Judge Dredd (1995) and the Comics

Started by Silver Nemesis, Sat, 11 Aug 2018, 20:02

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OUTSTANDING work, Silver Nemesis!!!

Judge Dredd has been one of those characters that I've had interest in for decades, but unfortunately never read much of his adventures from the comics. I only have a very, very basic knowledge of the character, and find this thread very informative on not just the history, but also how tied into the comics that the 1995 movie actually took inspiration from.

The 1995 Stallone judge Dredd is one of those movies I have alot of fondness for as well. As a young kid back in '95, I remember that summer being more into Batman Forever, and it's hype, than I was with Judge Dredd. I saw both in the theaters, but I remember seeing Batman Forever 3 times, and Judge Dredd only once. However, for some reason, once they both were put on VHS later that year, I distinctly remember re-watching Judge Dredd more than Batman Forever. Despite me being more of a Batman guy, that's what happened and I can't explain it. I also remember imagining a sequel with Stallone battling Judge Death (a character I was only aware of, but no real knowledge about), even though I was also aware that the chances for a sequel was slim to none.

I also recall Stallone stating in interviews his displeasure about the film receiving a R rating. Feeling that such a rating really cut off the legs of any possible franchise the movie might have had. I probably saw this on the E! channel when he was promoting the movie, and when the channel was actually good.


"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."

Thanks for the feedback, Joker. I'm glad there are other people who are still interested in these old nineties comic book movies. I think this film in particular has more fans than most people realise.

Quote from: The Joker on Thu, 27 Sep  2018, 06:26I also recall Stallone stating in interviews his displeasure about the film receiving a R rating. Feeling that such a rating really cut off the legs of any possible franchise the movie might have had. I probably saw this on the E! channel when he was promoting the movie, and when the channel was actually good.

I knew there was a conflict between Danny Cannon and the studio over the film's violent content, with Cannon favouring a grittier, edgier film and Stallone wanting something more along the lines of Star Wars. But until now I didn't realise Sly was one of the people pushing for a PG-13 rating. I'm surprised to learn that, considering he was one of the icons of the r-rated action era. Then again, he did support The Expendables 3 being toned down to a PG-13.

I've looked online for a workprint of Cannon's original hard-r cut, but I haven't been able to find it. I did however find this lobby card which includes an image from the deleted scene where Dredd massacres the Janus clones.


Quote from: Silver Nemesis on Thu, 27 Sep  2018, 19:52
I knew there was a conflict between Danny Cannon and the studio over the film's violent content, with Cannon favouring a grittier, edgier film and Stallone wanting something more along the lines of Star Wars. But until now I didn't realise Sly was one of the people pushing for a PG-13 rating. I'm surprised to learn that, considering he was one of the icons of the r-rated action era. Then again, he did support The Expendables 3 being toned down to a PG-13.

To elaborate a bit more on this, here's a video of Steven E. de Souza discussing the original R rated cut of "Judge Dredd". Some interesting information for sure.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GU2LxHKGWYI



"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."

Good clip. I still can't find a workprint of the original NC-17/hard-R cut. No one seems to have it.

I make no apologies for enjoying the 1995 Dredd movie. It's deeply flawed for sure, but it's still a fun sci-fi action romp with more re-watch value than most modern CBMs. I hope this thread will prompt other people to re-evaluate it. RoboCop is the ultimate Dredd movie, and Demolition Man is the better Sly attempt at something similar. But the '95 Dredd is still entertaining.

Quote from: Silver Nemesis on Sun, 26 Mar  2023, 16:16
Good clip. I still can't find a workprint of the original NC-17/hard-R cut. No one seems to have it.

I make no apologies for enjoying the 1995 Dredd movie. It's deeply flawed for sure, but it's still a fun sci-fi action romp with more re-watch value than most modern CBMs. I hope this thread will prompt other people to re-evaluate it. RoboCop is the ultimate Dredd movie, and Demolition Man is the better Sly attempt at something similar. But the '95 Dredd is still entertaining.
Okay. Probably never would've watched this movie otherwise. But this specific paragraph sold me.

I'll search JD95 out at some point and get back to you.

As long as you approach it with measured expectations, I think you'll enjoy it. No one's going to claim it's a great movie, but it is entertaining. It's got terrific special effects, plenty of action, cool cyberpunk visuals, a stellar cast (Stallone, Rob Schneider, Diane Lane, J├╝rgen Prochnow, Armand Assante, James Earl Jones, Max Von Sydow), a typical nineties buddy-cop dynamic, and plenty of cheesy one liners. It was one of the last big blockbuster films of Stallone's prime era before the macho action movie trend started to wane, and that gives it some nostalgic value.

Dredd '95 makes slightly more effort to engage with the fascist police state satire of the comics than the 2012 movie did. It would've benefitted from more of that satire, but then it's not really trying to be thought provoking or deep. It's a straightforward shoot 'em up in which the dystopian setting is the backdrop rather than the focus.

It was part of a wave of Hollywood cyberpunk movies released in 1995, most of which were not well received. Strange Days got decent reviews, but Judge Dredd, Johnny Mnemonic and Virtuosity were all met with negative responses. I watched Johnny Mnemonic again about a month ago, and while it's far from perfect it's also far from being the unredeemable train wreck certain critics made it out to be. I'd say the same about Dredd '95. Again, as long as your expectations are in check you should have fun with it.

Mon, 27 Mar 2023, 00:12 #16 Last Edit: Mon, 27 Mar 2023, 00:14 by The Joker
For me, the Summer of 1995 will always be intertwined with "Batman Forever", but I do remember liking "Judge Dredd" quite a bit, and it will forever be my introduction to the character. I even recall collecting a series of trading cards at the time, that largely covered the 2000 A.D. comics. Something of which, wasn't readily available to us living in the States (from what I can recall). I also remember DC Comics licensing Judge Dredd around the same time as well, but it was a fairly short lived title. The movie performing poorly no doubt didn't help with this either.

Funnily enough, I also distinctly remember having no trouble getting a ticket to see "Judge Dredd" even though I was pretty young at the time. I mean, I was always tall for my age, so perhaps that helped, but much like "Heat", to which I saw later that year, I wasn't hassled about showing an I.D. for a "R" rated movie. I guess whoever at the ticket booth just thought I looked old enough and didn't bother (lol). Another thing, was that I think, if memory serves, it was just me and some other guy at the screening. Can't remember if it was on a weekend, or weekday, but I don't think I waited long to see the movie, which even then, I knew didn't bode well for it's overall success. In addition, for whatever reason, my recollection is that when "Batman Forever" and "Judge Dredd" reached VHS later in the year, I revisited JD more than BF. Even though, back then, and now, I like BF more, but I guess I was on something of a Judge Dredd kick. Harkening back on this, my mom even made some sort of comment like, "You really like this movie, don't you?" or something to that affect.

As Silver stated, it's not really a outstanding film, but it's a pretty fun and highly rewatchable movie with Sly that was mindful of it's source material, despite the highly controversial decision to have a helmet-less Dredd. Very good cast as well. Flawed, but very enjoyable!


"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."




"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."