When I first saw the Dredd trailer in theaters, I was unsure what to think. It seemed like your standard dystopian sci-fi action flick: explosive violence, women kicking ass, distracting special effects, etc. After seeing the Dredd featurette posted on Yahoo!, my spirits were lifted a little, but not by much. At the very least, if the movie turns out to be a dud, the comics are there to explore.
The featurette goes into Dredd’s comic book origins with its creators and publishers. Showing glimpses of the comic series that began in the 1970s, Dredd gives us a complex character. He’s a harsh cop with his own views of morals and ethics, part of a vast machine hired to exact justice on others. Though I love the setting and plot, I still feel the movie looks a bit clunky. And I’m not just talking about Dredd’s ill-fitting helmet, which could have looked much cooler. The snippets of movie dialogue shown in this featurette are awkward, as well as Karl Urban’s gravelly Batman-ish voice. I’m a big fan of Urban, and Lena Olin, who looks to play the villain in this movie (you know her as Queen Gorgo in 300 or the love-to-hate-her Cersei in Game of Thrones.) What the Dredd featurette got me hyped for was trying the comic source material rather than the movie. We’re all familiar with comic books that don’t seem to translate well into movies, whether it’s the actors, director, script or a mix of everything. I’m withholding my doubts and giving Dredd a shot of course, but if it lets me down, at least there’s the comics. They looked stunning.