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Mad Max: Fury Road

220px-Max_Mad_Fury_Road_Newest_PosterThere are very few remakes or sequels out there that come close to the original films.  There are even few sequels that supersede the original film, especially 30 years later.  Mad Max: Fury Road comes close, very very close, to being better than The Road Warrior, but does the job of being better than both the original Mad Max, and Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome films.  In the modern age that is a grand achievement.

I felt like I was going to have an aneurysm throughout the entire film because it is non…stop…action… And when I mean non-stop, I mean non-stop and ferocious action from beginning to end.  Director George Miller also felt the need to speed up the frame-rate through a majority of the action scenes in the film, a trick he’s used in the past films, which makes the film feel like it’s going to completey explode on screen.  It’s frantic, and at certain times I felt like I might actually have to leave the theater for a minute or two just to settle down and catch my breath.

What’s interesting is the film really focuses on Charlize Theron’s character Imperator Furiosa, rather than focusing on Mad Max (Tom Hardy).  Max is a secondary character in the film for the most part which really works.  He’s the big unknown mystery throughout the course of the film, and we don’t really know if he’s the good guy or the bad guy. And he goes on to do a whole lot with his character by saying about 15 words throughout the entire film.

The idea of the film is simple.  Furiosa wants to escape Immorten Joe, who runs a wasteland city after a nuclear apocalypse.  He controls everything.  Furiosa is one of his prisoners who hunts for gas in the wasteland.  As she attempts to go find gas on one run she decides now is the time to flee, and she’s carrying Joe’s 5 wives with her.  Joe’s army called the War Boys head off after her, and Max who has become a prisoner, is stuck on the grill of one of the War Boys (Nux played by Nicholas Hoult) cars as his blood bag.  Furiosa’s goal is to get herself and the 5 wives to the Green.  The lush home where she grew up, and Max and Nux will play important roles down the line.  It then becomes a road movie in every sense of the word.

Director George Miller has made a film that feels like it should have never gotten greenlit to begin with.  What I mean by that is a film that it doesn’t seem like Hollywood would ever allow, except that it’s a remake/sequel, and the fact that Miller has been pushing for the film to get made for 20+ years.  It feels like it comes from and was made in a foreign land, just as the originals do.

From a technical standpoint the film is a near masterpiece.  I can’t imagine the amount of time and synchronization it took to create these battle scenes, and the fact that they are non-stop just adds to the difficulty of making this film.  I think the only way this really works is because of George Miller.  No one else could reboot, or make a sequel to his original Mad Max trilogy.

It’s refreshing to see Fury Road on the big screen.  I thought films like this died a long long time ago.  It’s even more exciting that the public has embraced the film.  It’s easily the best film I’ve seen so far this year, and I can’t wait for another sequel or two to follow.

Grade: A