Mixed or average reviews - based on 29 Critics What's this?

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: 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 is the ultimate Judge. During a routine day on the job, Dredd is assigned to train and evaluate Cassandra Anderson, a rookie with powerful psychic abilities thanks to a genetic mutation. A heinous crime calls them to a neighborhood where fellow Judges rarely dare to venture--a 200 story vertical slum controlled by prostitute turned drug lord Ma-Ma (and her ruthless clan. When they capture one of the clan's inner circle, Ma-Ma overtakes the compound's control center and wages a dirty, vicious war against the Judges that proves she will stop at nothing to protect her empire. With the body count climbing and no way out, Dredd and Anderson must confront the odds and engage in the relentless battle for their survival. (Lionsgate) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 29
  2. Negative: 4 out of 29
  1. Reviewed by: Joel Arnold
    Sep 20, 2012
    Dredd works because it's an action flick with wide appeal that takes risks it doesn't need to - in its delightfully off-putting violence and daring style - and those choices pay off in a singular and exhilarating movie experience. It's savage, beautiful and loads of fun.
  2. Reviewed by: Stephen Dalton
    Sep 3, 2012
    Pitched at the right level to please original fans, but still slick and accessible enough to attract new ones, Dredd 3D feels like a smart and muscular addition to the sci-fi action genre.
  3. Reviewed by: Simon Abrams
    Sep 18, 2012
    Dredd is proudly degenerate - and it never feels compelled to slow down and explain itself.
  4. Reviewed by: Randy Cordova
    Sep 20, 2012
    This breathless science-fiction thriller isn't just gory. It practically revels in graphic violence, with several scenes shot in excruciating slow motion.
  5. Reviewed by: David Hiltbrand
    Sep 20, 2012
    For sci-fi action fans, it's an instant classic. For everyone else, it's a dark, bloody mess.
  6. Reviewed by: Jonathan Crocker
    Sep 3, 2012
    Grungy, compact and delightfully violent, Dredd wants to hit you as hard as it can. The sequel may be the movie you really want, but for now, justice has been done.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Sep 20, 2012
    The drug that Ma-Ma trafficks in, Slo-Mo, slows its user's brain to 1% of its normal speed. Dredd unfortunately makes you feel as if you, too, have partaken.

See all 29 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 6 out of 171
  1. May 5, 2013
    I was shocked to see how low rated this movie was. It is one of my favorite films of all time. Well directed, well written, well acted, with good chemistry between the leads, and a scary villain. This is an excellent film all around, a good war story, and it rings true throughout. Highly recommended. Expand
  2. Sep 7, 2013
    I loved this movie, I thought it was exceptionally done and I absolutely recommend it; It reminds me of movies like Sin City and 300: movies that didn't compromise what made their source material great to make turn them into a Hollywood blockbuster, I only wish that Dredd would have gotten the same love as the aforementioned movies; because a bigger budget would have only made this movie even better.

    Keep in mind it is an "R" rated action movie, so it's more of a Guy Flick; where most women will think it´s too violent (and I only say this because I can see that women are not quite Dredd's target audience, that being said I do know quite a bit of girls who really liked this movie), and its definitely not a kid friendly movie.

    The 3D part of the film is nothing exceptional for the most part but there are some scenes where it really pays off (the scenes with the slo-mo drug effect come to mind)

    The plot is not over the top like it is with most Comic Book Movies, so don't be expecting a movie like any of the Marvel Movies or most CMBs; instead it has a very simplistic feel to it (don't get me wrong this is why it is so good), its a straight shoot em up film in it's core. You don't need to know anything about the Comic Book to enjoy the movie and if you do you'll only enjoy it more, I also liked how even when they introduce you to the characters it's not really a beginning story.

    I saw the Stallone Judge Dredd movie back in the 90's and thought it was a classic Comic Book movie turned Hollywood. Two essential parts of the character of Dredd are his personality and his uniform and I always thought that by removing the helmet for most of the movie and changing the personality of Dredd they completely changed the Character, that together with softening the tone of the movie to an almost PG 13 kind of movie, and giving Dredd a comedic patsy sidekick in the form of Rob Schneider, were the reasons why Stallone's Judge Dredd was so awful. None of these things are present in Dredd (2012), this movie on the other hand is quite dark and crude which is very much the way Comic Book is.

    I also thought Karl Urban's performance was right on, it fit the character perfectly and I appreciated the commitment he put to the role by sticking to what makes Dredd so great, and not demanding to have face time in the movie. Judge Anderson was also done amazingly, both in in the writing and the portrayal of the character played by Olivia Thirlby (I absolutely loved her!)
    The only downside of this movie was the villain, although the Ma-Ma character was ok and fit well into the Dredd Universe, I still would have liked a better villain, one that played opposite of Dredd, instead Ma-Ma is just a common thug turned drug lord which is nothing next to Dredd.

    If you are not afraid of a bit of violence and blood on screen and are looking for a great movie to watch be sure to see Dredd.
  3. Sep 22, 2012
    The critics giving this a bad review either decided they weren't paid enough to give it a good one or have an allergy to extreme badassery. This is the most accurate portrayal of Judge Dredd we could have hoped for. And as for "no humour". There humour but it requires a strong stomach. Much like... you know... the comic did. Expand
  4. Oct 3, 2012
    The trailers didn't leave that much of an impression on me, and based on the box office, the same can be said with pretty much everyone else. It wasn't until the flood of good reviews that my interest peaked and now I'm glad I saw it and got to experience it. For those who aren't sure, go see it! I hope this movie makes enough money to warrant a sequel because it deserves one. I don't have anything negative to say about this movie other than Lena Headey's character was a little disappointing towards the end, she's set up to be this brutal, strong villain but then when confronted at the end she ends up being a coward and can't take on Dredd. True she wasn't that strong to take him on, but I expected there to at least be some sort of fight between them. The other thing is that it's not entirely original...? That didn't bother me though, since this movie was so well done and felt like something fresh. To those who are saying this is a Raid Redemption rip-off clearly have no clue what they're talking about since this movie was in production way before, and as much as I loved The Raid, it wasn't exactly original or groundbreaking either. Now onto the good things! As I mentioned it's not entirely original, we've seen the story and plot done a bunch of times but it's the way it's executed that makes it seem fresh again. I liked how well they illustrate what the city life is like: poor, filthy, and full of crime. It really made me even more invested in this world. For a movie with a budget of around $45 million the effects are surprisingly well done. It could probably compete alongside some of the bigger budgeted films of the summer. The 3-D, unlike most of the movies that have come out in 3-D, is surprisingly well done. This is probably one of the best uses of 3-D this year so far alongside The Avengers, Prometheus, and yes Step up Revolution. I guess it's because like those movies, it was shot in 3-D. I only noticed mild blurriness, particularly during some of the action scenes but it wasn't discomforting to the eyes. Other than that the 3-D was good, it was mostly clear, wasn't murky, and there wasn't any low lighting that I noticed. It wasn't used as a gimmick like most 3-D is, the best are the slo-mo scenes in 3-D. While I wouldn't call the characters three-dimensional(no pun intended) at least there was some characterization, which, I hate to say it The Raid lacked. I cared about these two judges, I was rooting for them the whole time and if you can manage to get me to do that, that's a big plus in my book. The actors all managed to play their characters well. Lena Headey was great with her over-the-top performance as the evil Ma-ma. Olivia Thirlby also stood out as playing the Psychic. I thought she did a great job with her transformation if you want to call it that. She seems nervous and a little scared in the beginning and it seems like she's definitely not cut out to be a Judge, the best example would be when she has to shoot someone and she can't find it in herself. Then she just turns into a complete bad ass, killing people like it's nothing and wanting to get out at no cost. I also liked how she wasn't a damsel in distress when she gets taken, she shows that she is capable of handling herself. I was afraid the movie was going to veer into that cliched path but luckily it didn't and I was pleasantly surprised by that. I was also pleasantly surprised by Karl Urban. I was skeptic of him because he does not strike me as an action/superhero-like person but he proved me wrong sort of like how Ryan Gosling proved me wrong last year with Drive. It's nice to see this happen once in a while and Karl Urban shows that he has no problem playing the role. I personally can't see anyone else playing this character but him now. He is one bad ass. This movie is definitely not for the squeamish as I found myself once in a while squirming around in my seat. The action scenes are well-shot, there's no obnoxious shaky-cam that'll give you a headache afterwards. The pulse-pounding score elevates the action and tension. It's sad that scores like these get unnoticed by the academy. Overall, this is one of the biggest surprises to me of 2012 so far. I didn't think I'd enjoy as much as I did. Sure it's not original but who cares when it's done as well as this. The Ma-Ma(Lena Headey) thing was disappointing but not so much that it completely ruined my enjoyment of the film because everything else was fantastic. The characters, the special effects, the score, the acting, and the well-shot action scenes all elevate the proceedings dramatically. This is such a great and fun movie that it should appeal to people outside of the action-junky demographic. Expand
  5. Dec 22, 2012
    A high octane rollercoaster ride which is ultra -violent, gritty, surreal, and raw in true comic book adaptation. This films lowish production values show true inspiration instead of the hogwash which sometimes comes from those with over-exaggerated budgets. While quite rough in places and might have had a better polish in certain parts. It is a must see for those who appreciate this genre. I have given this film a lesser rating because when watching this film I am reminded of The Raid Redemption another great film, although this being different in its effect I believe it to have burrowed some of it's idea's from. Expand
  6. Sep 23, 2012
    Urban's Dredd is to Stallone's Dredd as Bale's Batman is to Keaton's Batman: lots more realism. Of course, I enjoyed both versions of each but that's the biggest distinction. Also, apparently, Dredd must have a hot rookie sidekick and Olivia Thirlby does not disappoint as the successor to Diane Lane. The villains hit all the right Megacity notes though they are neutered a bit by a bad case of the "talk too much" trope. Some wisecrack lines but nothing funny about this Dredd and that's a good thing. Of course, the Lawgiver shines in this version too. Buckets and buckets of practically unedited blood and gore. A faithful adaptation of the comic though the ending wasn't completely satisfying. Expand
  7. Feb 23, 2014
    This is the first film that I have ever refused to watch; I would not continue to watch it after renting it from Blockbuster. I did not like this movie for it's romantization of: Drug Use, Rape and Gore. Humanity has to have a line somewhere and this film crossed that line. Expand

See all 171 User Reviews


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