“My world is fire, and blood.” Simple. Powerful. Evocative. This is the new MAD MAX. His saga continues under the guidance of the original director, Australian GEORGE MILLER.
The new trailer reminds me of the good old days of action films. When there was practical effects, with an emphasis on elaborate stunt work. Well… it looks like the good old days are back with this latest carnation of MAD MAX.
The titular hero is played by BANE himself TOM HARDY. He possesses a fair amount of gravitas. His charisma is magnetic. He seems perfect for this sort of anti-hero role. He draws our attention with very little dialogue. Which is good, because Max isn’t one for words.
Which leads us to the action… WOW. The stunts are so dramatic. They are framed in such an epic way. I love the super-wide shots that let us fully absorb the carnage. I also appreciate the post-apocalyptic vision of this sandstorm ravaged world. Some sort of EMP must have detonated, rendering everything operating with electricity useless.
All those cars that run on computer chips – useless. This excuses the choice to bring back the classic muscle cars of the original MAD MAX trilogy. I loved the used future aesthetic. It makes everything seem more realistic and plausible.
I also love the classical music scored over these images. I get a sense of STANLEY KUBRICK here. It really adds to the grandiose flavour orchestrating the action set-pieces. With all these insane stunts, and this triumphant music, it feels like we’re watching an epic ballet of crushed metal and explosions.
CHARLIZE THERON co-stars in this mess of twisted metal. It looks like she’s the villain, who may turn anti-hero like our main man, Max. She’s shaved her head and gone all RIPLEY (ALIEN3) on us. I have to say she looks bad ass. I especially like the moments where we see her in that strange make-up. She looks like PRIS from BLADE RUNNER, with that black band smeared across her eyes.
I’m glad that this new MAD MAX has evolved with the times. The old films were so masculine, I’m sure some readers were hesitant when they heard the second lead was a woman. Rest assured she doesn’t look like the type that cares about her perfectly quaffed hair or shining fingernails.
When I hear about all these 80s movies getting remade or rebooted, I always get a little worried. Hesitant. Maybe my eyes even roll a little? These remakes just seem superfluous, like a third nipple. MAD MAX seems necessary. A reminder to us all. This is what action looks like. It isn’t animated stunt doubles tumbling through the air with impossible physics.
Action should be visceral. We should feel the intensity. We should feel compelled to duck or swerve with these characters. From these early trailers, I get that same sense of enjoyment. The tangible experience. A movie you can grip. A movie where we feel compelled to pick the gritty sand out of our (hanging open in awe) mouths.
I’m ready for MAD MAX. Are you?
What did you think? Are you rolling your eyes at the idea?
Don’t you love it when we see REAL car chases and REAL destruction? Will we experience a throwback resurgence, where practical effects are properly revered?
What do you think of HARDY as Max? When you see him in that face mask is it too distracting – taking you out of the moment, making you think about BANE?