Redemption [ri-demp-shuh n] noun. –
This is for you, George Miller. I don’t know if you chose the wrong theme for your film, or you forgot what you were writing halfway through, but if you want a lesson on choosing a theme, then go read this. It might help you focus on the right theme next time (the word you were looking for was ‘salvation,’ not redemption).
Now that’s out of the way, let me tell you what I thought about Mad Max: Fury Road:
- Promising at first, but you lost me after the sandstorm (Why didn’t Max or Furiosa do anything cool?)
- Boring action sequences, especially near the climax
- Can’t wait for the next one
Look, there were so many things wrong with Mad Max, I’m astonished to see that so many people loved it. Did we not watch the same movie? The plot, the dialogue, and oh, goodness, all of the missed opportunities. Actually, this article written by Spike Friedman from The Daily Dot explains exactly everything that was wrong with this movie.
It sums up perfectly all of the things that hurt to watch in Mad Max: Fury Road.
But you know what? I still enjoyed it – the cinematography, no, ALL of the visuals of this movie were outstanding. You could almost taste the burnt sand, you could almost smell the guzzoline and gunpowder – and some of those action pieces alone were worth watching (if only I cared about the characters!).
For writers, one thing redeemed Mad Max – it’s Style.
George Miller wasn’t breaking ground with the apocalyptic setting, but it was amazing how he created a world that was equal parts real and surreal, a world in which everything could happen, no matter how ridiculous.
This is the main reason I brought up Spike Friedman’s article – in it, Spike criticizes Mad Max: Fury Road for not making sense – but it did. I mean, visually, you almost always knew what was going on. The characters were fleshed out with apparel that they couldn’t have possibly found in the desert, but it just made sense that they had what they had. The world was supposed to be a wasteland, (as Spike points out, “Where are the junkyards in the landscape from which this shit is being pulled?”), but none of that really matters for the story.
George Miller stylized reality, without turning his movie into a visual comic book (a la Frank Miller). The world of Mad Max was still very real, somehow connected and disconnected to our own world. It was rich and colorful and visceral and sent my imagination flying in a way that a realistic apocalyptic setting couldn’t.
So, I thank you, George Miller, and I can’t wait to see your next film.
What did you think of Mad Max: Fury Road? What do you think about this stylization of reality? Do you see yourself writing stories with a similar disconnection from reality?
Tell me your thoughts in the comment below! Don’t forget to leave a like and follow the blog. And if you’re interested in reading my newest short story you can download the ebook from Smashwords here, or read the post online here.
Image courtesy of Vishal via Wallpaperseries.com