Liam Rudden: Dredding cinema but not the DVD

IT takes a lot to get me into the cinema. I think it must be a reaction to sitting through all those weekly screenings of The Sound of Music as a kid.

Or maybe it was the trauma of The Jungle Book - not the film, but the sight of my baby sister screaming to Mowgli that Shere Khan was about to pounce... much to the amusement of the audience.

Or maybe it was the less than salubrious surroundings of Edinburgh’s infamous fleapits.

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On the odd occasion I do venture to a movie, the thing that hits me most is the impersonal nature of cinema. Sitting in a theatre, full of people experiencing a live performance is an exciting, interactive experience - an exchange of energy between audience and cast.

Watching a projection is just too passive. Blockbusters like Harry Potter and its ilk are guaranteed to have me asleep in 20 minutes - The Amazing Spider-Man being an exception.

So I waited for the DVD release of Dredd. I’m much more at home, literally, with a DVD, lights dimmed and cup of tea to hand.

Before watching Dredd - released next week - I revisited the much derided Sylvester Stallone version. I enjoyed it. Lightweight, it breaks the first rule of Dredd by revealing his face, but is still a great romp.

Pete Travis’ Dredd, with Karl Urban as the law enforcer, is a very different beast. Action-packed, gory and blazingly frenetic, it’s a dark look into the future, and all the better for it. Urban IS Dredd, never removing that iconic helmet. Let’s hope my next cinema outing, to see Les Miserables, is as rewarding.