We’ll be the first to admit that we had our reservations about a new Judge Dredd movie. The 1995 Stallone version is still fresh in our minds as a typically-90s Stallonian bit of fluffy action movie nonsense, and while it wasn’t good, it is certainly the most recognizable version of the character to date, at least as far as the mainstream audience is concerned. Sure, it made a lot of sense to want to create a movie in which the character is as hard-bitten and gruff as the comic-book source material that spawned him, but remakes in general give us the willies.
That said, the more we see from the upcoming Dredd, the more we’re cautiously optimistic about the film. Karl Urban seems to effortlessly exude the cold menace inherent to the Judge Dredd character, the city around him is fittingly far less shiny than the metropolis seen in Stallone’s movie, and even the miscellaneous hired thugs who only exist to be shot to pieces seem capable of holding their own in a futuristic hellscape. Likewise, we’re big fans of the in-story explanation for the film’s bullet-time effects, though we’ve mentioned that a couple times before.
As for this most recent trailer, while a lot of it is material from the film that we’d already seen before, there is one crucial bit making its debut here. While we’re not fans of the idea that every action hero needs a witty catchphrase to punctuate his or her perforation of misanthropic jerks via automatic weapons fire, there was just something missing from Dredd. Something catchy, something punchy, something drunk twentysomethings might scream at one another during a giggly night of bar hopping and playing Halo in a friend’s loft. Dredd’s iconic “I AM THE LAW!” fits perfectly, and we’re happy to see it here in this spot.
Now that we’ve discussed our uncharacteristic excitement for this remake, we’re curious as to what you all think of this thing? Is Karl Urban an ideal star for this hyper-macho character? Does Lena Headey cut a menacing enough figure as the film’s key antagonist? Is anyone, other than Rob Schneider, sad to see that this new film is sorely lacking in the “former Saturday Night Live co-star tapped to provide comic relief” department?
No, of course not. That’s a stupid question.