Tom Hardy Goes Radio Silent in ‘Mad Max Fury Road’ Movie Review
Mad Max Fury Road stormed into theaters toting a Rotten Tomatoes Certified Fresh Rating of 98% and an average 8.7/10 score for an action film. Both all but unheard of high marks for reviews. However, while I sat through the mayhem and looked around a capacity crowd for my screening, I couldn’t help but taking in the silent crowd juxtaposed with the chase carnage on screen and wonder…what are we all missing?
There’s no sense in relaying a plot of Mad Max to you, because plot and story clearly take a back seat to on screen action. Loosely, there is a water shortage in a desolate future that is controlled by an evil dude with five wives or something like that. We meet Max when he is scooped up by the baddies and is reawakened in what I believe is as a blood supplier to one of the bad cronies. Furiosa, an adversary of the baddies who breaks off on her own agenda, gets tracked down by the bad guy set, until Max helps her and they form an uneasy alliance to achieve (what end again?). None of it really matters anyway.
You are here to witness spectacle and exciting action and on that front, I supposed Max and director/creator George Romero (also of the original Mad Max films) delivers. The whole film is a long chase with general carnage in the desert along the way. Thrilling CGI and real stunts take place to some effect I guess, it’s just that none of it means anything. The audience, myself included, didn’t appear to be having much in the way of fun, and with no story to engage us, to me that is a virtual failure.
I can’t really rip on the film in full, because there aren’t really any specific expectations you can have upon going to see it, you just sit back and take it in. There is just no emotional involvement to the would be excitement so therefore it all lacks a certain punch. Innovative silence and chase scenes mixed with good enough performances (particularly Charlize Theron as Furiosa) aside – it’s hard to tell who is bad and who is good, everybody looks the same and despite all of the weirdness, it just didn’t add up to more than a shoulder shrug for me. I don’t think I am remotely alone in this thought. I’m not mad about Max or Romero’s attempts at entertainment, but I’m also not prepping another trip down Fury Road any time soon. Whatever.