reminded us a little too much of this year’s excellent action extravaganza “The Raid: Redemption” (granted, “Dredd” began production long before “The Raid”), we were all but ready to write “Dredd” off as a misfire akin to Sylvester Stallone’s 1995 interpretation of the same anti-hero. Still, we didn’t love the film, ultimately calling it a “visually strong, engaging but ultimately empty cinematic experience” – but man, are those visuals strong.
Perhaps those visuals are the key selling point to a film that still has the gall to throw “3D” in the title. We saw the first clip from the film, which was basically a speed ramped gorefest that would make Zack Snyder proud, but now another snippet has the hit the web, giving us a little more sense of the plot and overall atmosphere of the film in lieu of bloodshed. Karl Urban plays Judge Dredd, who is tasked with evaluating an eager new recruit named Cassandra Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) who possesses valuable psychic ability. On their first call, Dredd and Anderson respond to a triple homicide at Peach Trees, a housing project which has been overtaken by Ma-Ma (Lena Headey) as a production facility for a new drug called Slo-Mo (Meta?). Here we see the exact moment when Ma-Ma begin to shut down the building and unleash its denizens on the two Judges, pitting them against a variety of deadly killers with their suspect in tow. Yep, just like “The Raid.”
This writer can’t exactly proclaim any sort of excitement for what this film holds, but there certainly seems to be some folks who are anticipating the escapist thrills in this “video game procedural tied to great visuals, but one without deeper substance to make its experience remotely meaningful” (as our review put it). There’s no shame in that, especially with the film’s fine cast, and a script by sci-fi golden boy Alex Garland, we’ll just have to wait and see come September 21. You can check out the clip below. [Den Of Geek]