From veteran director George Miller comes not only the best action movie of 2015, but arguably the best Mad Max film to date. I found every minute of Mad Max: Fury Road an exciting, fast paced, and action-packed masterpiece.
Fury Road takes place in a dystopian future ruled by a dictator named Immortan Joe (played by Hugh Keays-Bryne). Joe has control of the only source of nearby water, as well as all vehicles, weapons, and gasoline. So when the warrior Imperator Furiosa (played by Charlize Theron) aids in the escape of Immortan Joe’s slave wives, he sends his entire fleet of vehicles after her. Forming an alliance with a drifter named Max (played by Tom Hardy), Furiosa attempts to outrun Joe’s army in an oil tanker and escape to freedom. All resulting in a deadly car chase across the desert Wastelands.
Mad Max: Fury Road is quite literally, a nonstop adrenaline rush. Rarely does the film slow down to deliver long-winded expository dialogue. Instead, the viewer is locked into a two-hour car chase full of shooting and explosions. In many scenarios, this level of continuous action would get mind numbing and boring. However in Fury Road, the camera work, color scheme, and musical score help to engage the audience and keep us entertained.
Charlize Theron and Tom Hardy both worked wonders together onscreen. They both played characters that were straitlaced and battle-hardened, all while remaining completely shrouded in mystery. At no point did I see them as Tom Hardy or Charlize Theron, as their acting was overall top-notch and very convincing.
I also enjoyed the post-apocalyptic style and tone that Fury Road lays out perfectly. It pays enough homage to earlier Mad Max titles, while also putting its own spin on things. The costumes, the weapons (like the giant explosive sticks), and the vehicles all added to the testosterone-filled excitement Fury Road offers to its audience.
One minor nitpick I’ve heard from people is how often things in the film go unexplained. Throughout the film Max has visions of individuals from his past, people he most likely failed to save at some point or another. These visions come and go occasionally, and nothing is ever explained or even significantly hinted at. You could argue that not explaining every detail adds to the mystique, and I would somewhat agree with that sentiment. I hate that every film nowadays has to lay out and explain every detail, as if the audience is made up of only toddlers. Regardless, this nitpick is really only a minor issue. An issue easily forgotten, as the film doesn’t even give you a chance to stop and think about the little things.
It’s hard for me to emphasize in words alone how much fun Fury Road is. This is an experience in science fiction entertainment that I would have to recommend to just about anyone. Full of great post-apocalyptic scenery, a fantastic cast, and some of the best shot action sequences in years, Fury Road is sure to go down as one of the action movie greats.
The Verdict: A