Friday, November 22, 2019

Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)

The Emperor Has No Clothes


½ Star; MPAA Rating: R
Director: George Miller

Porn film formula:
Nonstop full nudity with raw unsimulated sex acts, tied together with little more than a few patches of duct tape, a half foot of baling wire and the producer's wad of old chewing gum for a story. Overload it with closeups of raw sex acts and the buyers of it won't see there's no plot (nor will they care). It sells DVDs by the rail car load.

Formula for some current Hollywood action films:
Use porn film formula. Substitute the raw sex with spectacular stunts, copious quantities of GFX and VFX, and cause permanent hearing loss  inducing tinnitus with the SFX, all at a nonstop ADHD breakneck pace. Make it spectacular and loud enough with a fast enough pace and the audiences won't realize there's no plot with any substance. It sells tickets by the theater load and popcorn in 5 gallon buckets by the rail car load.

So now we have the latest Mad Max movie, "Fury Road," using the Hollywood action film formula outlined above. It's little more than a two hour extended chase scene. There's just barely enough miniscule plot to launch and maintain the chase; less baling wire holding it together than the car they're using. Forget about story depth or character development. It's all about sensory numbing overload, including giving you permanent tinnitus. Take a good dose of Ritalin before watching and you might realize the emperor has no clothes. The original Mad Max had a real plot that provided background and character development that gave cause to care about the anti-hero. Its two sequels extended the original premise and further developed the Mad Max character. "Fury Road" does none of that. Why is it even called a "Mad Max" movie? The Max anti-hero has been reduced to supporting role, with the lead taken by a new character, "Furiousa." Should have been titled "Furiousa: Fury Road" which would be much more accurate. Oh, but wait, the studio and producers wouldn't be able to sell as many tickets as they could by invoking a past franchise's name recognition, so they add a "Max" supporting character and call it a "Mad Max" movie!

Buy or rent the original trilogy movies with (a very young) Mel Gibson and watch them. They contain substantially greater depth in their stories and principal character development. "Fury Road" gets ½ star because it's not the worst movie I've ever seen, which would get 0 stars.

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