Editor’s note: We all love movies, but rather than ask a syndicated columnist who has never visited our beautiful High Desert, we commissioned our own local movie critic: Nolan P. Smith to review films and give us a local perspective. Enjoy!
Review by Nolan P. Smith
Reboots can be boring, flat and muddled; I think we can all agree on that. Sometimes, there are films that don’t need a reboot, they don’t need to be brought to a whole new generation of viewers. I placed the Mad Max series in that category. Maybe its because the Mad Max franchise made its debut before I was even born, or maybe the crazy hair just didn’t work in my eyes. I heard a reboot was coming, as well as a video game, and I was less than enthusiastic.
After taking the dive and watching Mad Max: Fury Road, I can say that I am glad the franchise is back; the film was insanely good.
Directed by the same man who directed the past Mad Max films, George Miller, Fury Road focuses on two characters; the redemption seeking Furiosa (Charlize Theron) and the man pushed to the brink in a world turned wasteland, Max (Tom Hardy). Set behind a nightmarish desertscape, we see the two on the run from an army of scavengers, led by the self-proclaimed god, Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne).
One thing I noticed right off the bat is the lack of dialogue. The film contains very little dialogue from any characters, especially from Max himself. Where some might see this as a fault, I see it as a strength. We get to see the action, both fist to fist and vehicular, take center stage. We get to see the amazing cinematography take center stage, all while the film itself moves by perfectly. The environments we see here nail the whole wasteland feel; if the world went to hell, I have to think this is what it would look like.
By the end of the film, I was a Mad Max fan. I think Hardy pulled off the almost silent hero, and the supporting cast all took a more of a leading role in themselves, including the odd, maniacal Nux (Nicholas Houlte). The action is non stop, the intense moments keep you on the edge of your seat, and once the credits roll, you will be hoping for a sequel to get green lit. Whether you are a fan of the old franchise or not, go see Fury Road if you are looking for a high octane, mesmerizing romp through one of the best cinematic wastelands I have seen.