The plethora of remakes, reboots, and sequels to long dead-franchises in the last ten or so years has been the fuel for many angry film fans who flock to the internet to complain. Of course, such outrage hasn’t stopped many of these same fanboys (and girls) paying for movie tickets and turning these films into hits, but a tangible resentment toward many of these films does clearly exist. And yet, there never seemed to be any grievances with Mad Max: Fury Road, the fourth in a series which hasn’t seen an instalment since 1985’s Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Perhaps it was because Fury Road was not a cheap grab by the studio, but an effort from series creator George Miller, who had been trying to get the project off the ground for years. My theory though is that while the Mad Max trilogy does have a following, only one of the films really lived up to series potential (The Road Warrior of course), and the notion of a film striving to capture that yet again seemed more promising than an already accomplished franchise seeing a forced sequel. Sure enough, Fury Road has proved to be an inspired and creative film which breathes new life to the Mad Max franchise.
The film opens on archive footage, along with narration from the titular Max (Tom Hardy), revealing what has become of the world in this desolate future. Essentially, society has collapsed, with water and oil becoming primary resources for warring gangs. Max is a former cop who lost everything in the fall, now just trying to survive through the wasteland. Early on, he is captured by a gang who use Max as a “donor” for blood and organs. This gang/make-shift society is led by Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne), who controls a fleet of vehicles and possess a group of “wives” he uses to continually reproduce. These wives plan an escape with one of Joe’s key soldiers, Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron). Driving Joe’s “War Rig”, Furiosa escapes, inviting a large scale chase with Joe leading an army of eccentric followers. One such follower, Nux (Nicholas Hoult), needs a “blood pact” to keep him going, and this brings Max into the chase. Read the rest of this entry »