Mad Max: Fury Road movie review: warlords is hell

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Mad Max Fury Road green light

Astonishing. Achieves its grotesque, magnificent brutality in an old-fashioned way that serves as a smackdown to bloated, sterile CGI monstrosities.
I’m “biast” (pro): big sci-fi fan; love Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

Bubbling up in conversations I’ve had with other critics and film fans recently has been a recurring debate: What is the future of the action movie? Where can the genre go from the bloated, calculated CGI monstrosities it has been vomiting up lately? (Even the mostly enjoyable ones seem to culminate in frenetic cartoons of stuff whizzing around banging into other stuff in ways that barely even register with the eye, and which seems deliberately designed to be incoherent.) Actually, it’s not even a debate, really: no one seems to have any idea where action might move, and most likely, whatever the next step is will hit us out of the blue, like how Lethal Weapon and Die Hard made us realize we didn’t know we required comedy with our action in the late 80, and how The Matrix blindsided us with the possibilities of CGI in 1999.

So: If the genre requires a refreshening every dozen years or so, we’re overdue. Mad Max: Fury Road might not be that refreshening, but if it isn’t, it’s most definitely a reminder than the refreshening is desperately needed, and a hint of what that refreshening might feel like. (It feels good!) Fury Road is astonishing in a way that makes you feel like you haven’t seen a true action movie in a while, by underscoring how sterile and cold what has passed for the genre has been. If it doesn’t represent a refreshening, it’s only because it achieves its grotesque, magnificent brutality in an old-fashioned way: with a simple, straightforward good-versus-evil story set in a carefully conceived imaginary world brought to visceral plausibility through the sheer physicality of capturing on film real people doing real things in the real world.

Even the most lovingly produced and technically accurate CGI could not have replicated the dusty authenticity of putting actors and stunt performers in actual vehicles and racing — and crashing! — them in a genuine desert. (The film was shot in New South Wales and Namibia.) Which is what Australian cinematic maestro George Miller (Happy Feet Two, Babe: Pig in the City) has done for his return to the postapocalyptic, water- and gas-thirsty future he created in 1979’s Mad Max. There are no green screens here, and CGI is used so sparingly that it’s barely noticeable as FX even when your head tells you it must be so, like how it lets an able-bodied actor play a character who has lost the left arm below the elbow. The bulk of the film consists of vehicular warfare carried out across sandblasted landscapes, and it is an assault on the senses in a good way, in the way that action movies used to be before they were disconnected from the physics of how the real world operates, and the sweat and the fear of how the human body responds to danger. (Turns out we feel it more, too, safe in our cinema seats, when the danger human bodies are in onscreen is this palpable.)

And unlike with many of its genre brethren, the story here is not beside the point. It ends up being the actual point along many different and unlikely vectors. Warlord Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne) thinks he’s sending his trusted Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron: A Million Ways to Die in the West, Prometheus) on a mission to bring back fuel from Gas Town to the Citadel he rules with an iron fist (he controls the water), but she’s got a secret mission of her own: to free the enslaved “breeders” of Joe’s genetically pure children and bring them to the “Green Place” far away she remembers from her own childhood. (The radiation still hanging around from the time when the world was killed is causing many mutations.) The battles pit Joe’s army against Furiosa, who is more than a match in her “War Rig,” plus she has some previously enlisted allies for her journey. She hadn’t planned on loner Max (Tom Hardy: Child 44, The Drop) being part of her crew, but that happens accidentally when–

Well, I’ll leave that you to find out. When I say that Fury Road is grotesque, I don’t mean only that it’s jam-packed with the sort of nasty postapocalyptic production design that Miller invented. It is that, crammed with biological trophies, spiky armor, and other horrors that Miller has now reinvented so that his film does not feel as if it’s full of easy shorthand clichés like most of the other movies that have borrowed it. No, I also mean that Miller’s vision of this cruel future is monstrous in some almost unthinkable ways, one of which is how Max comes to be caught up in events. (Max, by the way, is not the hero here. This is all Furiosa’s story, and that of the women she is helping. At best, he becomes her sidekick.) Miller’s world employs tropes of sci-fi and particularly of postapocalyptic stories in ways that smack them down, that insist that whatever horrors of human nature that the end of civilization may bring out, those horrors will not go unrebelled against. Immortan Joe, among his many other crimes against humanity, has reduced women to beasts, to farm animals… but that doesn’t mean they like it or accept it. There are no damsels in distress here: there are angry women fighting back and rescuing themselves. (The “wives” of Joe are played by Zoë Kravitz [Insurgent, X-Men: First Class], Rosie Huntington-Whiteley [Transformers: Dark of the Moon], Riley Keough [Magic Mike, The Runaways], Abbey Lee, and Courtney Eaton.) Miller depicts warlordism as something truly shocking and degenerate, and whatever signifiers of “cool” he may deploy in his massive conflagrations of cars and men — such as the battle “piper” on what could be called an Amplifier Rig playing an electric guitar that shoots fire to egg on Joe’s troops as they swarm to war — will later get a smackdown, a reminder that Joe is the villain here, and that he is not cool.

Shorter Fury Road: Women are not going to be your sexbots in the afterscape, assholes. I fear this is going to upset some fans of the genre. They deserve upsetting.

Miller’s critique of warlordism could be said to extend to the sorts of filmmakers who try to control every aspect of their films down the tiniest detail — the sort of control that CGI allows — instead of letting unpredictable reality rule. The religious worship Joe inspires, by calculated plan, in his young soldiers, such as fervently devoted Nux (Nicholas Hoult: X-Men: Days of Future Past, Jack the Giant Slayer), is of course destined only for disillusionment and disappointment when its absurd promises go unfulfilled. The promises of warlord directors, tweaking every drop of rain onscreen, every splatter of blood, every screech of tires, can tend toward much the same disillusionment. Freedom and surprise are better, and more fun.


See also my #WhereAreTheWomen rating of Mad Max: Fury Road for its representation of girls and women.

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Enjoi1991
Enjoi1991
Wed, May 13, 2015 2:07pm

“Shorter Fury Road: Women are not going to be your sexbots in the afterscape, assholes. I fear this is going to upset some fans of the genre. They deserve upsetting.”
The hell is that supposed to mean? You think fans of this genre want women to be “sexbots”?
Anyways I’m pretty surprised you liked a film like this.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Enjoi1991
Wed, May 13, 2015 2:37pm

Note, the reviewer used the word “some”, you wrote a sentence that conflates all action film fans with the “some” she referenced.

MisterAntrobus
MisterAntrobus
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 15, 2015 4:49pm

We can’t be bothered to pay attention to sentence structure when there’s a feminist on the loose, having opinions and stuff!

Enjoi1991
Enjoi1991
reply to  MisterAntrobus
Sun, May 17, 2015 5:29am

I saw the “some” in the sentence. I just didn’t hear about anyone being upset about the female aspects of Fury Road until recently.

Enjoi1991
Enjoi1991
reply to  LaSargenta
Sun, May 17, 2015 5:28am

Yeah, I really just didn’t hear about the people that were mad about it. Its a little ridiculous that will upset them.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Enjoi1991
Wed, May 13, 2015 3:24pm

You think fans of this genre want women to be “sexbots”?

I know it: http://wehuntedthemammoth.com/2015/05/12/furious-about-furiosa-misogynists-are-losing-it-over-charlize-therons-starring-role-in-mad-max-fury-road/

Anyways I’m pretty surprised you liked a film like this.

Why?

MisterBongwater
MisterBongwater
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Wed, May 13, 2015 5:39pm

I’m going to consider the last bit of that article some dark satire so I can get to sleep at night.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  MisterBongwater
Wed, May 13, 2015 8:27pm

Poe’s Law appears to be a factor there.

Enjoi1991
Enjoi1991
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Sun, May 17, 2015 5:26am

Wow. Thats is straight up ridiculous (the “fans” that are upset about Fury Road having a leading bad ass female). I didn’t realize “fans” were upset about that.
As for the second part, Idk I just thought you wouldn’t of liked the style/tone of it. Not complaining though, its a damn good film.

The Movie Waffler
reply to  Enjoi1991
Wed, May 13, 2015 3:39pm

I think the movie is getting a little too much credit re its feminist stance. After all, Theron rescues the hot young girls yet does nothing to help the older obese women being used as human dairy farms. The film critiques the male gaze while at the same time indulging in it. Very enjoyable movie though and hopefully will spark a return to old school coherent action set pieces.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  The Movie Waffler
Wed, May 13, 2015 3:54pm

MAJOR SPOILER

I think we can presume some major changes will be happening at the Citadel for everyone who was under Joe’s thumb.

Miguel Gonzalez
Miguel Gonzalez
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Fri, Jun 12, 2015 2:21am

Also, she needed to pick her battles, and choose the women most likely to survive, the younger and physically stronger ones. It’s in no way an indication that ‘Furiosa’ (or the writer) doesn’t care about the older women.

G-Man
G-Man
Wed, May 13, 2015 4:09pm

Just another reviewer conforming to what those in this Politically Correct era want to hear. “Yeah, suck it *men*, we ain’t gonna be your slaves in the future!!” An extension of the retarded modern-era belief that being a complete woman requires being anti-male.

Looked at objectively, if the world really becomes this desperate, of course women will become the chattel of men. Or do you think the sex slaves of Boko Haram are currently achieving their freedom by somersaulting through the air in slow motion, grabbing their captor’s ak-47s, and mowing them down in hail of righteous gunfire while striking an Angelina Jolie pose?

Absurd and lame. Also if the previews are any indication, the film is chock full of CGI and excessive color correction.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  G-Man
Wed, May 13, 2015 5:04pm

Not wanting to be a sex slave = anti-male? You’re saying wanting sex slaves is a normal guy thing, and *I’m* the one who hates men?

And you obviously didn’t read my review if you think the film is chock full of CGI.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Wed, May 13, 2015 5:25pm

No, saying things like: “Shorter Fury Road: Women are not going to be your sexbots in the afterscape, assholes. I fear this is going to upset some fans of the genre. They deserve upsetting” is anti-male. It is assuming the fanbase of such a film are sexist pigs, which is an assumption that in itself is sexist.

The film IS chock full of CGI. The trailer is made up almost entirely of CGI enhanced shots. But you haven’t the first idea of what CGI is or isn’t, which is why you’re so willing to follow the press packet.

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  G-Man
Wed, May 13, 2015 6:20pm

She’s not speaking out against men, or against Mad Max fans. She’s speaking out against sexist pigs. Even a quick glance at this discussion thread, and the linked articles, shows there are way too many of those in the world.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  G-Man
Wed, May 13, 2015 8:28pm

*pats* There there, it’ll be ok. We won’t let the mean nasty woman-things come and get you.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Thu, May 14, 2015 2:10am

You really don’t get it, do you? But keep parroting those Social Justice Warrior talking points, I’m sure you feel you are making a difference.

Damian Barajas
Damian Barajas
reply to  G-Man
Sat, May 16, 2015 1:45am

Don’t you? I mean, Think you’re making a difference.

Would you just say what you mean and let your argument stand or fall on its own merits? What do you think of the movie?

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Damian Barajas
Sat, May 16, 2015 11:43am

This guy has been banned, so don’t expect a reply.

Shiraz
Shiraz
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Thu, Jun 18, 2015 5:38am

Thank god.

MisterAntrobus
MisterAntrobus
reply to  G-Man
Fri, May 15, 2015 5:38pm

“It is assuming the fanbase of such a film are sexist pigs . . . ”

No, you’re assuming that MaryAnn’s statement that *some* fans who are sexist pigs equals all fans of the action genre. Which is clearly not the case, or she would not have used the word some, as indeed LaSargenta pointed out up the thread.

In fact, even if all fans of the action genre *were* sexist pigs, that still wouldn’t make her statement anti-male, as there are plenty of males who are not fans of action movies.

Paul Wartenberg
reply to  G-Man
Sat, May 16, 2015 2:43am

with regards to the CGI, the only blatant CGI elements are the massive sandstorm the first half of the movie delves into, and the use of 3D at-ya shots of projectiles coming out of the screen. The use of CGI to make Charlize one-armed was actually very subtle. Everything else – the cars smashing into each other, fire effects, flying bodies – was done with practical stunt work. Compared to the Star Wars prequels, Fury Road is old-school.

And with regards to the political statements about the objectification / enslavement of women, movies have been used to warn us/enlighten us about social injustices ALL THE TIME. (I Was a Fugitive from a Chain Gang springs to mind as an early example)

When I went to see this movie tonight, most of the attendees were guys like me. NONE OF US quailed or turned away from the sight of women being awesome in the face of male oppression.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Paul Wartenberg
Sat, May 16, 2015 11:53am

This guy has been banned, so don’t expect a reply.

Paul Wartenberg
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Sat, May 16, 2015 2:31pm

well, if he replied back I would have just added “I said what needed to be said” and then throw in a “neener neener” or two… so it’s all good. :)

Harold Hill
Harold Hill
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Wed, May 20, 2015 7:53pm

MaryAnn, I don’t understand why you banned this person.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Harold Hill
Wed, May 20, 2015 8:36pm

There’s some comments that have been removed. Those are the reasons. She left the ones that were cogent and less bigoted.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Harold Hill
Thu, May 21, 2015 7:29am

He went on an anti-semitic rant that wasn’t only offensive but also off-topic.

Shiraz
Shiraz
reply to  Harold Hill
Thu, Jun 18, 2015 5:39am

You don’t? I do.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
Wed, May 13, 2015 4:49pm

Some background to explain the influx of terrified little boys: http://t.co/VBKXBgdSzF

Probably best to pat their little heads, assure them there are no feminist monsters in their closets, and send them back outside to play.

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Wed, May 13, 2015 5:16pm

I love this quote:

Misogynists might be the first people to dismiss complaints about representation with time-honored comments like “she’s ‘just’ a character” or “it’s ‘just’ a movie/book/video game,” but by admitting they’re threatened by Charlize Theron and Emilia Clarke’s bad-assery, Clarey and his commenters are also agreeing that the media we consume and the stories we tell are hugely important.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  Danielm80
Thu, May 14, 2015 2:17am

I love how people endlessly project and strawman, rather than honestly investigating the facts. It’s quite possible, you know, that rather than being intimidated, many modern men are simply tired of the intellectual straitjacket that requires all modern female protagonists to be only a certain kind of “badass” and “strong”. Those who are even more intelligent and perceptive will realize this is as restrictive as previous restrictive gender roles. In fact, if said intelligent and perceptive people were also well-educated, they might know how and why this modern mental thought-slavery originated and spread across the US.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  G-Man
Thu, May 14, 2015 9:38am

intellectual straitjacket that requires all modern female protagonists to be only a certain kind of “badass” and “strong”

It’s like you don’t even watch movies.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Thu, May 14, 2015 10:11am

Are you saying there hasn’t been a general trend to typecast women in roles that require them to be “no-nonsense, sassy, independent gals who are self-actualized, quick with the one-liners, and don’t-need-no-man? That trope has even started becoming predominant in animated films as well, see Frozen for example.

In fact I’m having trouble thinking of the last time I saw a nice, tender, Romance with more traditional gender roles. It’s been quite a while.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  G-Man
Thu, May 14, 2015 2:44pm

Fuck traditional gender roles.

Are you saying there hasn’t been a general trend to typecast women

Yes.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Fri, May 15, 2015 12:56am

“Fuck traditional gender roles”. I guess that says it all really. I don’t suppose you’ve ever paused to reflect how, possibly without exception, all of the feminist thinkers who rose to prominence in the postwar period were Jewish? A bit curious given Jews make up only 2% of the population…

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  G-Man
Fri, May 15, 2015 1:31am

Antisemitic MRA fuckery? Huh, I wonder* what cesspit corner of the internet that’s coming from?

*Spoiler alert: I don’t actually wonder.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 15, 2015 1:35am

It’s not antisemitic if it happens to be true. After universal suffrage (a *good* thing), feminism, under the influence of Jewish feminists, morphed into an attempt to undermine and destroy the Christian nuclear family. Don’t take my word for it: “The white race is the cancer of human history” – Susan Sontag.

Feminism, in regards to women and men having equal rights, is great. Feminism that turns women against men is not. The inability to distinguish between these two stances persists to this day.

bronxbee
bronxbee
reply to  G-Man
Fri, May 15, 2015 2:26am

oh, i see what happened here. okay, people, we have to be nice to G-Man. it is obvious that he has been in a 60 year coma and is just waking up to the strange new world of the 21st century…. he can’t get his 50s head around the new world order.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  bronxbee
Fri, May 15, 2015 3:10am

more ad homs, but can’t counter my argument, apparently.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  G-Man
Fri, May 15, 2015 5:22am

First off, it’s not a debate, chuckles. You’re worse than full of shit, you’re full of someone else’s shit (I’m not even going to contemplate how it got there), so any kind of argument would involve us talking to ourselves while you type out whatever your cue next card says.

Second, ad hominem is if I say “You’re an asshole, therefore you’re wrong.” I’m saying, “You’re wrong, and you’re an asshole.” It’s a subtle distinction, I know, but you’ll get it.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 15, 2015 10:45am

You clearly don’t know what ad hominem means, so your last attempt at a jab was truly pathetic. It’s only a google away, you know…

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  bronxbee
Fri, May 15, 2015 3:20am

Aaaaaaany minute now he’s gonna post Kinder, Küche, Kirche.

O_o

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  G-Man
Fri, May 15, 2015 5:23am

Dudebro, check the numbers on the back of your cards. You’ve got them all out of order. This one doesn’t come till way later, right before the comically un-ironic accusation of Nazism.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 15, 2015 10:44am

If your powers of sarcasm and condescension were, you know, matched by any actual content, it might be breathtaking. Unfortunately, you’re just being a windbag with no substance whatsoever.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  G-Man
Thu, May 14, 2015 3:10pm

Traditional gender roles? You mean man-as-walking-wallet and physically invincible and never sad and woman as either silent slave or parasite?

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 15, 2015 12:58am

In your black & white world I don’t suppose there’s any room for women as nurturers and caregivers, and men as providers and defenders? It’s only the stable, monogamous family structure that has been working for Europeans for eons…

It seems you have bought into the propaganda hook line and sinker, my friend…

MisterAntrobus
MisterAntrobus
reply to  G-Man
Fri, May 15, 2015 5:09pm

Have you watched a romantic comedy in the last, I dunno, 20 years? They’re almost all about reinforcing traditional gender roles, showing that all women really want is a man to marry.

Anyway, if you are really tired of movies presenting less “traditional” gender relationships, there’s an abundance of old films on DVD, Blu-Ray, Netflix, etc. that should satisfy you.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  MisterAntrobus
Fri, May 15, 2015 10:21pm

I’ve banned this guy, so don’t expect him to reply to you.

Damian Barajas
Damian Barajas
reply to  G-Man
Sat, May 16, 2015 1:48am

Have you ever used the phrase: “bunch of alpha males”?

Shiraz
Shiraz
reply to  G-Man
Thu, Jun 18, 2015 5:45am

“Nice” and “tender”? Yep. That’s a woman’s job to soothe men. Wait, no it’s not.
Your post has an Old Time Religion feel that’s really gross to me. I’m surprised you post online. Since you like tradition and all. If your woman folk does the same, do you call them harlots?
Sassy and intelligent females characters bum you out? WTF? Are you Amish?

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Thu, May 14, 2015 2:13am

I don’t blame you for being uninformed, but you should at least be less smug about it. You’re embarrassing yourself.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  G-Man
Thu, May 14, 2015 9:42am

There’s someone embarrassing himself here, and it ain’t Dr. Rocketscience.

You are going to find NO sympathy for your MRA nonsense here, so you might as well quit now.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Thu, May 14, 2015 10:06am

I had to look up MRA, I had no idea what you were on about. I’m not representing any viewpoint other than my own.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  G-Man
Thu, May 14, 2015 4:09pm

Oh please spare us. You tried to bandy about “social justice warrior” as a pejorative. I doubt you’ve had an original thought this century. You certainly haven’t expressed one since arriving here.

G-Man
G-Man
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 15, 2015 12:59am

Ad hom. Saying a message is “unoriginal” without refuting it, is insufficient.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  G-Man
Fri, May 15, 2015 1:28am

Oh, look, another one who think this is a debate. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, they’re so cute when they’re little. Now run along and play outside, junior, the grownup are talking.

Mike
Mike
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 15, 2015 7:16am

I hate the tone of people on this forum

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Mike
Fri, May 15, 2015 1:06pm

I do my best to police the assholes.

CB
CB
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Wed, May 20, 2015 7:37pm

What lies! Why just the other day Camille Paglia burst out of my closet and assaulted me with a lecture on the indoctrination of the patriarchy!

Marshall Myers
Marshall Myers
Wed, May 13, 2015 7:23pm

“What a lovely review!”

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
Thu, May 14, 2015 1:00am

After checking times and theaters, I need to know if this is something that is worth seeing in 3D. Was it shot in it? Did Miller make excellent use of it? Or is regular projection good?

Thanks.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  LaSargenta
Thu, May 14, 2015 9:40am

I didn’t see it in 3D, but almost no films are worth the 3D premium. I doubt this one breaks that rule (it was NOT shot in 3D, for one). It looks amazing in 2D, so go for 2D.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Thu, May 14, 2015 2:35pm

Thanks. And I agree that almost nothing is worth the 3D premium.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  LaSargenta
Thu, May 14, 2015 6:21pm

I disagree. I think absolutely nothing is worth the 3D premium.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Thu, May 14, 2015 6:31pm

Well, we saw How to Train Your Dragon in 3D in the theater at the bargain matinee ($11.50 ea instead of $6.75 each). As that was slightly less than the normal 2D ticket and the animation was great and worked well in 3D, we thought that was worth it. We saw it again in 2D on DVD and even allowing for the smaller screen, we could tell when we would have been saying “OoooHHHHooo” in the theater.

Otherwise, yes, I’d agree.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  LaSargenta
Thu, May 14, 2015 10:56pm

HTTYD is the closest anything I’ve seen come to being worth it in 3D. But’ y’know what, I’ve seen it a dozen times since then in 2D, and it never lost anything except the headache.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 15, 2015 3:31am

Eew, headache.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Thu, May 14, 2015 7:21pm

Avatar was worth it.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Thu, May 14, 2015 10:54pm

I’ve seen Avatar 4 times, twice in 3D, trying to figure it out. That’s half a day of my life I’d like back. :P

MisterAntrobus
MisterAntrobus
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Fri, May 15, 2015 5:11pm

Avatar was certainly the only one I recall being worth it, because Cameron clearly spent the time and mental energy necessary to compose it for that medium. Unfortunately, it has so little else going for it that it’s hardly worth it to watch in any other form but massive-screen 3D.

thomskis
thomskis
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Sat, May 30, 2015 9:45am

3D Beowulf was fun.

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Thu, May 14, 2015 7:41pm

I can think of a whole list of films that were improved by 3D. Pina, for example, is an entirely different film in three dimensions. Hugo also used the technology really well (but the book is still better).
However, none of the 3D films about Marvel super-heroes are actually in 3D.

Jonathan Roth
Jonathan Roth
reply to  Danielm80
Thu, May 14, 2015 8:24pm

I LOVE 3d animated CG cartoons in 3d. Aside from Avatar, I can’t remember any points were the 3d adds to the live action experience meaningfully.

That said, watching the Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer in 3d made me giddy all over again.

Mike
Mike
reply to  Jonathan Roth
Fri, May 15, 2015 7:21am

Dredd 3D and Life of Pi are also fantastic in 3D. I have never experienced the headaches that others have described so I love these movies on 3D Bly Ray at home. Pixar has done really well also.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  Danielm80
Thu, May 14, 2015 10:58pm

I stand by my statement. :)

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Thu, May 14, 2015 8:21pm

Sorry, a PS to my previous post. Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams was completely worth the cost of the 3D. In fact, I paid for me and my son twice, the second time paying for Loverman to come as well.

But, Herzog is awesome.

I just remembered (thanks to Daniel’s triggering my memory of seeing Pina at the same theater).

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  LaSargenta
Thu, May 14, 2015 10:00pm

Oh yes! Cave of Forgotten Dreams must be seen in 3D.

Mike
Mike
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 15, 2015 7:17am

Thanks for your very cool and popular opinion! I bet you love film over digital as well. And anything other than color and sound is purely a gimmick.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Mike
Fri, May 15, 2015 1:07pm

You just complained about the “tone” of the comments here, and then you post this?

You’re not helping.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  Mike
Fri, May 15, 2015 4:45pm

*shrug* You’re welcome to like anything you like. I stand by my statement: I’ve never had a movie experience enhanced by watching it through a ViewMaster. Most 3D is still post-process, where everything appears to be projected on it’s own 2D plane – the so-called “cardboard cut-out effect”. Audiences uncritically paying the 3d premium is what has wrought that, and it will continue as long as the cost to revenue ratio favors studios.

The two-camera process (what some call “3D done right”) isn’t that much better. It can only 3D-ify what the cameras can see. And what I end up seeing, at best, is objects kind of poking out of their 2D planes a little bit. CGI animation does slightly better, since the rendering process can place every pair of pixels into a precise location on the screen. But the effect there is like taking a sphere, slicing it in half, and placing the flat side on the screen. It’s not convincingly three dimensional.

The headache issue is a personal one, but it’s not an uncommon one. It’s cause by the 3D process trying to trick the eyes into focusing on depths that aren’t actually there. It’s inherent to the illusion, and not something fixed by multiple cameras.

And then there’s the issue of presentation. Both the IMAX LCD shutter system and the Dolby chromatic shifting system are very expensive for the theaters, compared the the Real3D polarized system. So most theaters go with Real3D. But polarized systems cut the light that gets to the eyes, reducing the brightness of the presentation, and worsening the muddiness that most 3D movies already suffer from. The shift to digital projection means we’re finally seeing movies at full brightness again (though now I occasionally run into frame rate issues FML.)

tl:dr version – it’s not a hipster affectation, it’s that 3D process can only do so much, introduces other problems, and doesn’t enhance anything anyway.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Thu, May 14, 2015 7:39pm

I thought Hugo was worth seeing in 3D, particularly since the story was largely about the magic of film as a new experience; just as
the first audiences were wowed (and maybe even ducked) when the train
rushed right toward the camera, so Hugo’s actual audience is (hopefully)
wowed by the new(er) magic of 3D. I thought it was employed well.

But yeah, it’s a rare exception.

Paul Wartenberg
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Sat, May 16, 2015 2:45am

I’ve seen people post on twitter and facebook that the 3D is for the most part awesome.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Paul Wartenberg
Sat, May 16, 2015 11:54am

I would really like to see it in IMAX (which is also in 3D, at least here in London). If I do, I’ll report on it.

cinderkeys
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Tue, May 19, 2015 4:44am

Ah, thank you for that. You saved me the extra expense and annoying glasses.

Jonathan Roth
Jonathan Roth
reply to  LaSargenta
Wed, May 27, 2015 3:00pm

Saw it last night, there one single shot that I remember being in 3D, and it was a cheesy 3D cliche that “worked” as the climax.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Jonathan Roth
Wed, May 27, 2015 3:14pm

Yeah, I know which shot you’re talking about. Did you see it in 3D? I saw it in 2D and it worked there, too.

Jonathan Roth
Jonathan Roth
reply to  LaSargenta
Wed, May 27, 2015 3:33pm

Yep. It’s one of the lazier cliches in 3d movies to just throw stuff at the audience, so I doubt they’re missing anything in 2d.

MarkyD
Thu, May 14, 2015 8:48pm

Man, I want to see this! But my wife has no interest, and my son, at 14, is a tad too young. I have no friends to go with, and can’t stand seeing movies alone. I guess I’ll have to wait 4 months to watch it at home. Damn.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  MarkyD
Sun, May 17, 2015 1:22am

I think you should find a way to see it on a big screen. I took my 13 y.o. and he was ok. But, everyone’s different.

What about grabbing someone from work who likes movies?

Bea Harper
Bea Harper
Thu, May 14, 2015 10:57pm

Brilliant review! So many beautiful subversions of type and this is definitely Furiosa and the Wives’ tale of survival. Amazing beast of a movie.

MaryAnn Johanson
Fri, May 15, 2015 1:05pm

Comments from anti-semitic MRA spouter-of-hate deleted, as well as comments responding to him. He is now blocked.

Bloomquist
Bloomquist
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Mon, May 18, 2015 11:40pm

MaryAnn, I appreciate your reviews even when I don’t agree with them (and in this case, I do agree, what a wonderful film!). I’m sorry to know you need to spend time dealing with that kind of crap in your comment section. You have a great space here, otherwise.

a
a
Fri, May 15, 2015 3:46pm

Serious question: If I expect Gravity (I know they’re different, shhh) will I be disappointed. To clarify, Gravity was heart-stopping, emotional and, the last 10 minutes was the most intense moment I’ve had at the movies in recent memory — will I get this thrill out of Mad Max?

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  a
Fri, May 15, 2015 5:34pm

Not quite the same sort of thrill, no.

Beowulf
Beowulf
Fri, May 15, 2015 5:51pm

I am SO awaiting the re-release of CITIZEN KANE and CASABLANCA in 3-D!

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Beowulf
Fri, May 15, 2015 7:14pm

Every time The Shining pops up on BBC America, I think: This would work really well in 3D.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Danielm80
Fri, May 15, 2015 8:50pm

I vote for Faster Pussycat, Kill, Kill, Kill. But, John Waters films would rock in 3D

Jurgan
Jurgan
reply to  Beowulf
Thu, May 21, 2015 1:39am

Kane has more than enough depth without gimmicks.

Paul Wartenberg
Sat, May 16, 2015 2:48am

I seriously want to see Fury Road win Best Cinematography. This movie is f-cking gorgeous.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  Paul Wartenberg
Sat, May 16, 2015 5:57pm

OMG yes!!!

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Paul Wartenberg
Sat, May 16, 2015 6:35pm

I agree.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
Sat, May 16, 2015 6:04pm

Wow.

Wow wow wow wow.

I haven’t felt the need to go see a movie again like this in a while.
This isn’t “trilling” or “exciting” kind of movie, it’s a steady, relentless build of intensity that you can’t tear your eyes from. It tells its story through it imagery better than anything I’ve seen in a while.

I don’t think it will be transformative, because it’s not a formula easily aped (like “Die Hard on a …”) nor does it introduce a specific visual trick (like Bullet Time). This feels like George Miller was using new toys to go back to his roots, and in doing he found something amazing.

I’m worried that it won’t be widely seen, that word-of-mouth will call it “weird” and “confusing”, that it “doesn’t make sense”.

But I for one will be watching this movie for the rest of my life.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
Sat, May 16, 2015 6:35pm

OK. So that was facing awesome.

I think that was what Miller wanted to do with the cameras back in ’77/’78 filming the first time.

RogerBW
RogerBW
Sun, May 17, 2015 3:11pm

When an author returns to a book series that was over and done with thirty years ago, it’s pretty much never a good sign. Usually it means they’ve run out of ideas.

I’m hugely impressed not only that this film is worth watching but that it seems to outdo the typical modern action film.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  RogerBW
Sun, May 17, 2015 5:46pm

The difference, I think, is a technological one. The technology of writing doesn’t necessarily affect the craft of writing. Whereas the technology of filmmaking is intrinsic to the craft.

I’ve been watching clips from “The Road Warrior”, which I think is the “Mad Max” film Miller is basically remaking in “Fury Road”.
What I think Miller has done here, is applied modern filmmaking technology to the ideas he was trying to commit to film 33 years ago.

“Fury Road” is one of the best examples I’ve seen of a film satisfying my two criteria for re-making a movie*: 1) is the original version not a great film itself, but one that suffered in the execution; and 2) does the remake have something new and/or interesting to say with the material.

Most remakes fail the first criterion, getting greenlit because it was a great film, and so has a built in audience. “The Road Warrior”, I think, is marred by technical problems and limitations. It’s color palate is just drab. It’s settings are post-apocalyptic only if you squint. Hell, Miller famously couldn’t even get the Dolby sound mix to work. “Beyond Thunderdome” was Miller’s first attempt to address these problems, but that film is frankly a bit of a mess. “Fury Road” is a technical tour de force.

Regarding the second, most try to do this, but most stumble badly. This, I think, comes from a failure with the first criterion: They’re remaking a great film, which already worked. There’s not much more to say there.** Miller, on the other hand, found something (and not just in making the film look and sound they way he wanted). He explores how not only will things like water and fuel become scarce after the fall of civilization, but so too will people become a rare and valuable resource.

*The former I credit to Gene Siskel. The latter I’m not sure where it came from.

**For an example, see the remake of “The Day the Earth Stood Still”.

RogerBW
RogerBW
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Sun, May 17, 2015 5:57pm

That makes a lot of sense. It’s often seemed to me that people talked about the memory of The Road Warrior more than they talked about the film itself.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  RogerBW
Sun, May 17, 2015 6:43pm

Mad Max and The Road Warrior both were movies I saw because I was fascinated by post-apocalyptic and dystopian stories. (So much so that my mother pressed on me the only science fiction she had ever read: A Canticle for Leibowitz.) The movies as artifacts were frankly crap, although they both stayed vivid because i could see someone had a vision. (MM was riddled with continuity problems, for starters.) Seeing this, like I wrote yesterday, was like getting to see what Miller was seeing in his head 40 years ago.

Kathy_A
Kathy_A
reply to  LaSargenta
Mon, May 18, 2015 10:00pm

I so agree with your assessment of the first three films–in rewatching them, there are many weaknesses, but the vision remains true throughout and is what one remembers after seeing the films, even sticking in your head thirty years later.
(And, I have to add–A Canticle for Leibowitz is sooo freakin’ good!! Love that book.)

Beowulf
Beowulf
reply to  RogerBW
Mon, May 18, 2015 10:15pm

Great comments from you and from Dr. Rocketscience. Thanks for keeping this site worth visiting.

CB
CB
Wed, May 20, 2015 2:10pm

Well that settles it. When MaryAnn Johanson and RedLetterMedia both agree that a movie is really good, and a refreshing example of what Hollywood has forgotten about making great action movies, then that tells me it’s a movie worth seeing.

Which is definitely not what I’d thought from watching the trailers. Not only is it already starting in a hole by being a 30-year-on remake of movies I don’t have much nostalgia for anyway, the trailer looked just awful. And I don’t just mean that it looked like the frantic, pointless, numbing action-for-actions-sake mess that has become practically synonymous with Hollywood action flicks, though of course I do mean that. I mean it was visually unappealing. It looked like everything was put through a filter that gave everything a “sharp” look — I lack the vocabulary to describe it properly, but the point is it was like they were deliberately going for the look of a console game instead of a live action movie. Combine with the video-game-esque action and…

But geeze, even if the way it looks on screen is the same as the trailer and unappealing to me, I’d still watch it for great, practical action done in service to a story.

amanohyo
amanohyo
reply to  CB
Wed, May 20, 2015 3:03pm

You may be slightly disappointed. The action is great, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not really done in service to a story so much as vice versa. There is a sharp, videogame look to the film; however, it still feels gritty and visceral because of the comparatively subtle use of CG, and the reliance for the most part on stuntmen and practical effects. The action scene in which Max first meets Furiosa in particular is brilliantly choreographed and shot.

It’s kind of the anti-Avengers 2. Whereas that film felt like a complicated, meticulously engineered shell encasing a stale, listless core, this is crude and loud on the outside, but the symbolism at the center feels more substantial. One feels that there is some genuine imagination and passion under the hood. Like Max, it doesn’t have a lot to say, but says it well.

Also, I finally understand why some of the MRAs and their ilk are upset. This is the first action movie I’ve seen in which the male and female main characters were treated equally by the script, by the camera, and by wardrobe/makeup, without a forced romantic subplot. Try to keep track of what perspective or gaze the camera is assuming – remarkably, it’s split almost exactly down the middle between Max and Furiosa. That’s a rare balancing act even for an indie romantic comedy, much less a big budget action blockbuster.

The Seven Samurai homage to Seiji Miyaguchi’s badassery was a nice nod of respect to the grandfather of gritty action movies too. My dad hates all the other Mad Max movies, and even he had a good time.

CB
CB
reply to  amanohyo
Wed, May 20, 2015 7:59pm

Yeah, I didn’t even mean it in the sense that the story comes first. I meant that (according to the RLM review anyway) the action simply *advances* the plot and even the characters. Rather than the recent typical way it works where the plot happens in dialogue scenes and then action happens in between and oh hey how about some characters so plonk down a dialogue scene then oh noes more action! Making it feel disconnected and unengaging.

That’s how low my standards are at this point. :P

Bluejay
Bluejay
Wed, May 20, 2015 9:18pm

Dear god, this was a magnificent film. Somehow I’ve missed all the previous Mad Max movies, but this one blew me away. Miller’s vision feels extravagant yet stripped down, unhinged yet disciplined, all at the same time. I can’t think of a single thing wrong with it. (And that awesome music!)

I have to admit, the idea of driving a big rig with a guitarist strapped to its hood and blasting rock riffs is mightily appealing to me.

And anyone who can’t stand the fact that this film belongs to Furiosa (without taking anything away from Max or Nicholas Hoult’s War Boy) deserves nothing but laughter and pity.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Bluejay
Wed, May 20, 2015 9:38pm

You know, he really had drummers playing the Taiko on the back of that rig. I read in one article how they had to deal with constant sand in their faces keeping the beat.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Sat, May 23, 2015 12:19am

I’ll amend my statement: I don’t want to drive the big rig with the guitarist. I want to BE the guitarist.

http://www.themarysue.com/george-miller-fire-guitar/

This movie is INSANE.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
Tue, May 26, 2015 1:37pm

Saw it a second time. Got so caught up in it I forgot to look for continuity errors. (Sorry, that’s a hobby of mine.)

Came across a trailer that Miller issued in B&W. He apparently has insisted that the Blu-Ray release include a special all B&W version because he prefers it that way compared to the super-saturated color he used for the desert. The trailer does look wonderful. It reiterates what so many are thinking about the cinematography. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMaA2RWducg

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  LaSargenta
Tue, May 26, 2015 2:15pm

Maybe they were done with drones?

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Tue, May 26, 2015 2:17pm

Ah. Maybe. I didn’t notice a “drone handler” in the credits either, though.

What do you think of the effect on the trailer of Black and White?

RogerBW
RogerBW
reply to  LaSargenta
Tue, May 26, 2015 2:54pm

“Drone wrangler”? :-)

I agree, I’d expect an RPV operator to get credit.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  RogerBW
Tue, May 26, 2015 3:57pm

Right. I suppose it is a stupid thing to chase, but I’ve been puzzling over which bits are not CGI. Plenty are obvious. This one, not so much.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 29, 2015 4:36pm

This video shows how some of the camerawork was done. Maybe the camera rig in the first clip is what you’re thinking of?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oGC3yK3dd7o

It’s amazing to see just how REAL a lot of the action is (those motorcycle stunts!). And I suppose it’s logical that they would film a lot of the on-vehicle fights on vehicles that weren’t actually moving, so I find it really impressive that it all looks like it’s happening at 100 mph.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, May 29, 2015 5:56pm

I noticed the same thing (about the shots with Tom Hardy on the back of the “moving” War Rig). One of those little-heralded boons of CGI: the ability to do the stunt work with all the safety gear and precautions in place.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, May 29, 2015 6:11pm

Yes, that is probably the camera rig that created most of the shots I was noticing. There still is the distance wide shots of the rig with pursuit and vehicles coming from lower right of screen with the ridge between that either is from and airplane or a model. No? If would have had to be a really tall cliff otherwise.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  LaSargenta
Wed, May 27, 2015 1:54pm

The B&W is interesting. Not sure it’s a vitally important change to the film.

Dr. Rocketscience
Dr. Rocketscience
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 29, 2015 2:45pm

I hope the B&W version on the Blu-Ray is better than this. The contrast is way to muddy. You can’t just turn the color setting all the way down on full color video and expect it to look good.

(I’m sure George Miller knows this. That trailer is probably some due with iMovie.)

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Dr. Rocketscience
Fri, May 29, 2015 2:57pm

Damn! Did I post the wrong trailer? I saw a beautiful trailer embedded in an article, lost track of it, went to YouTube and found this, but (oops) didn’t watch before posting.

The one I saw had really nice chiaroscuro in the chase through the Citadel sequence.

Paul Wartenberg
Fri, May 29, 2015 3:35am

Just some additional observations after having seen this for a third time in the theaters (something I haven’t done since The Incredibles):

* This movie owes a lot to the John Ford Westerns in terms of the use of vast landscapes as battlefields, and of well-staged chase scenes.

* The movie doesn’t really relegate Max to the role of sidekick: it merely disregards the need to tell more of his story because we’ve already seen most of it in the first three films. As a result, it appears as though Furiosa dominates the story: in truth she is merely presenting herself as Heroine of her own story, overlapped with Max’s own quest for sanity and redemption in the desert. It’s really a Dual Protagonist movie.

* The scene where Furiosa uses Max to steady the sniper rifle has multiple layers to it, but above all it’s the moment where Max utterly trusts her – and she him – to get the job done. There’s an even more subtle moment early on when Furiosa decides to tell Max the sequence for the rig’s control panel. Max has had a gun on her and the wives up until then: the second she entrusts him with the secret, he wordlessly clicks the hammer of the gun into rest mode (essentially putting the gun on safety). It happens so quietly and understated I think people may have missed the meaning of it.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Paul Wartenberg
Fri, May 29, 2015 11:05am

It’s really a Dual Protagonist movie.

It really isn’t. His actions to not set the plot in motion, nor do they drive the plot. He is a bystander to Furiosa’s story who gets caught up in it. By the time he does anything that impacts the action in a significant way — when he makes a suggestion to Furiosa that makes her change her mind about what she’s doing — it’s far into Furiosa’s story, and her accepting his suggestion doesn’t change that.

Think of it this way: Could someone else have made that suggestion and not have that alteration make any real difference? Absolutely. Any of the other characters could have made that suggestion. But only Furiosa could have done the things she has done.

It’s okay that Max isn’t a protagonist. He’s still an interesting character, and he still gets a bit of growth and change. This is the sort of thing women have to cling to, typically, when we watch movies like this: We console ourselves by saying, Yeah, it’s all about the guy, but at least the sidekick woman got to do a little bit of something interesting, at least she had a little bit of a personal journey.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, May 29, 2015 8:33pm

I would like this a thousand times if I could!

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Paul Wartenberg
Fri, May 29, 2015 12:24pm

I’m thinking of going to see it a third time myself. Maybe tomorrow morning.

I agree with MAJ about the dual protagonist theory, and yes, I agree with you about the moments where the trust is made manifest.

Personally, I see the Mad Max character as always stumbling into others’ stories. He becomes the vehicle for their tales. His own tale was to me only a part of the first movie. Goose had a story there and Nightrider, too.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 29, 2015 12:39pm

and Nightrider, too.

A shadowy flight into the dangerous world of a man… who does not exist?

But seriously: These Mad Max names are all fantastic. We should all have one.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, May 29, 2015 12:49pm

What would be yours?

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 29, 2015 1:31pm

Vox Imperium.

Or Urban Putty Speckle.

Or… La Sargenta. That’s a cool Mad Max name in and of itself AND I’M TAKING IT. >:-D

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, May 29, 2015 1:59pm

I searched Google for “Mad Max name generator.” There are at least three. According to this one

http://i.imgur.com/ns0hBZz.jpg

I am Johnny Amazon. I like that.

One of the other websites suggested Ballpeen Headhunter. I like that, too, because it reminds me of a Jane Yolen quote. When religious people called her names, she said: If I’m going to be a tool of Satan, I want to be a ballpeen hammer.

One of these days, I’ll actually see Fury Road.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Danielm80
Fri, May 29, 2015 2:29pm

Ballpeen Headhunter rules.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Bluejay
Fri, May 29, 2015 2:30pm

Fuck you.

I’m renaming myself Pesadilla Monoxide. So there.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 29, 2015 4:38pm

Damn, that’s a badass name. You can keep LaSargenta too, though. :-)

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  LaSargenta
Fri, May 29, 2015 8:33pm

Someone very wise on the Internet suggested that *all* the Max movies are urban legends about the encounters that people in this afterscape have had with him. I like that.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Fri, May 29, 2015 8:45pm

SHAAAAAAAANE! Come Back!!

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Paul Wartenberg
Sun, May 31, 2015 1:49am

Uh…yeah…third time this morning. Took another friend. She loves movies, especially action movies and horror/suspense.

Goddamn!! that’s a fantastic movie.

You’re right about the “John Ford western”, but it does transition into Lawrence of Arabia territory once they escape the bullet farmer.

I’ve been trying to remember the last time I have seen a movie this many times in the theater at its first release (which eliminates Citizen Kane…which I’ve seen loads of times). I seriously think it was Cousin, Cousine back in freakin’ 1976. The Clay Theater was close to home on Fillmore Street and I saw it many times there.

This is quite a different movie. but just as good.

Paul Wartenberg
Fri, May 29, 2015 3:36am

Riley Keough is Elvis’ GRANDDAUGHTER?!

Miguel Gonzalez
Miguel Gonzalez
Fri, Jun 12, 2015 2:19am

Charlize Theron is SUBLIME in this role. What a range! It’s a shame that she doesn’t get too many meaty roles like this one, and is wasted on MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST and the like.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
Tue, Jun 16, 2015 1:27am

I so wanted to leave my desk and disappear into a nearby theater and see this for the fourth time.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  LaSargenta
Tue, Jun 16, 2015 4:42pm

As a record-keeping location for interesting Mad Max:Fury road links, this seems appropriate.

MAJ tweeted this link: http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/2015/06/mad-max-fury-road-makes-rape-arguments-invalid/ (Of course, it maybe should be cross-referenced to GOT.)

A Page 6 sort of post that’s pretty fun: http://jezebel.com/mad-max-stunt-doubles-for-charlize-theron-and-tom-hardy-1711436224 (Except I’m philosophically opposed to contracts of this sort…still, if it makes them happy, I’m for it. Thanks to Danielm80.)

This is on my shopping list: http://www.buzzfeed.com/kmallikarjuna/theres-going-to-be-a-kick-ass-comic-about-imperator-furiosa#.fd0R1qM4l (Thanks to Bluejay.)

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Tue, Jun 16, 2015 9:40pm

You’re welcome!

I liked the first link. On the topic of using storytelling options OTHER than rape to motivate or define characters, there’s also this:

http://www.themarysue.com/lady-junk-1/

Smart Bitches’ movie review/discussion proper is worth a read as well:

http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/reviews/movie-review-mad-max-fury-road/

I’ve seen this film three times already. (Have you gone for your fourth, LaSargenta?) I don’t remember the last time I saw a film three times. I might go for a fourth just to get the taste of Jurassic World’s sexism out of my mouth.

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Tue, Jun 16, 2015 10:50pm

There are several sentences in that review that, by themselves, justify the existence of the movie. I have longtime friends I’m less passionate about than those reviewers are about Fury Road.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Danielm80
Thu, Jun 18, 2015 4:44pm

Well, this movie is not the same as everything else. It isn’t even the same as Miller’s earlier Mad Max movies.

IE: it isn’t dull.

It is amazing how dull so much has been and how refreshing it is not to see dull things.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Bluejay
Tue, Jun 16, 2015 11:49pm

I have not yet gone for the fourth. I want to. I refuse to see Jurraassic World.

But, Spy looks fun.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  LaSargenta
Tue, Jun 16, 2015 10:52pm

People meet at work. It happens a lot. :-)

And Theron probably had more than one stunt double…

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  MaryAnn Johanson
Tue, Jun 16, 2015 11:25pm

As does Tom Hardy. The stunt double who got married isn’t the same one that everyone’s swooning over.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
Tue, Jul 07, 2015 7:44pm

Trivia…

The tattoo on Max’s back has (among other stuff) “Day 12045”.

Divide that by days in a year and you get about 33 years. Can we assume that is from the founding of the Citadel?

When Furiosa says 7000 days, that’s about 19 years, about 14 years after whatever the event was that the Citadel people started counting from.

Yes, I’m still thinking about this movie.

Bluejay
Bluejay
reply to  LaSargenta
Tue, Jul 07, 2015 8:17pm

I can’t wait until this comes in from the library.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Art-Mad-Max-Fury/dp/1783298162

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Tue, Jul 07, 2015 8:55pm

Unfortunately, there are no Pop Vinyl figures based on the movie.
http://geekxgirls.com/article.php?ID=4895

Otherwise, we could act out the story the next time we get together. We wouldn’t even need a script, because LaSargenta has it memorized.

LaSargenta
LaSargenta
reply to  Danielm80
Tue, Jul 07, 2015 9:16pm

O_o

Bluejay
Bluejay
Mon, Aug 24, 2015 1:44pm

Just wanted to add this piece by Kameron Hurley because I think it’s really good.

http://www.kameronhurley.com/wives-warlords-and-refugees-the-people-economy-of-mad-max/

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Mon, Aug 24, 2015 2:25pm

I wish Hurley had mentioned one detail: The people almost literally turn themselves into objects, by adding machine parts and silver paint to their bodies so they look like motor vehicles. Furiosa, Max, Nux, and their allies eventually reverse the process. Nux’s truck blows up, very dramatically, and—if I remember correctly—Furiosa even loses her robotic arm.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Danielm80
Mon, Aug 24, 2015 4:19pm

Furiosa’s arm is different from the Warboys spraying themselves chrome, though. (Unless we want to believe that she deliberately chopped off her arm so that she could use a prostheses, and there’s no support for that.) The soldiers spraying themselves is part and parcel of how they are used by Immortan Joe, part of the religion that makes them pliable and willing to die for him.

Bluejay
Bluejay
Wed, Aug 26, 2015 1:37pm

Regarding protagonists: Honest Trailers gets it. :-)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RXhcqdewf0

Danielm80
Danielm80
reply to  Bluejay
Wed, Aug 26, 2015 2:04pm

If they’d put that in the theatres, instead of the actual trailer, I would have seen the movie weeks earlier.

Bluejay
Bluejay
Sun, Aug 30, 2015 2:42am

Linking to this here as well:
http://io9.com/mad-max-fury-road-retold-through-hieroglyphics-is-per-1727477739

LoveloveLOVE how this was done, and especially how Furiosa is depicted. It’s astonishing how much fan creativity this film has inspired. It feels like a movie a lot of people really, really needed to see.

MaryAnn Johanson
reply to  Bluejay
Sun, Aug 30, 2015 11:04am

Wow! Amazing.

Yes, the response to this movie *clearly* demonstrates that audiences are hungry for stories that are actually *about* women, and that deal with bullshit that women are tired of *as* bullshit.