by Ryan Rigley
"Dredd 3D" may have opened sixth at the box office last weekend, but it was first in our hearts. The latest "Judge Dredd" adaptation is truly one of the best action films of this past year, despite its lackluster number of ticket sales. Don't believe us? Go see it for yourself! Seriously, go see it or else they can't make a sequel.
Taking place in the dystopian society of Mega-City One, "Dredd 3D" sees Judge Dredd and his partner, Judge Anderson, waging war on a deadly gang of drug dealers. The drug in question? A reality-altering inhalant called "Slo-Mo," which does exactly what you'd think it does. As an officer of the law, Dredd has the combined powers of police, judge, jury, and executioner.
In short, he is the law — as well as our Hero of the Week!
Ripping a page right out of "The Raid: Redemption" playbook, "Dredd 3D" takes place almost entirely in a huge building complex overrun by dastardly criminals and drug pushers. Their fearless leader, Ma-Ma, is a former prostitute turned cold-blooded killer whose trademark is violence. She also has a habit of dosing her victims with some Slo-Mo before sending them to their deaths, forcing each of them to witness their own demise in super slow-motion.
"Dredd 3D" has a field day with this slow-motion technique, showing us several gruesome murders as slowly and as detailed as possible. It's actually this aspect of the film that makes it feel so much like a real adaptation of the comic book; refusing to shy away from any of the graphic details and, in fact, glorifying them with the creative use of 3D.
Judge Dredd, however, is what really makes the film brilliant. Karl Urban does a terrific job of chin-acting underneath that trademark Dredd helmet and when he finally says the words "I am the law," you truly believe it.
As we mentioned earlier, "Dredd 3D" feels a lot like "The Raid: Redemption" at times (which is not a bad thing at all). But while "The Raid" focuses on crazy martial arts, "Dredd 3D" instead chooses to make a spectacle of the many futuristic weapons and gadgets at Dredd's disposal.
"Dredd 3D," as awesome as it may be, is only the beginning of what could become the most epic sci-fi franchise in decades. A "Dredd" sequel would surely feature the Dark Judges of the alternate dimension, Deadworld, which means that we'd also more than likely get an appearance from fan-favorite Judge Death.
However, in order for a "Dredd" sequel to happen, the film needs to gross at least $50 million at the box office. And that's where you come in. So far, "Dredd 3D" has only made approximately $6 million domestically which is by no means enough to warrant a sequel. In order for that to happen, you need to go see "Dredd 3D" in theaters this weekend. Bring your friends! Tell everyone! Judge Death is depending on you!
Welcome to Hero of the Week, our weekly salute to the heroes keeping the comic book, movie and television scene something to look forward to day in and day out. From actual superheroes to the actors and filmmakers who bring them to life, you can tell us who your heroes are in the comments and on Twitter!