Wow! He did it. George Miller’s latest addition to the Mad Max franchise is a winner. He managed to keep it true to the original two movies, yet bring the filming, acting and action into the current era.
Mad Max: Fury Road is an action packed chase movie right from the start, with barely a moment to breathe between action scenes. George Miller stays true to the Max Max form; he’s not going for bigger and bigger explosions. He doesn’t do what most modern film makers do. He does not attempt to keep escalating his action scenes. All of them are well done classic style action scenes. There are no impossibilities, no upping the action, just a constant stream of high quality action.
The entire movie is an imaginative dystopia. Throughout the whole movie you see the historic remnants of today’s civilization and how they would have been interpreted over a hundred years of survival.
This is a pulp action adventure film of the best sort.
*Minor Spoiler Warning Ahead*
The survivors in the Citadel worship the remnants of Detroit. They have an altar of steering wheels and the War Boys are like the beserkers of old. They spray pray their mouths with chrome before they go on a suicide mission so that they “…will arrive at the gates of Valhalla shiny and chrome.”
If you are a fan of the original movies then you will love this one. If you haven’t seen the movie yet then GO! And stop reading any further because I am now going to divulge spoilers.
**WARNING MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD**
I warned you that I would be doing spoilers, this is your last chance.
The film opens with a fantastic tribute to the original movies. Max (Tom Hardy) is looking over the desert with his car behind him as we hear news briefs on the story that led the world to its current state. Max is haunted by his past and those he couldn’t save. It seems rather melancholy, but you don’t have time to be bored or worry about the movie being too angsty because the Road Warrior instantly springs into action and flees for his life.
In true Max form you have a great chase, but it isn’t long before the famous black Interceptor is flipped and Max is taken prisoner. Max is brought back to the citadel where he tries to escape and fails. During the chase we get a good look at some of the workings of the citadel, the mentality of its leader and our last look at the Interceptor as she is stripped for parts.
Now that Max has been introduced (though we don’t know his name at this point,) we are introduced to our other main character, Furiosa (Charlize Theron). Imperator Furiosa is the one-armed driver of the War Rig, a weaponized tanker truck that carries water and gasoline between the Citadel and Gas Town.
The supply run between the two towns is a huge production and set up almost as a holy pilgrimage. A blessing (a brief explanation of the trip) is bestowed by their leader, Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne), and a gift of water given to the mutants and unwanteds below before the rig and its escort of protection vehicles leave the citadel. A clear, flat wasteland lays between the two towns so it is easily seen when Furiosa turns her rig from the path.
A war party is quickly assembled and Max is once again on the road with us, this time strapped to the front of a vehicle because he has been brought along as a blood bag for one of the ailing War Boys, Nux. It is now that we find out that Furiosa has taken five women with her, the harem and breeding stock of Immortan Joe.
At this point the movie gets a plotline (not that you’ve had time to noticed the lack of one until now.) It is a flight from slavery, oppression and death to a place of safety and life (sounds like the plot of Road Warrior and Thunderdome.) Max survives a spectacular chase and explosion then almost reluctantly works with the women, because he doesn’t really have much choice.
Immortan Joe is determined to reclaim his property and, as the chase continues, you see a relationship of respect slowly forming between Max and Furiosa. You also see the dynamics of the women and how each reacts differently to the situation. The women are united in their desire to be free, or die trying, until their leader falls under the wheels of a pursuing vehicle. Then, like any group of people, you see their unity start to fall apart as they each find their own resolution to continue the journey.
The ultimate goal is ‘the Green Place,’ a home that Furiosa recalls from her youth before she was stolen as a child.
The film rocks and there is way too much about the film for me to go into detail. I could wax lyrical about it for hours and not run out of material; in fact I have probably gone too long already.
If you haven’t seen it yet, get out there and do so.