First things first, Max Max: Fury Road is rated R for “intense sequences of violence throughout and for disturbing images.” Along with a scene of brief female nudity (non-sexual), that’s a pretty accurate statement for the rating. If you are under 17 (in the U.S.), theaters require you to have an accompanying parent or adult guardian to see a rated R movie. It’s no longer in the theaters, but if you’re under age, you should still ask your parents for permission to see it.
Max Max: Fury Road is very violent right from the beginning and takes only a small breath before more violence and blood, suspense, car chases, and before you know it, it ends. Usually with violence, there’s quite a lot of blood, and most rated R movies tend to bring a lot of it, but surprisingly, there are only a few flashes of bloody gore. And I do mean flashes—they are quick, with only a blur of red, then the screen changes. Once or twice, the shot lingers a little longer in the end sequence.
The themes this film explores could give discomfort to some viewers. Sex slavery is one, though you never see any actual sexual content; it is only implied and portrayed as something to run from. The men, War Boys, have been pulled sway into a sort of cult about rebirth and Valhalla. But neither of these are main plot points, more a touch of backstory to help you understand why the events are happening. The main theme is survival.
The plot unfolds through the action of the film—not through a lot of explanation or narrative. Since there is relatively little dialogue, you really have to pay attention to get the full picture, though the plot line itself is very simple: a group of slaves and their two rescuers are escaping bad guys while trying to stay alive in a post-apocalyptic desert wasteland. The leader of said bad guys, Immortan Joe, was holding captive a harem of wives, young women used for “breeding” purposes. Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron), one of Joe’s female lieutenants, hides five of his wives, one of whom is extremely pregnant, in an armored semi-truck on her way to collect gasoline from a nearby town. Through a series of somewhat horrifying events, Max Rockatansky (Tom Hardy), a survivor, is captured by the War Boys and soon encounters Furiosa’s War Rig during their pursuit to recover the wives. He escapes the War Boys and inadvertently joins forces with Furiosa.
Mad Max: Fury Road is the fourth movie in the Mad Max series, but to tell you the truth, I’ve never seen the other ones. They were Mad Max (1979), Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981), and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985), all starring Mel Gibson in the lead role. A few of my friends have seen them, and they have likes and dislikes. From what I understand, you don’t have to watch the first three movies to understand Fury Road.
I took my little sister to see this movie with me in theaters; she’s 17 and a little on the sensitive side. She can handle violence and action, just not gore and blood (and I mean NONE). I told her to close her eyes at the few graphic scenes, but she greatly enjoyed the action and adventure. She actually keeps asking when we can watch it again, so I’d call that a good reception. ☺
I must say, I loved this movie! I’ve watched it tons of times in the theater and now own it on DVD. It was one of my favorite movies of 2015. The soundtrack is the best driving music! The cars are cool and intriguing and were designed by real car designers—not CGI artists. The characters are easy to empathize with, you want to root for them, and their drive for survival is inspiring.
Mad Max: Fury Road, as a whole, was very well made. It received ten Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture and Best Director, plus it won six of those awards for its production values: Best Costume Design, Best Production Design, Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Film Editing, Best Sound Editing, and Best Sound Mixing. I have to agree with those wins (thought I would have given it Best Picture for sure). It just was fantastic!
Now that you know I adored this movie, I hope you found my review unbiased. 😉
Even though Mad Max: Fury Road doesn’t have the weightiest of story lines (it’s essentially a long, intense car chase), I did pull a life lesson from the sand. As the plot progresses, you begin to uncover just how horrible life in the wasteland is and how it only gets harder and worse in every possible way; the suffering just doesn’t stop. However, Furiosa continues to cling to hope despite the dire circumstances she faces as she tries to protect these five fragile women. Soon, you realize that hope is the only thing keeping her going. Day after day, she doesn’t give up hope, and in the end, it helps her not only survive, but turn their situation around to a better future than they even imagined possible. She keeps hoping that things will be better, even when what she thought was true gets taken away from her.
That kind of drive is inspiring! Films with characters like these make me want to hold onto my hope that things will get better too.
Rachael is an artist who is trying to adult at the same time. Her goal is to help others see and enjoy things they might never get to experience, to let their minds travel to unique worlds and revel in the beauty of everything. Life is an adventure!