Wednesday, July 15, 2015

MAD MAX - Fury Road - the movie

 See the trailer HERE

It was violent, full of heart-stopping action, and I loved that part. As far as post-apocalyptic worlds go, this one was quite believable. I loved that Charlize Theron (Imperator Furiosa) had an atrophied left arm and wore prosthetics. I also liked the slant on widespread physical defects due to radiation fall out, and the great value placed on perfect women, in hopes to bear perfect children.

I loved  that Tom Hardy (who plays Mad Max) broadened his acting scope and is finally an action hero, although he did have a stunt double (cannot blame him there). It bothered me that he wore a metal mask hiding most of his face for two thirds of the movie. It probably made it easier for the stunt double to take over in those horrifying scenes, but it took away from the actual acting. Strangely enough, this new Max didn't seem mad at all, compared to the old version played by Mel Gibson. He was the sanest person in the bunch. The ghosts of his past seemed added on as an afterthought. His guilt at losing his wife and child didn't seem to color his present life.

The vehicles, old cars, big war rigs and motorcycles charging across the desert in a cloud of sand were awesome, very imaginative, and obviously could take a lot of punishment. I especially liked the porcupine cars. No lack of hard steel in this post-apocalyptic world. Even the toughest military tank of today wouldn't last very long on that road.

I didn't care as much for the plot. Okay, it's a race through the desert to reach the green place. Three quarters of the movie are a breathtaking escape. Then they reach the salt flats, realize the green place is no more, and while she wants to push East, he convinces her in one sentence to return to where they came from and take over the empire. Really? Three warriors and a few pretty girls, half naked, with no skills, driving a big rig through three entire armies of raging lunatics? I didn't buy it. I didn't find their victory at the end believable. Nope. That was a let down.

At times I wished for an opportunity for the two main characters to express their affection and respect for each other. There would have been room for some caring. What I did believe though, was him walking away after the victory and leaving her in charge. Mad Max cannot be tied down. But then again, this Mad Max was way too sane and even tempered for his own world.
 Still, very much worth seeing.

Vijaya Schartz, author of sci-fi romance with a kick

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