This Week’s Underappreciated Movies

Every Monday, each of us will suggest a film that we feel too few people have seen.


Melissa’s Pick of the Week: Dredd

High octane and smarter than you might think, the 2012 cinematic take on the Judge Dredd comic is surprisingly good. It’s something like an extremely violent, futuristic, dystopian version of Die Hard, except there’s more for women to do and there are fewer wisecracks. Karl Urban is kind of perfect as Dredd: he is content to reside entirely in the trademark mask, like in the comics. He never shows his face, in a zenlike unity of man and job (if zen were really violent). However, if that sounds dour, it isn’t. Dredd doesn’t forget that it is essentially a satire, and the film never takes itself too seriously. If you can stomach the gore, Dredd is an action-packed goodie.


Windy’s Pick of the Week: Frequency

I’m a sucker for time travel movies, and this one has at its center a father-son relationship anchored by Dennis Quaid and Jim Caviezel. Jim is a cop whose firefighting father died when he was a boy, and who has struggled with emotional distance ever since. When he uncovers his father’s old HAM radio, rare and freakish atmospheric anomalies have him talking to a stranger that sounds very familiar. The movie plays with the time stream (and would give Doctor Who with his “fixed point in time” conniptions) and the consequences of actions, eventually leading to the father in the past and the son in the present teaming up to solve a decades-old long serial killer case.

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