MOVIE REVIEW: On the road again
An action movie franchise that leaps straight out of the history books to give you an outrageous look at how the world could end up. Carl Smith reviews Mad Max:Fury Road.
Two movies were up for review for this issue of the magazine. X-Men: Apocalypse, and Star Trek Beyond. One offering us an intriguing look at the prejudices associated with human genetics in society, the other giving us a look at the nature of space exploration and man’s responsibility to harness technology for peaceful and intellectual means. Unfortunately, both movies were extraordinarily boring. You can’t help but leave the movies feeling that you’ve seen it all before. So rather than tell you why you shouldn’t watch either of those movies until they appear on Netflix and you’re already pretty bored, we thought we’d bring you a cinematic gem that didn’t get the FLG treatment upon it’s release. Mad Max: Fury Road.
Just in case there are some of you out there who don’t know, Mad Max was a reasonably popular series of movies that catapulted Mel Gibson onto our screens. The last of the trilogy (Beyond Thunderdome) graced our screens back in 1985. In those 30 years, a tremendous amount has happened in the world we live in. Surprisingly, not a lot has changed in the Australian wasteland we remember Mad Max patrolling as the Road Warrior.
That’s what really makes this movie special. It’s not trying to fit itself into the current template of major Hollywood action blockbusters. It doesn’t have an over complicated, or ‘clever’ plot, it isn’t bathed in CGI, it isn’t making any grand statement or commentary. It’s just a very fun movie, that’s doing it’s own thing exceptionally well, and is seriously cool.
On paper, this movie shouldn’t work. The titular character is essentially a fringe player with a handful of lines. The majority of the movie is one very long car chase. And it makes very little sense. So why did it work? It made millions at the box office, because it does the simple things very well and delivers what it’s audience wants: to be entertained.
We work in a field with a staggering amount of start-ups popping up all over the place. Some fail, some go on to achieve great things. Fury Road is demonstration of an important lesson: if you do the basics right and give your target demographic what they want, you’ll do very well.
This movie could very easily have gone a different way. George Miller could very well have looked at today’s Hollywood blockbusters and just put a Mad Max skin on that formula. It would have been forgotten pretty quickly. Instead, he has put something out there that not only differentiated itself, but helped to reset the bar as to what you should expect from an action movie: something outrageously cool. If you haven’t seen it already, go make some pop corn and settle in for a good time.
Verdict: GREAT – 8/10
“An epic car chase through the desert, with flames, guitars, big wheels, eye-popping visuals, and breath-taking stunts. Asking for more would be greedy.”
- The guitar car
- All killer, no filler
- Imaginative design
- Could have made a little more of Max
- If you don’t like chase scenes, this probably isn’t the movie for you
- Immortan Joe is a little too slapstick at times