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Mad Max review

Posted : 1 year, 2 months ago on 5 July 2013 08:45

Living in a time where everyone is obsessed with zombies, disease, and everything that's closely related to post-apocalyptic doom, 1979's Mad Max hit like a cool air of an electric hand A/C. Just like how everyone seems to think that psychology in movies equal to copious amount of blood and numerous jump-scares, they also think that zombies and/or gangsters will be the post-apocalyptic world's only residents, with the occasional lone-guy or two. Although nothing has changed much from yesteryear's dystopic films and of the ones of the now, at-least the old ones had class. Though we do have some great modern examples - like The Road - almost all of them steer in the one direction, with little to offer, apart from the usual tough guy and attractive eye-candy. The old dystopic films, especially those of the 80's, had the propensity for being either brutally stark or brutally honest. Caricatures, they were not.

Mad Max is easily one of the finest examples of the genre, and of Australia Cinema as well. To the casual eye this film is straight-up vehicular porn. There are spectacular cars, even spectacular crashes, and orgasm-inducing engine sounds and unrelenting machismo. Only two types of people may be attracted to a film like this: the morally depressed, or the hormonally charged. As for me, I'm rather unsure, to tell you the truth.

The world of Mad Max is all but dead. Fearsome personas roam what is left of anything and terrorize what is left of anyone. Fuel has become a precious scarcity, and vehicles - any kind - have become the most prized commodity. No-one should be without one. I enjoyed how they made it less Western and more 16th Century expedition-style. I also enjoyed how the characters were unconventional, with none being too self-aware, and all being formidable in their own ways. It's clear to see they're inhabiting a world they realize is too corrupted and broken down without their help.

Unlike most others, bar Blade Runner, this film is also very masculine. It really is a man's world out there, and women and children are second-hand assets. I also enjoyed the fact that almost nothing was exaggerated and the spotlight - thankfully - did not dwell much on the emotional factor; because this film doesn't have any.

From the performances, Mel Gibson was awesome, though a little bit loose around the edges, and that's perfectly understandable. It's from the second film onward he becomes the iconic character as we know him today. Nevertheless, I enjoyed his performance and I likened it to a light-headed version of Rick Deckard. From the supporting, Hugh Keays-Byrne was quite unsettling as Toecutter, the antagonist. The villains of the series have always been brutal and creative, and Toecutter is the best example, though he always get over-shadowed by everyone's favorite, Humungus, from the second film. The rest of the cast were exceptionally brilliant, too.

In conclusion, Mad Max is a must watch. It's a film with little to no soul in it, even less sympathy, but a-lot of powerful moments and awesome vehicular scenes.

8.5/10

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Mad Max (1979)

Posted : 2 years, 9 months ago on 29 November 2011 11:11

In a dystopian future Australia, law & order has begun to break down. Berserk motorcycle gang member, Crawford "Nightrider" Montizano, has escaped police custody and is attempting to outrun the Main Force Patrol (MFP) in a stolen Pursuit Special (Holden Monaro). Though he manages to elude his initial pursuers, the MFP's top pursuit man, Max Rockatansky, then engages the less-skilled Nightrider in a high-speed chase, resulting in the death of Nightrider in a fiery crash.

Nightrider's motorcycle gang, led by Toecutter and Bubba Zanetti, is running roughshod over a town, vandalizing property, stealing fuel and terrorizing the populace. Max and officer Jim "Goose" Rains arrest Toecutter's young protege, Johnny "the Boy" Boyle, when Johnny, too high to ride, stays behind after the gang rapes a young couple. When no witnesses appear for his trial, the courts throw the case out and Johnny is released. An angry Goose attacks Johnny and must be held back; both men shout threats of revenge. After his lawyer drags Johnny away, MFP Captain Fred "Fifi" McPhee tells his officers to do whatever it takes to apprehend the gangs, "so long as the paperwork's clean."

A short time later, Johnny sabotages Goose's motorcycle; it locks up at high speed, throwing Goose from the bike. Goose is unharmed, though his bike is badly damaged; he borrows a ute to haul his bike back. However, Johnny and Toecutter's gang are waiting in ambush. Johnny throws a brake drum at Goose's windshield, which shatters and causes Goose to crash the ute; Toecutter then instructs Johnny to throw a match into the gasoline leaking from Goose's wrecked ute, while Goose is trapped inside. Johnny refuses; Toecutter first cajoles, then verbally and physically abuses him. Johnny eventually throws the lit match into the wreckage, which erupts in flames.

Goose is severely burned. After seeing his charred body in the hospital, Max becomes disillusioned with the Police Force. Worried of what may happen if he continues working for the MFP - and that he is beginning to enjoy the insanity - Max announces to Fifi that he is resigning from the MFP. Fifi convinces him to take a holiday first before making his final decision.

While at the coast, Max's wife, Jessie and their infant son run into Toecutter's gang, who attempt to rape her. She flees, but the gang later finds them again at the remote farm where she and Max are staying. The gang runs over Jessie and their son as they try to escape, leaving their crushed bodies in the middle of the road. Max arrives too late to save them.

Filled with rage, Max dons his police leathers and takes a supercharged black Pursuit Special (Ford Falcon XB GT 351) to pursue the gang. After torturing a mechanic for information, Max methodically hunts down the gang members: he forces several of them off a bridge at high speed, shoots Bubba at point blank range with his shotgun, and forces Toecutter into the path of a semi-trailer truck. During the struggle, Bubba runs over Max's arm and shoots him in the knee, which Max braces with a makeshift splint. Max finally finds Johnny, who is looting a car crash victim he presumably murdered for a pair of boots. In a cold, suppressed rage, Max handcuffs Johnny's ankle to the wrecked vehicle whilst Johnny begs for his life, confessing that he is a sick man who suffers from a psychopathic disorder who shouldn't be blamed for his past behavior since he's admittedly crazy. Max ignores his begging and sets a crude time-delay fuse with a slow fuel leak and a lighter. Throwing Johnny a hacksaw, Max leaves him the choice of sawing through either the handcuffs (which will take ten minutes) or his ankle (which will take five minutes). Johnny screams in horror at Max for the unspeakably horrific fate he has been left with, accusing Max of being worse than him. Max wordlessly drives away; as he clears the bridge, the vehicle explodes. Max continues driving into the darkness, the movie ending with his ultimate fate unknown.

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Most Awesomest Movie Evar

Posted : 7 years, 6 months ago on 2 March 2007 03:24

A bit of suspense, a bit of action, a bit of dystopia... Mel Gibson before he went wacko. What else do we need?

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