I am cautiously optimistic about the newest attempt at a Judge Dredd movie. I’ve long thought Karl Urban was an actor destined for greater acclaim. Then he got his starring turn, and unfortunately it was “Doom.” J.J. Abrams picked Urban to take on the role of “Bones” McCoy in “Star Trek,” for which he was perfect. This September, Urban steps into the role of the cult comic hero.
It’s not the ideal gig for someone hoping to become a box office draw. I don’t know how much we’ll see of Urban, as Dredd is one of the few comic heroes whose costume actually obscures his face.
A friend and I saw Sylvester Stallone’s “Judge Dredd” in a local movieplex shortly after the premiere. It was like a private screening. There were more people behind the concession stand than in our showing. The new take is pleasantly Rob Schneider-free. Keeping with a disturbing industry trend, the trailer released today is only 10 seconds. I guess Hollywood is taking the always leave them wanting more approach.
The comic book is set on a post nuclear war Earth. Most of the world is covered by barren deserts, and the remaining people live in sprawling “mega-cities.” The Judges are the well-armed protectors of these cities, and the nuclear holocaust hasn’t left society time for a whole lot of reading Miranda rights.
Judge Dredd and Cadet Judge Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) work Mega City One. They’re cracking down on a drug called “Slo Mo” that alters reality. The drug war is the handiwork of terrorist leader Ma-Ma, played by Lena Headey of “300” and Terminator:The Sarah Connor Chronicles fame.