Monday, May 18, 2015

Review: Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)

Hardy and Theron shine in Miller's action masterclass.

Directed by George Miller
Produced by Doug Mitchell, George Miller and P.J. Voeten
Written by George Miller, Brendan McCarthy and Nico Lathouris
Starring Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Riley Keough, Zoƫ Kravitz, Abbey Lee and Courtney Eaton

A

George Miller's long-awaited return to the Mad Max universe has received surprising critical acclaim, and the praise is much deserved. Back in a world of trouble is Max Rockatansky (Hardy), a former cop turned lone scavenger and wonderer of the desert wasteland. When he's captured and attached as a blood donor to Nux (Hoult), a warrior who serves a tyrannical warlord named Immortan Joe (Keays-Byrne), Max is thrust into a perilous chase to recover stole property. Imperator Furiosa (Theron), a truck driver for Immortan Joe, has taken the furious leader's wives and fled. As Nux and his fellow warriors draw near Furiosa and the women, Max must join the women's fight and help them overcome the pursuing forces of Immortan Joe if they're to have a chance at a new life.

This welcome return to George Miller's world is almost too good to be true. If a massive, overblown series of thrilling action sequences isn't enough, the design of this movie is a thing of rugged beauty. The gorgeous landscapes (lensed by the legendary John Seale, no less) are staggering, and the detailed production design, makeup, and costumes should be lauded for their unique flourishes and creative mastery. On top of that, Junkie XL's thunderous score rivals the series' previous work by Brian May and Maurice Jarre. Everything looks and sounds amazing - raw and alive. The actors almost take a back seat to the action, but their work doesn't go unnoticed, especially Tom Hardy's understated presence, Charlize Theron's commanding toughness, and Nicholas Hoult's wild abandon. But it all works because of George Miller. This is one big action film, masterfully directed and lovingly assembled with relentless action sequences, a talented cast, and a broad canvas of creative vision on display. As the Mad Max saga continues, dystopian blockbusters are in good hands with this dynamite cinematic experience.

Oscar Potential: Best Production Design, Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score, Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects

14 comments:

  1. I cannot wait to see it, haven't seen one negative review of it

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  2. WOW another rave review! I'm very curious but I REALLY hope it lives up to the hype. It's crazy to think Miller's the same director who did BABE and Happy Feet, ahah.

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    1. Haha, yeah, Miller really has quite an imagination. Hope the film lives up to the hype for you, Ruth.

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    2. I finally saw this Josh and I totally agree w/ you. I'd give this a 4.5/5! I'm writing my quick thoughts on it for my weekend roundup post as Ted's already reviewed it.

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    3. Yay! So glad you loved it! 4.5/5 for me too. :)

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  3. I feel The landscapes were appropriate for such a film, but rather than being gorgeous I felt they highlighted the immense scope of the landscapes and the desperate situation humans found themselves in.

    I found the entire film exciting, once we meet the five wives I feel there was something worth investing in emotionally. So, there was tension to be found in the stunningly staged set pieces.

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    1. I agree on the landscapes, but I thought they were still beautiful. Yeah, the set pieces were incredible. Really hope the next Mad Max film comes together.

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  4. do you give grades base on how much you enjoy a film or on the quality of film-making?

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    1. It tends to be a loose combination of those two factors. For instance, I love Guardians of the Galaxy, but I'd give it a B+, since I do think it has some flaws.

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  5. Urghhhh I'm so excited for this. Is it necessary to have seen the previous Mad Max movies before watching this? Great review!

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    1. Thanks! No, it's not necessary to watch the other films first, but it wouldn't hurt either. ;)

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  6. The action is fast and furious and totally bonkers. And yet the style is totally original: Old West showdowns meets funk mayhem meets feminist drama. Seriously.

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    1. It's a brilliant film. Oscars all around!

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