Let’s get this out of the way: Mad Max Fury Road is the best cinematic experience I’ve had in my entire life. I don’t say that lighty. I grew up in the 80’s and early 90’s. Last Crusade killed when I was 9. Jurassic Park floored me like 5 times theatrically when I was 12. I lived the incredible high leading up to(and deep depression resulting from) Episode I. I have cried, I have laughed, I have yelled, I have shrugged. We all have. And now, we get something so singular, so damn perfect, they could have just called it Fury Road and it would have been enough. That this exists as a sequel delayed 30 years is of very little consequence. This is a magnum opus of mayhem. This is a middle finger shot straight at the overly hyped and overly explained films that overemploy uncanny valley special effects. That’s not to say it doesn’t deliver. If anything, it pummels you into experiencing it’s own reality. It’s bat-shit crazy-but all together plausible-vision of the future is terrifying.
I couldn’t look away. I was simply mesmerized by this story unfolding before my eyeballs and somehow piercing it’s way into my heart like a War Boy’s explosive spear. Everything about this movie works, from frame one. It’s not unfamiliar territory, thematically, but our story starts with Max pondering his place in this wasteland. For about 2 minutes. It’s probably his longest line in the movie, as he says, his existence has boiled down to one thing: survival. Even though his name is part of title, there is little doubt who’s movie this really is: Imperator Furiosa. Without her, there is no movie. She is the heart of it and she drives the whole shebang. And folks, there is so much bang. We are at peak bang. Not necessarily thanks to quantity(though this is a very flammable movie) but the quality. You feel the heat. I’m pretty sure there are body and vehicle parts still smoldering in the theatre. The stakes are established immediately and from the get-go you undestand what kind of a weird and terrible piece of barely breathing meat Immortan Joe is. My immediate reaction was Dune. The festering blisters and grossness is palpable. The sad and crazy existence of the War Boys is impressive. And, while it’s all very reviling(as good villains should be), the whole thing is just so mesmerizing. The photography of this thing is immaculate. The orange and blue over saturation works wonders at conveying the absolute direness and duality of this thing. This is visceral. This is poetic. It is grand and personal. It is beautiful and ugly. It’s tragic and triumphant. It is id and ego and it never. stops. moving. Mad Max Fury Road is why we go to the movies. And, I didn’t even talk about Nux. Go see Fury Road as soon as possible. Enjoy the ride and revel in it.