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Author Topic: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!  (Read 46992 times)

radiator

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #885 on: 08 May, 2018, 01:28:52 am »
Definitely in agreement with IP here (on all points).  I also strongly disagree with the common opinion that the Stallone version 'got the city right'. While there a handful of nice individual shots in the '95 movie - some of the matte paintings, like a sweeping view of the West Wall - vividly recall the comics and hint at a grandeur the production strived for, on the whole it's a totally generic, plasticy looking sci-fi dystopia - very little of it resembles the Mega City One that I know. What's more, the entire movie has that very dated 80s/90s soundstagey aesthetic.

The 2012 version of MC-1, while obviously a starkly different, stripped down interpretation;
a) feels far more coherent and consistent from a design point of view
b) feels like a real, lived in place rather than a soundstage
c) translates the general structure of MC-1 (the Mega Blocks in particular and the role of the judges themselves) infinitely more successfully than the 95 movie does.

With almost 6 years distance from the 2012 version, I have a little more perspective on it, and I certainly think there are some valid criticisms of it;

I still don't love the bike design. I think the humour and social commentary probably should have been a touch less dry and slightly more on the nose (as it was, it went totally over a lot of people's heads).
I think the colour grading is a little overcooked and at times it makes the movie look a little ugly.

On the acting front, while the leads are uniformly great, the supporting cast are a real mixed bag and there are some quite dodgy accents and line readings going on. And perhaps most of all, I really think that the movie would have benefitted from having one or two more action set-pieces - there are some sequences in the original script that it's a shame didn't make it into the final film, for instance, and it's a shame that the film really lacked a few more big moments that would have helped to sell itself in a trailer. As it is, it's really hard to pinpoint the standout action scene (which isn't great considering it's an action movie).

I still think it's a great movie though, and kicks the Stallone movie in the gonads in every single way.

JamesC

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #886 on: 08 May, 2018, 08:22:14 am »
I agree that Judge Dredd 95 feels a bit ‘Tim Burton’s Batman’. The possible advantage of this was that the world feels a lot more open than Dredd 3D in terms of the more fantastic side of Dredd. If subsequent Stallone Dredd’s had been made it would have felt natural for him to go to space in search of Owen Chrysler or to meet Tweek or go to Luna 1. I think a lower age rating would have helped Judge Dredd financially - it feels more like a family adventure film than the ‘R / 15’ film it was rated as.
Dredd 3D is more ‘Batman Begins’ in that it feels more based in our own reality. I don’t think the world of Dredd 3D could incorporate those more fantastic elements. Ideally I’d like the TV version to be somewhere in between.

ZenArcade

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #887 on: 08 May, 2018, 04:55:41 pm »
Totally with IP and Radiator on this one.  The reason the series is in pre-production and hopefully due to hit the screens in 2 years hence, is because of the extremly positive reaction to the 2012 movie and the ensuing clamour for more.  There was a crypt-like silence after the '95 movie (the feeling I had when walking out of the cinema was bad to put it mildly).
To ignore this groundswell, and to ignore what made the 2012 movie so real and impactive to so many people would be asinine in the extreme. Z
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Proudhuff

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #888 on: 08 May, 2018, 06:32:15 pm »
I liked Tim Burton's Batman, my fav of all of the movies actually.

I like that the 2012 Dredd didn't have the whole Boss fight thing that ruins every other action movie and a lot of Marvel ones too IMHO.

Most movies now have a big fight, an even bigger fight then a huge fight...yawnnn

I think Dredd got it right with the tension, humour and social... bring on the TV series!!
I call that bold talk for a one-eyed fat man!

Woolly

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #889 on: 08 May, 2018, 06:35:48 pm »
I think the colour grading is a little overcooked and at times it makes the movie look a little ugly.

Kinda see what you mean, but I think the biggest problem is that alot of the 2012 film appears to have been shot way too dark, and then brightened in post. Highlights alot of digital noise, and looks pretty ugly, as you said.
Thankfully its only at it's worst in a handful of shots/scenes.

Fully agree that the new series needs to meet a middle ground between the two previous versions.

IndigoPrime

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #890 on: 08 May, 2018, 07:33:18 pm »
b) feels like a real, lived in place rather than a soundstage
That's one of the things I really disliked about the Stallone film – there was just no suspension of disbelief. Even back then, the way it was done made it look like people acting in a big shed or in front of a blue screen. Many other films of the time just don't have that. (And is my memory playing up, or are there a couple of prominent landscape components in Judge Dredd that crop up in several supposedly different locations, because they re-dressed the set, but left in a couple of bits?)

I think a lower age rating would have helped Judge Dredd financially - it feels more like a family adventure film than the ‘R / 15’ film it was rated as.
Didn't they shoot for a lower rating, but – for whatever reason – not get it? Hard to know why, really – even back then, it felt like a kiddy film.

There was a crypt-like silence after the '95 movie (the feeling I had when walking out of the cinema was bad to put it mildly).
A friend of mine saw it the week it came out and I recall him coming over to talk about it when we were on our way back from some gathering or other. "So… how bad was it?" I asked. The look he gave me said it all.

I liked Tim Burton's Batman, my fav of all of the movies actually.
For what it's worth, I liked that movie at the time, and suspect I would now if I watched it again. It was bonkers and gothic and smart. Similarly, I'm fond of Fifth Element, which is in the same kind of territory in many ways. Stallone's Dredd feels part of that era in style, but it's just not a patch on the two flicks in terms of performances, writing, coherence, production, design, direction… Hell, Fifth Element's New York City feels like a better Mega-City One than the one in Judge Dredd.

Richard

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #891 on: 08 May, 2018, 08:38:44 pm »
There are several films that feel like they could/should have been Judge Dredd films, for one reason or another, and The Fifth Element is one of them, along with Robocop (1987) and Mad Max: Fury Road. There may be others.

JOE SOAP

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #892 on: 08 May, 2018, 09:37:07 pm »
Didn't they shoot for a lower rating, but – for whatever reason – not get it? Hard to know why, really – even back then, it felt like a kiddy film.

Kinda but not really.

Interview with Co-Writer Steven de Souza:

Judge Dredd was actually supposed to be a PG-13 movie. The production company at the time, Cynergy, they were having some financial troubles, so they didn't have any UK executives on location in England. And in their absence, the director (Danny Cannon), wanting to make it true to the comic book, was making everything more and more and more violent. So when the movie was delivered to be cut, it was rated X. It was rated X four times!

They say you can’t appeal after four. Four is all you get. Somehow, the producer, Ed Pressman managed to get it one more time to get it rated R. Which actually wasn’t a victory, because this was supposed to be PG-13. They had made a deal with Burger King, I think, and a toy company and you can’t advertise toys for an R-Rated movie, and no hamburger place wants toys for an R-Rated movie. So the hamburger people and the toy people turned around and sued Disney, the distributor!

Well, Disney then said, we’ll take this out of the director’s hide, because he signed a piece of paper saying he would deliver a PG-13. But Cynergy, who was releasing it THROUGH Disney, at that point had never done anything BUT an R-Rated movie. Nobody in the entire company had ever had the experience of putting that piece of paper in front of a director...so they had to pay him. They couldn’t withhold his salary for violating a legal promise they never asked him to make.

So at the eleventh hour, in a total state of panic, they decided that the advertising campaign should be cartoon panels. Keep in mind that this movie was about five frames away from being an x-rated movie. Their ad campaign was now comic panels of Stallone with word balloons. It’s complete cognitive dissonance!

Now, I’m innocent in this. I wrote a PG-13 script! Obviously, I knew how to do it! I did 8 o'clock network TV shows, for god's sake! In the script I wrote that the villain, Armand Assante says “Pull his arms and legs off, save his head for last, I want to hear him scream.” I wrote in the script that all you would see are the shadows and hear screams. What the director did, without any supervision since nobody from the studio was there, he had his prop people build an audio animatronic puppet, lifelike in every detail, with breakable limbs, and he actually shot the robot ripping the guy’s arms and legs off while the guy is screaming!

At the time, I lived around the corner from the studio, and they called me up when they got the dailies. It was the scene where they whack a newspaper reporter and his wife. In the script, I said it would look like your grandparent’s house, but decorated with stuff from now, since the movie is in the future. You were supposed to just see through the curtains a flash of the machine gun and screaming, and maybe one bullet hits the window. That’s what I wrote. When they showed me the scene in the dailies, this old couple dies like Bonnie and Clyde. Blown to bits in slow motion. I said, “Oh my God, this movie is supposed to be PG-13!” And they said, “No, it’s fine! the director knows all the ratings angles. Run it again!” And I’m like, “No! Once was enough! What did I miss?” He said, “They’re dry squibs! That’s PG-13! You don’t get an R-rating unless there’s blood.” I said, "There's no such rule! Who the fuck told you that?”

When they put the movie together, there were no alternative takes. The only thing they could do with that scene was to take away the slow-motion and kill them faster, and cut the time of the violence down a little. The payoff is that a few years later, Stephen J. Cannell pitched me to be the writer on his Greatest American Hero movie at Disney. When I pitched at the meeting, everything went great. After I left, Stephen called me up, and he said, “I don’t understand. It was all going great, but the minute you left they said: there’s no way that sonuvabitch is ever gonna write a movie at Disney. He fucked us so bad, we were sued by Burger King and the toy company for Judge Dredd. He wrote an x-rated movie for this studio!" I was persona non grata at Disney because of Judge Dredd!




JamesC

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #893 on: 09 May, 2018, 06:01:34 am »
That’s really interesting, thanks Joe.

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #894 on: 09 May, 2018, 06:55:37 am »
Sounds to me like there’s the potential for a much more interesting* cut of Judge Dredd lurking somewhere! Makes me wonder whether the late excision of the climactic clone battle was less to do with the clones ‘looking like shit’ (which I seem to have heard/read in a couple of places) and more the product of a desperate scouring of the movie for violence they could cut to try and get the rating down.


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JamesC

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #895 on: 09 May, 2018, 08:39:39 am »
To be fair to the director, he's not the only one to have struggled with hitting a PG rating on a blockbuster action film.
Batman (89) was the first film to be given a 12 certificate because it was too violent for a PG but they couldn't stand the idea of bumping it up to a 15 and losing so much potential income. Jurrassic Park was a PG with a special advisory that it wasn't really a PG but, hey, kids love dinosaurs. I think Spider-Man had a similar advisory on its 12 certificate (mainly because of the very violent final battle).

Richard

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #896 on: 09 May, 2018, 09:04:42 am »
The funniest thing about that interview is where he says Danny Cannon wanted to make the film more true to the comic!

JOE SOAP

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #897 on: 09 May, 2018, 09:21:42 am »
I think it much more disappointing we missed out on the stupendous irony of a potential Judge Dredd toy set being given out with the kids meals at Burger King.

« Last Edit: 09 May, 2018, 09:23:20 am by JOE SOAP »

Steve Green

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #898 on: 09 May, 2018, 09:30:08 am »
We'll always have the Honey Monster ad.

IndigoPrime

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Re: Judge Dredd: Mega-City One - TV show announced!
« Reply #899 on: 09 May, 2018, 09:46:16 am »
The funniest thing about that interview is where he says Danny Cannon wanted to make the film more true to the comic!
I get the impression that film was a tug-of-war between a massive (if fading) Hollywood star and an inexperienced director. And it was a battle everyone lost. Bar the opening and some bits of production design, nothing good came out of that film. It's not even cheesy and bad enough to be good (if you know what I mean) – Demolition Man at least managed that to some extent.