George Miller’s, “Mad Max: Fury Road,” has accomplished something that few have before it. For all intents and purposes, it’s a summer blockbuster, yet here it is standing proud among an elite group of Oscar nominees duking it out for this year’s top prize at the Academy Awards.
It’s earned its place, and while it most certainly will not take home the top prize, Miller’s latest “Mad Max” incarnation certainly holds its own in this category.
Set in a post-apocalyptic reality, where those who control the water control the world, “Fury Road,” is a non-stop adrenaline rush from beginning to end.
The film opens with the capture of the series namesake, Max, who is played perfectly by Tom Hardy. Max is taken captive by the brainwashed War Boys of Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne) and turned into a human blood bag for one of the War Boys, Nux (Nicholas Hoult).
Meanwhile, it’s discovered that one of Joe’s lieutenants, Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron), has gone rogue and escaped with the warlord’s five wives. Theron is perfectly cast in this high-action, but incredibly complex role.
Fueled by rage, Joe sends his entire fleet after Furiosa, which includes Max (in his blood bag role).
Through a series of epic car chases and crashes, Max ends up in the passenger and driver’s seat of Furiosa and the wives’ rig. We learn that this tough group of women is in search of the “Green Place,” an idyllic utopia that Furiosa remembers from her childhood.
What starts out as a relationship built on mutual benefit and pure survival instinct, quickly evolves into one of actual concern and caring. The stark contrast between the dog eat dog world created by Joe and his War Boys, and that of compassion and respect exhibited by the wives makes this more than your average highspeed, thriller, blockbuster.
Of course, aside from the films exploration of themes such as survival, vengeance, home, and redemption, it’s also got some pretty kick-ass car chases. Just the sheer scale of the practical and digital effects is enough to make this “little blockbuster that could” deserving of all the attention it’s received. Add in the deep, compelling story, and that makes it more than worthy of its Oscar nod.
…just for fun: