Mad Max Fury Road
Reason for the Rating: Intense sequences of violence throughout, and for disturbing images.
Plot Summary: In a post-apocalyptic world, Mad Max and a rebel help four women escape the tyrannical rule of a crazy man.
PopFam Recommends: If adrenaline junkies in your family like explosions and car chases, this is the movie for you. If you're looking for a good story to go along with the action, this isn't going to satisfy.
Who would have thought a Mad Max movie would be nominated for an Academy Award, let alone ten? And Best Picture at that?
Mad Max: Fury Road centers on Max (Tom Hardy) and Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron) in a post-apocalyptic time, when fighting for the necessities of life is an everyday occurrence. Captured by the War Boys, followers of Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne), Max is taken to the Citadel, a mountain hideaway where Joe supplies food and water to hundreds of people who have taken refuge with him. Joe isn’t a kind leader, though, giving water sparsely with the wisdom to “not become addicted to water.” Sickness is rampant and survival is of highest importance. At the Citadel, Max is imprisoned and used as a “universal donor,” replacing blood to any warrior who needs a transfusion.
When Furiosa escapes the Citadel with four of Joe’s wives, Joe gives chase with his fiercest War Boys. Nux (Nicholas Hoult), an injured and fanatical warrior refuses to let an opportunity pass where he can show his devotion to Joe, despite being connected to Max by an IV line. Strapping Max to the front of his vehicle, Nux joins the warriors as they chase down Furiosa and her War Machine. If you know anything about Mad Max, you know he’s not one to accept a fate like this, and taking advantage in a strategic moment, Max frees himself and aligns himself with Furiosa on her escape.
The interesting thing about Fury Road, is that there's really little that IS interesting in the movie. If you take away fighting, explosions, and car chases, there isn't really a story of consequence. Which is possibly why it didn't earn a nomination in screenwriting, but in visual effects, costuming, makeup, editing, and sound. I really can't figure out the Best Picture nomination. It's not that the acting is horrid, but the dialogue itself is limited, leading to shallow and superficial characters. Nothing about them drew me in and made me care about the fate of any character. Yes, the cinematography was amazing, and the special effects were pretty awe-inspiring, but without the character development, it was a bit lopsided as a whole.
Parents should be aware that while they don't have to be concerned about language in this film there is a lot of violence and death, the backside of a naked woman, and several women scantily clad. Additionally, the warriors believe that if they die in battle they will awaken in Valhalla, the mythological "heaven" of the Norse. Nux is heard saying several times, "I live, I die, I live again." It's an interesting take on the afterlife in a modern world.
Overall, while Fury Road is short on depth and deep in action, it's an amazing visual movie that will keep your eyes glued to the screen.
Let’s Talk About It
Use these questions to spark discussion among family members who are interested in this movie:
• If you were to live through an apocalyptic event, do you think evil would rise and conquer good, as portrayed in this movie?
• Food, water, and, for Immortan Joe, reproducing were the most coveted possessions. Based on how you spend your time and money, what are your most coveted possessions?
• Nux is focused on dying with honor and entering Valhalla with the other warriors who have gone before him. He often says, "I live, I die, I live again." How does his passion for serving Immortan Joe and dying with honor similar to the faith of Christians?
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