I know everyone is talking about mad Max: Fury Road, and there’s not much that I can say that hasn’t already been said. But I need to write something down because I honestly don’t remember the last time I was this blown away by a movie. In fact, I don’t know if I have ever been this blow away.
Fury Road is what the world would look like it there was an apocalypse and the only people who survived were the cast of Cirque du Soleil. It’s two hours of car chases, explosions, gunfire and complete batshit insanity. On paper, it sounds like just another big dumb action movie. But it’s actually so much more than that.
This film is breathtakingly beautiful. Every shot is a work of art. The high speed battles play out like a dance across the desert, with incredible set pieces and spectacular choreography. The design is wonderful, from the spectacular cars to the grotesque villains. Seriously, there is a character whose sole purpose is to ride around on a massive truck made of amps and shred a guitar that shoots fireballs. Can you honestly say you’ve ever seen anything like that before?
But the thing that makes me the most excited about this film is the characters. Max might have his name in the title, but this is Furiosa’s film. She’s the one driving the narrative (and the truck, actually). Max just happens to be along for the ride. Charlize Theron is phenomenal; a perfect mix of power and vulnerability. She isn’t just a “strong female character”. She’s a strong character, period. Furiosa can proudly take her place in the movie heroine hall of fame next to the likes of Ellen Ripley, Sarah Connor and Beatrix Kiddo.
Furiosa isn’t the only strong woman in the film either. Her cargo of slave brides are active participants in their own rescue every step of the way. They aren’t as skilled or as strong as other characters, but they fight just as hard for survival as everyone else. And the camera never leers at them. Not even once. No gratuitous boob shots, no lingering camera angles creeping up their thighs. They don’t feel objectified at all. In fact, they are more human than any other human in the film.
Some men are calling for a boycott of Fury Road, claiming it has a “feminist agenda”. And they’re right, it does have a feminist agenda, and it’s fucking awesome! The women in this film are basically fighting to overthrow the patriarchy that has kept them beaten down. But that doesn’t mean this is a man-hating movie. Furiosa and Max are portrayed as equals in every way. And it’s only by working together as equals that they are able to overthrow the system and establish a new world order.
I’m just so excited about this movie. As soon as it was finished I wanted to watch it again. I’m even listening to the soundtrack as I type this. This is the sci-fi fantasy action movie we’ve been waiting for. What a lovely day!
Edit: As if I didn’t need another reason to love this movie, I just found out that there’s a orchestral cover of Radiohead’s Street Spirit at the end of the trailer.