Movie Review: Mad Max (1979)

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I know, I know, I am a bit alte in the game when it comes to the “Mad Max” franchise. But hey, better late than never, right? Anyway, time for another series of reviews based on a movie franchise. And this time it is for (if it wasn’t obvious already) “Mad Max”. So I will try to review all original movies before “Mad Max: Fury Road” comes out on DVD/Blu-Ray. And yes I know, I am not done with my series of “Jaws” reviews, but I swear that I will get that done soon enough. But for now, let’s talk about the first of a series of Australian movies.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Mad Max”.

The world has almost gone to shit (that’s a new one). There is still a little bit of order left in the world with police officers still existing to keep everything in control. In this movie we follow officer Max Rockatansky (Mel Gibson) who have to take up arms again to try to take out a motorcycle gang to avenge his wife and son. That is basically the plot in a nutshell, strange thing is that it doesn’t happen until fairly late in the movie (mild spoilers I guess). Not that the plot is slow, not at all. The plot moves at a really good pace, it’s jsut so weird that the main plot of the movie comes in at such a late point. Anyhow, the plot is really good.

The characters are prety good I guess, it just seems like no one is completely sane (SIdenote: I guess that is why they call it “MAD Max”). How is the acting then? It’s fine at best, no one gives really a noteworthy performance in that sense. I guess the best one comes from Gibson who actually is really good in the movie. However, everyone else is at best fine. The bad guys however (for the most part) are rather meh. I think the actors confused crazy for weird and awkward. Because the main bad guy (Sidenote: The one called “Toecutter” played by Hugh Keays-Byrne) doesn’t really give that great of a performance here. Like I said, I think he confused crazy and psychotic with weird and awkward. And that kind of drags it down a bit for me. Gibson’s really good though, so that’s something!

The score was composed by Brian May, no, not the guitarist from Queen, but an Australian man who did music for a bunch of Australian movies. Anyway, it was good, definitely a product of it’s era. You notice that this music was composed back in the 70’s, it has the sort of 70’s action-thriller style. I don’t know how to explain it better, that is the only way I can explain it. And it was pretty good, fit the movie well enough.

When you watch this movie, would you expect it to come from the same guy that directed “Happy Feet”? Because I sure as shit didn’t. Because this is a violent and weird movie that is as far from a movie about cute dancing penguins as possible. Anyway, this movie was directed by George Miller who did a great job with directing this movie that apparently was on a very thin budget. The shots look great and he did an overall great job. And the action in the movie is really cool too. They did a lot of crazy stunts with the vehicles and I love seeing these types of real stunts because we never get them these days. Fuckin’ CGI…

This movie has been pretty well-received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 89% positive rating with a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 67/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,0/10.

“Mad Max” is a mixed bag of stuff. The story is good, the acting is for the most part fine with Mel Gibson being really good and the main bad guy not being that great, the music is fine, the action/stunts are great and the direction/camera work being great. Time for my final score. *Australian Phrase*. My final score for “Mad Max” is an 8,77/10. I think it’s worth buying.
Worth buying

Review of “Mad Max” is done.

He’s a very, very Maaaaad Max…

 

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