OK, first a disclaimer: I admit to a certain personal bias in favour of Dredd 3D. It was the first film to shoot at the Cape Town Film Studios, which in turn was the very first project to cross my desk when I joined the Cape Film Commission over a decade ago. It’s also the first African production to shoot in 3D. And it stars handsome Karl Urban, who I randomly bump into often enough for him to think I’m a bit of a stalker. In a futuristic, post-apocalyptic movie that largely shot in studio, I thoroughly enjoyed playing “spot-the-location” as the occasional scene hopped from the Apartheid era treasures of the Civic Center and Artscape Theater complex, and newer spaces such as Greenpoint Stadium and the CTICC – all visible icons in this city. And spot the Seffers in the cast too.
But otherwise, is it any good? Well, I suppose so. Sort of. It’s not Shakespeare or anything, in terms of lyric drama, and there’s an inordinate amount of blood and bullets. But I thought it worked well enough for what it set out to do. Olivia Thirlby was surprisingly good as the sidekick. The balletic Mr. Urban is somewhat betrayed by a clunky suit and the helmet over his face throughout. So no Oscars for this one, but worth taking out on dvd. Oh, and I really hate 3D – it just dulls everything.