Movie Review: The Road Warrior (1981)

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Time for part two in my series of reviews based on the original “Mad Max” trilogy before “Fury Road” comes out on DVD/Blu-Ray. So sit back, relax, enjoy a cold drink and have a good time while reading this.

Ladies and gentlemen… “The Road Warrior”.

The world has gone to shit. Everything is a huge wasteland and fuel has become the most precious commodity. Once again we follow Max Rockatansky (Mel Gibson) as he travels through the wasteland, together with a dog. So one day he comes upon a small community that has a pretty big problem with a group of bandits led by a man called Lord Humungus (Kjell Nilsson). So he agrees to help them get rid of this bandit problem. And I’m not gonna lie, I was very invested in this story. Sure, there isn’t much of a real story per se, but it is still riveting to say the least. And I never felt like the plot dragged at any point, it had perfect pacing in my opinion.

The characters in “The Road Warrior” are… colorful, to say the least. Let’s start with Max, a pretty cynicla guy who Mel Gibson plays perfectly. What I also like about him is the fact that he isn’t your typical action hero who survives everything and never really gets a scratch. He is in peril through a lot of the movie and shows that he is vulnerable which makes him so much more interesting. Kjell Nilsson is also great as the buff, mask wearing Lord Humungus. Show stealer: Bruce Spence as a kind of crazy guy with a gyrocopter and a fascination with snakes. He was great and entertaining as hell. Honestly, everybody was great in the movie.

Once again the score was composed by Brian May, and once again I have to mention that it isn’t Brian May from the rock band Queen. Anyway, holy shit he really got this score right. As you might remember (if you’ve been here for more than a few weeks), I didn’t like the score for the first “Mad Max” movie that much. But with “The Road Warrior” he really impressed me because this is a terrific score. Not only does it help keep the adrenaline of the action scenes going, but it also managed to have some pretty good drama to it. Good job Brian, you did well.

Just like the first movie, “The Road Warrior” is directed by George Miller. And once again he did a pretty great job at it, getting a lot of great shots and like I said in the “Story/Plot” part, he paced it perfectly. Here’s a fun fact for your butts: This movie was shot in sequence. It’s not always easy to find a movie that has been shot in sequence, but they pulled it off. Also, fucking hell, I love the action in the movie! While the action in “Mad Max” was really good, the action here is what I would call fantastic. It has a lot more intensity than the first movie, it is a little mroe plentiful than the first movie and it is overall much better than in the first movie. And all of it is practical… it almost brings me to tears how much I love that fact.

This movie has been very well-received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 98% positive rating (100% is you go by “Top Critics” only” and a “Fresh” Ceritification. On Metacritic it has a score of 76/100. Roger Ebert gave the movie 3,5/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,6/10.

“The Road Warrior” took everything good/great about the first “Mad Max” movie and improved on it as much as possible. The story (despite not being there as much) is better, the characters and performances are better, the music is much better, the directing is a little better and the action is some of the best I have ever seen. Time for my final score. AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH. My final score for “The Road Warrior” is a 9,86/10. It gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

“The Road Warrior” is now reviewed.

You wanna get out of here, you talk to me.

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