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Mad Max: Fury Road

Posted in Reviews

Driving for 2 hours is way more fun in the desert. If you don’t believe me, go see Mad Max : Fury Road. And if you do believe me, go play the game Desert Bus and see that driving in the desert is probably only fun in small doses.

Fury Road does everything it should and nothing that it shouldn’t – except maybe a few small moments of obviously 3D-only visuals. The movie starts fast, and only gets faster, giving you just enough time for a breath, a character moment, and/or a plot point, before throwing you back into the action. The driving force of the action makes the overly-simplistic story forgivable. In fact, the need for more story almost completely disappears in the intensity of explosions, crashes and “Polecat” abductions, though I would’ve preferred just a tiny bit more on that front.

The world of Mad Max is amazingly creative, though we see only a few glimpses of the majority of it. Director George Miller somehow manages to make his post-apocalypse a wonderful sight to see, even if it does have some of the most macabre visuals in any mainstream film to date. Using the fairly standard color palette of day-orange and night-blue, the cinematography still pulls every frame together into its own masterpiece, making each shot something almost worthy of hanging in the Louvre… or at least making its way into a handbook on how to frame shots for the screen.

In fact, almost every aspect of the film could be used in any film studies textbook. Costume design is outstanding; the soundtrack is driving and unique, without being too much; the action is top-notch – with CG and practical effects being used in perfect combination; and the list goes on. Even the writing – which is probably the weakest part, in my opinion – is still deserving of a chapter: “How to write just enough to make your movie work.”

Mad Max: Fury Road isn’t a perfect film, but it is nearly perfectly executed for what it’s trying to accomplish. Simple story, fantastic visuals and enough car-chasing and gun-playing to make you finish your popcorn before you realize what’s happened.

If nothing else, Mad Max: Fury Road should be the new standard for action in all cinema. It’s just so incredibly and effortlessly fun from start to finish, and that’s something most movies can only hope to deliver.

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