Best Motion Picture of the Year
Best Achievement in Directing
Best Achievement in Cinematography
Best Achievement in Film Editing
Best Achievement in Costume Design
Best Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling
Best Achievement in Sound Mixing
Best Achievement in Sound Editing
Best Achievement in Visual Effects
Best Achievement in Production Design
Well, what can I even begin to say about Mad Max? – Tbh, not much.
This film was universally acknowledged to be a bit of an Academy outlier by the Queens. The nomination of an action film is unusual, and we approached this viewing with high expectations.
Mad Max starts with a promising exposition: the world is set in a post-apocalyptic nightmare, water is an elitist luxury, and people are barely maintaining their humanity. Except Max, of course, played by Tom Hardy. We learn barely anything about Max from a voice over at the beginning, detailing his past as a cop and a road warrior (all aspects explained by the first film) and the fact that he is now in captivity as a blood donor for this dsytopia’s tyrannical ruler.
After a bit of hustle and bustle, which I still don’t fully understand, Max finds himself aiding Furiosa (Charlize Theron) in a high speed chase from the warlord in what seems to be the two hour climax of the entire film. Furiosa, desperately searching for her childhood home, travels with five of the former brides of the aforementioned warlord. As a side note, this plot line has been met with both acclaim and disgust for its feminist implications.
As Max and Furiosa sort of find a bond and sort of come to accept their realities, the audience ultimately feels unsatisfied by the roll of credits. Max is still mad, from what I can tell, water is still one step from nonexistent and though Furiosa and her gang of bad ass brides now lead the post-apocalyptic nightmare, the conclusion seems far from ideal. I’m all for a sad ending, but after sitting through 120 minutes of dessert scenery and bad music, I would have liked to have felt that the plot moved somewhat.
To give credit where its due, I have to say, the plethora of nominations received by this film were more than well-deserved. The makeup was amazing, turning each character into their own reflection of horror, the visual effects seemed unreal in the most believable way, and the cinematography blows some of the other films out of the water. Many loved Mad Max, and this is just one Queens opinion, but this film deserves the Oscar for Best Picture about as much as the first one did.