frenetically and leaving you rather numb as it never ceases. Paul Leonard-Morgan’s biting , scuzzy industrial score follows the lead of the action and pulses around you, never swamping the scene but emphasising it brilliantly. (Rather bizarrely there is ANOTHER soundtrack which could have been used but the makers felt it didn’t quite gel with the visuals, even so it too is astounding for giving a feel of the Judge’s world. Check out “Drokk” by Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury http://www.invada. co.uk/drokk.) Olivia Thirlby, best known for her role as Leah in “Juno”, steps up to the mark and is believable as Cadet Judge Anderson, Dredd’s rookie. This is her first action movie and she handles herself well. Indeed to a certain extent this is HER movie more so than Dredd’s. She is the one who has the true story arc, whose character develops over the course of the film from nervous rookie on the verge of failing to full Judge capable of standing beside Dredd and dispensing justice to those that deserve it. She doesn’t ever achieve, or attempt, Old Stoneyface’s grim demeanour but then she doesn’t have to. Standing back from the film we can see that this is her trial by fire but for him, this is just another day at the office. He sums that up quite succinctly at the end. When asked by an arriving support judge what had just occurred he answers that it was a drug bust and the perps (perpetrators) were uncooperative. Back to the station, fill the reports and then out again for more.
The 3D in use here is primarily aimed at showing the effects of
a particular drug on the perceptions of those using it.” Now, some other reviews have concentrated initially on the 3D aspect of the film, and I usually don’t care for it since it mostly gets used as a gimmick rather than an aid to the story. Not so here .The 3D in use here is primarily aimed at showing the effects of a particular drug on the perceptions of those using it. Slo-Mo, as it is imaginatively named, slows down the perceptions of its users, so we see bullets tearing slowly through flesh in an almost balletic manner, similar to that seen of a slowed down rain splash. Then the POV will whip to someone not under the influence and the action ramps to the speed it is ACTUALLY taking place at, which is a pulsing wave of violence. Dredd 3D doesn’t pull its punches. This isn’t a kid friendly Batman or Avengers. People die quite horribly and painfully. That is the truth of the character and his world. No Spiderman style soap opera histrionics here. The second use of 3D involves Anderson herself, since she is a psychic and her visions and intimations, and in some cases mind control, are very deftly handled by the technology. To say more would spoiler some of the plot. Finally we come to Lena Headey, fresh from her turn as Cersei Lannister in HBO’s adaptation of “A Game of Thrones”, she slips into the scarred skin of Ma-Ma, the ex prostitute turned drug lord (lady?) who controls the tower block that Dredd and Anderson have to seize. She too holds her own, doling out controlled mania and cold brilliance that makes her character more than a cipheresque end boss
to defeat. And already I’ve said too much. Go see it. When it comes out on DVD/Blu-Ray buy it. It is a great movie and deserves to do better than it has. It topped the UK box office but slumped in the US. That is primarily due to two things, an unfamiliarity with the character and a retarded belief that rather than a reboot it is a remake of the 1995 film. So, if like me you end up liking this film you’ll want more. So spread the word, punks! Here’s the trailer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JqqgrUna28w and here’s an online comic book prequel http://www.scribd.com/ doc/104439907/DREDD-MAMA.
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