Finally got some free time this weekend, which gives me the chance to do two things that I’ve put off for quite some time, write for The Circular and catch up on watching a bunch of movies that have been on my ‘To See’ list for some time. Luckily for me I can kill two birds with one stone.

Dredd

First up is Dredd, a second attempt at bringing Judge Dredd to the silver screen. The first question that must be asked is ‘is it better then the 1995 film staring Sylvester Stallone?’. Yes is the answer to that question but then again the closing credits for X Factor are better then Stallone’s Judge Dredd.

The Story takes place in Mega City One, A massive city constructed in a post apocalyptic America. Life is cheap and it is up to the Judges to maintain some sort of order. Enter Judge Dredd, tasked with taking a rookie recruit, with unique telepathic abilities, out for a field test. If she can survive the day and not screw up she gets to be a judge. The pair are called out to an area of the city notorious for drug dealers and criminals to investigate three bodies. Once they arrive it isn’t very long before all hell breaks loose and they must take on the forces of Big Mama, the kingpin of the criminal gang. And for the next 90 odd minutes we get to watch gun fights and explosions.

It’s pretty much everything I was expecting from this movie but I would have liked more. The film definitely took Dredd in the right direction and if they can build on this in a sequel they could really do justice (I know terrible pun) to the characters.

A film for Dredd fans, if it’s action you want get The Raid, similar enough story but much, much better.

John Carter

I’ve been wanting to see this since seeing the trailer during the summer. After it’s release the reaction to the film was mostly negative with a few rebel rousers singing its praise. I’m a terrible geek for sci-fi adventure movies and I hoped that despite the criticism it would be enjoyable as a lazy Sunday afternoon movie, after all it said “Star Wars for a new Generation” on the box.

I really wanted to like this film and I think I would have had I seen it 15 or 20 years ago as it feels more like a film from the late 80’s early 90’s. The characters are one dimensional. The costumes look like they were designed by a fan of Flash Gordon. The Wire’s Dominic West plays Sab Than possibly the most dull movie villain ever to grace the screen. The behind the scenes evil doer, influencing Sab Than, (you can tell he is a baddie from his British accent) is played by Mark Strong is not much better.

Visually the film looks good but you would have to assume that for a film with a budget of a QUARTER OF A BILLION DOLLARS!!!! with that kind of money they could nearly shoot on location on Mars or at the very least invest some of it on a few more screenwriters.

If it’s on the telly maybe give it a try but you will find better things if you scan the channels like car insurance adverts or that charming Barry Scot fellow.

Looper

My last film for this lazy Sunday is Looper, without a doubt this film is the pick of the litter. I was very much reminded of seeing the matrix for the first time, a dark gritty sci-fi that at first appears grounded in reality but then takes you to a completely different place.

The premise is that Joe, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, is a hit-man for the mob. The mob however exist in the future where time travel is invented and subsequently outlawed. The mob sends there victims back in time where Joe disposes of them and is well paid for the job. This all goes well until Joe’s future self, played by Bruce Willis, is sent back for execution and escapes. This is not good as Joe must track him down before the mob begin chasing him.

We really get a feel for the world the film takes place in with subtle references to technology, politics, and the economy placed around the film without having to beat us over the head with a “We are in the future” message.

What makes it exciting is that we effectively have two heroes who are on different paths that are intricately entwined and the final outcome isn’t clear until we see it.

It’s quite clear that Gordon-Levitt and Willis look nothing alike but we get so pulled in to the story that we let it slide. I definitely saved the best for last with this film and recommend it for anyone who has yet to see it.

Let me know what you thought of the movies or what you would recommend for a lazy Sunday afternoon.

Oscar Finn

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