Mad Max: Fury Road - Pray it doesn't suck.

For thirty years, I have waited for the next installment of the Mad Max movie series, and have been following the creation of it for nearly a decade.  It’s been a long wait, especially since Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, back in 1985, was such a disappointment for any true Mad Max fan.

Way back in 1981, I remember seeing a preview for The Road Warrior, and began counting down the days until its release.  It also caused me to remember an ad in the newspaper movie section about two years earlier, for a film called Mad Max.  Ads for both movies, used the tagline, “Pray he’s out there”, and I wondered if the two movies were somehow related.

I saw The Road Warrior, the day it was released, and was not disappointed.  In fact, I returned to see it in theaters, about fifteen times.  At that point, I could only wish that I could have seen Mad Max in the theater as well.  In those days, if you missed seeing a movie that wasn’t a blockbuster in the theaters, chances were, that you would never see it at all.

Then, two wonderful things happened - The widespread emergence of cable TV, and the advent of video rentals.  I finally got to see Mad Max on cable, and soon after,  I could rent it on VHS.  Those days, of the early to mid-80’s were truly the golden age of movie rentals.  Every movie a video rental outlet had, was a “new release”, and I figured that I would never be able to exhaust the available supply of good movies that I had not yet seen. (In reality, it took about three years.)  

Soon afterward, one could just buy their favorite movies on VHS, and to this day, Mad Max and The Road Warrior remain my favorite movies of all time.  I’ve seen each, well over one hundred times, and know every scene and line.  The true test of a great movie is:Can you watch it again, even if you’ve seen it many times before?  I’ve worn out two VHS cassettes of both movies.  Thank God for DVD’s.

In 1985, I eagerly awaited the release of Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome.  What a disappointment!  The movie barely had any scenes with any cars in them, and for most Mad Max fans, that’s what the franchise was all about.  The other problem with the movie was the whole kids in the desert thing.  This is what ruined that movie as far as I am concerned.  A band of kids left alone to fend for themselves for years in the desert?  The whole scenario is beyond the realm of possibility.   In order for movies like Mad Max to work, their audiences must be able to believe that such a story could actually happen, even if they have to strain to do so.  This is where I fear that the new Mad Max movie, Fury Road is going to fail.  Maybe not in terms of ticket sales, but by how it will be viewed by true Mad Max fans.

Through watching previews and reading articles, I have picked up on a vibe that  is going to have some bad ass chicks in it.  You know, women that beat up guys and tell guys what to do.  In a post apocalyptic world, this would be less likely to occur than a group of kids surviving by themselves for years in the desert.  Why?  Because it’s supposed to be post apocalyptic!  Duh!  By definition, in a post apocalyptic world, there isn’t going to be any affirmative action, Title IX, a smaller ball, lower minimum standards, or any other artificial means that allows weaker individuals or groups to compete on the same level as the best and/or strongest, in anything.  If some type of apocalyptic event ever takes place, societies will become more like it they were back in preindustrial and even medieval times, and we all know how many ass-kicking chicks existed back then.

I have always been able to overlook the fact that Mad Max can turn his supercharger on and off with an electric switch, even though such a thing is impossible in real life.  Maybe, I’ll be able to overlook the ass-kicking chicks in Fury Road too, even though such a thing is much less believable.

I’ve thought about not even seeing it, but I know I won’t be able to keep away.  I thought about waiting about a week to see it because I hate crowded theaters, but I know I won’t be able to wait that long.   I’ll porbably go see it in a few hours.  Mad Max: Fury Road, Pray it doesn’t suck.





10 comments:

  1. Yeah, I feel the same way about Beyond Thunderdome. It sucked big time. The first two were great. I've seen both many times over the years. Like you, I never get tired of them. They are on my not too extensive list of ones that I never get tired of. Quigley Down Under, Outlaw Josey Wales, Dirty Harry, My Blue Heaven, Killer Klowns From Outer Space and a couple others......

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  2. I can watch The Great Escape and Giant no matter how many times I have seen them before. That is truly the test of whether a movie is great or not.

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  3. Hey Neil;

    There are some movies I can watch over and over again....The first 2 Mad Max's, Star Trek TWOK, highlander, the enemy below...to name a few. I have already heard rumblings that the writers of the new MAD MAX, contacted "The vagina monologues" author how to to make Theron an ass kicking chick and made "Max" a second string and turn "MAD MAX into a feminist movie. I have already decided not to watch it.....shame....they destroyed one of the best franchises in movie history in the move to be politically correct or as Dirty Harry commented in one of his movies with Daly in it..."To be stylish".

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    1. Mr.Garabaldi:

      I can't help but agree with everything you say here, but please read the next comment below. I know this guy personally, and he knows more about movies than anyone I have ever known.

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  4. The reason Eva Ensler was brought on to consult on the film had nothing to do with Theron. It was to get the correct mindset for "the wives" of the movies main antagonist. Who are captive, abused and assaulted, nothing about them screams "ass kicking chicks" trust me. Don't miss out on a great film because you can't look past strong female characters. The film doesn't make these women strong to make a politically correct statement in any way. The circumstances of the time in the film does that. I won't type spoilers here, but trust me the women do not get the politically correct treatment. There is no 98 pound woman beating up 5 guys, twice her size without getting a scratch on her like some Hollywood garbage does now a days, it's better then that. This film doesn't kill a great franchise, just the opposite, it takes it to new heights.

    Marques

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    1. Marques:

      I understand everything you are saying, in fact I have been reading all the reviews, news stories, and blog posts that I can find on this matter. I have read a number of articles that say exactly what you said. Cam and I went and saw it just a few hours ago and both of us felt that it was probably a pretty good film for your average movie goer, but it just doesn't have the "I could watch this movie 100 times and never get tired of it" factor that the first two Mad Max films have.

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  5. Hey Neil,

    I will wait and see about this Mad Max, You have always been a straight shooter(pardon the Pun) so I will take your friend at face value. I like strong female characters...I love the "Kill Bill" movies. Something about the revenge thing I really admire. Also "Underworld" was a good movie for example. I just have heard that Hollywood went overboard and relegated Max to second string.....and for the traditionalist in me....That bothered me. I will go on a tangent here. I have seen Hollywood and commercials marginalize white guys all the time, making them the butt of the jokes or making them inept. It has become a staple and I have become increasingly sensitive to it I guess.

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    1. I saw Fury Road this weekend and I don't think it has any more of a feminist message than any other movies today, but I think what you said in your last sentence there is true for a lot of people. They have had all they can stand and seeing it in a Mad Max film indicates that it has infiltrated every nook and cranny of our society. People feel as if there is no way of getting away from it.

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  6. Robert the BikerMay 22, 2015 at 12:49 PM

    If you want to see a supercharged car that has the blower turned on and off by a switch, go look at a Mercedes SLK, load/throttle sensor activates an electromagnetic drive pulley (like on the air conditioning pump), and off you go!

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    1. I'm going to have to check that out.

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