Mad Max: Fury Road trailer – reaction

2014pt3_Maleficent_max posterMad Max, The Road Warrior, Beyond Thunderdome, the trilogy released between 1981 and 1985, launched the international career of Mel Gibson and that of director George Miller, whose eclectic career has encompassed The Witches of Eastwick, Lorenzo’s Oil, Babe: Pig in the City and Happy Feet, but who in 2015 returns to the characters he created with Byron Kennedy and James McCausland in Mad Max: Fury Road.

Drawing inspiration from injuries witnessed by Doctor Miller during his time working in a hospital emergency room and his recollections of the energy crisis in Australia in the early seventies, it told of a planet without a future, desperate people resorting to violence when the petrol and the water runs out, a bleak vision even more relevant in this new century. Tom Hardy takes the title role of Max Rockatansky with support from Charlize Theron and Nicholas Hoult.

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 5Garry Mac – I could watch Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron in just about anything, and the two of them teaming up gets me wet. I reckon this is all going to be about how good the story on which they hang the action is, but as a trailer this is brilliant.

Superbly shot, those explosions and gargantuan dust clouds look incredible, and I love the stuttering soundtrack made up of mechanical and industrial samples from the film itself.

Max is really all about action anyway, and I reckon this is part of an apparent resurgence of eighties style movies with a 21st century sensibility, which I love. As long as it’s brutal and uncompromising this is shaping up to be something pretty special. In a year already filling up with big movies, Mad Max could just be the one we never expected to hit hard, fast and loud and still be a cut above everything else in its field.

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 1Dario Persechino – That is a damned impressive trailer. It looks intense, insane, like it won’t be holding back, but most importantly it looks like Mad Max, but the beautiful, digital, shiny Blu-ray version. From being dubious when I first heard about it, I am really looking forward to it now.

Owen Williams – “My name is Max. My world is fire… and blood.”

Oh, shut up, you pretentious arse.

This trailer leaves me in the lovely position of knowing just as much about the film after watching it as I did before – absolutely nothing. Max gets chased, captured and given a make-over because who wants to be wandering around in post-apocalyptic Australia with a bushy beard and long hair?

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 3I’ve no idea why they were chasing him or what they want from him. Max spends the vast majority of the trailer restrained, which is boring. Look, he’s chained up behind a truck. Now he’s suspended whilst they tattoo gibberish on him. Ah, excellent – now he’s strapped to the front of a vehicle in a Lecter mask.

They give the titular character NOTHING TO DO in a trailer that is meant to make you salivate with anticipation at the privilege of being allowed to go to the cinema and give them your money to see it.

I took nothing from this that makes me even slightly inclined to go and watch it. I was never a fan of the originals, so there’s no nostalgia there for me. It was just a selection of explosions and stunts with nothing to bind them together.

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 6The trailer will appeal to certain people, I am sure. They’ll watch the bikes flying through the air and cars smashing into things and stuff going kaboom and think “That looks well cool!” despite the fact that they don’t actually know anything about that main ingredient for a film: the plot.

Michael Flett – Holy frakking cow!

I’ve never seen any of the previous Mad Max films, though I’ll try and catch at least one of them before this is released to see how it compares. Unlike many remakes, this one at least has authenticity to it as it’s directed by George Miller himself. If anyone has a right to go back to this, if anyone knows what the vision should be, it’s him. Of course, it also means if it’s a huge disaster, the studio are going to firmly pin that to him as well.

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 2I like that Tom Hardy isn’t being presented as a testosterone fuelled action hero; he’s surprisingly low key. The moment where he does the thumbs up through the window – it’s a  small moment, a gesture. He’s an ordinary guy in a world gone utterly mad. Tom is always very brave in the roles he takes, in the choices he makes in them; he’s not afraid of being vulnerable, of being a victim, and certainly we can see a lot of that here.

I’ve been a big fan of his for, what, fourteen years, and this could finally be the film that makes him a household name, and while he certainly deserves that level of recognition, I hope it doesn’t change him. I must say, though, it’s a change from the last time he spent a film behind the wheel of a car in Locke.

The tattoo scene is interesting – “O negative, universal donor, hi octane, heals fast..” Is this so he can be used as a donor or so if he is injured someone can help him? O negative is universal donor, but they can only accept O negative as a transfusion. Despite everything, there still seems to be some attempt at medical aid.

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 4It’s been a troubled production, with principal photography originally wrapping in December 2012, already over budget, and reshoots the following year, but whatever the story in the production office, they’ve come up with the goods. The film looks utterly beautiful, mesmerising and terrifying – that dust storm, those explosions, those deep blues of the night, and a lot of the stunts seem to have been done practically, though the environments have obviously been digitally enhanced, but the work is exquisite. I just hope that the rest of the film is as compelling as this.

I’ve never been interested in fast cars and explosions and boys and their guns, which is why I never bothered with Mad Max when they were first out, but the need to move to alternative fuel sources, both for transportation and in our everyday needs, to conserve resources, to make clean water available not only in developing countries but in our cities, this has never been more relevant. With a two-headed gecko leading the chase, it seems that competition for resources isn’t the only problem, either.

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 7When this film was announced, I had no interest in seeing either the original or this new version; now I want to see both. That’s one hell of a trailer. And I never would have thought of using a twisted version of an old Cat Stevens song, but it fits perfectly.

It also hit me that George Miller knows about desert power – anyone fancy him to make a new version of Dune?

Adam Dworak – “Holy frakking cow?” Sorry, Michael, but I don’t share your enthusiasm about the Mad Max remake.

I have seen all three original movies and loved them, and what was unusual about them was that each movie was better than the previous one and that is a unusual achievement. Great story, fantastic performances – was there anyone who didn’t love Auntie Entity – and a great dramatic soundtrack, but is there anything new or unique that the remake can bring to the story of Mad Max? One sure thing is that it looks stunning but is there anything more to it? My fear is that there isn’t.

2014pt3_Maleficent_mm 10The original Mad Max was always about human nature and human characters in an extreme environment and for me it was closer to Lord Of The Flies than to The Fast and the Furious. From what I’ve read about Fury Road and from what I’ve now seen in this trailer it will just be a two hour long car chase through a post nuclear wasteland with explosions and lots of shooting.

Les Anderson – Respectful to the original, thrilling, spectacular, kinetic. Must-see.

ABS – Flat out like a lizard shagging as Ducky’s dad used to say. Never mind who he is (dead set leg-end mind you), it’s a beautiful bit of strine for youse. Which hey presto segues nicely into penny for your thoughts on the bad boy debut trailer from Mr Miller and co featuring the eponymous Max. It would seem that life in apocalyptic Woop Woop, waaaaay beyond the black stump is a hoon’s paradise and will indeed be flat out. As in pedal to the metal. Also it appears it may be a pyromaniac paradise too. And weapon fetishists appear to get a look in. If I hadn’t already overloaded this precis with Aussie vernacular I’d say strewth. So instead I’ll say it looks bonzer.

Mad Max: Fury Road is scheduled for release on 15th May 2015

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