Best Action Movie of the Year 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Review - Screening at the 68th Cannes Film Festival

Mad Max: Fury Road film  distributed by Warner Bros will have an out of competition screening at the 68th Cannes Film Festival, a black tie evening gala at the Grand Theatre Lumiere on May 14th, 2015.  The Oscar-winning filmmaker George Miller premiered the original Mad Max at Cannes in 1979 to screen it for market buyers.  Miller also was part of the jury in Cannes in 1988 and 1999.  "Mad Max: Fury Road" will open worldwide following its Cannes unveiling on May 15th.

George Miller, whose last major film project was “Happy Feet,” directed “Mad Max: Fury Road” from a screenplay he wrote with Brendan McCarthy and Nico Lathouris.  “Mad Max: Fury Road” marks a return to Miller’s Mad Max franchise that began with the original 1979 “Mad Max” and its sequels “Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior” in 1981 and “Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome” in 1985. The massive audience around the world has waited 30 years for the incubation and  return of the legendary franchise with the film “Mad Max: Fury Road.”  The lead actor is Tom Hardy, a character originally portrayed by Mel Gibson in all three of the previous films.  The film required someone young to perform as “Max” and since Mel Gibson aged during the many years of delay before the filming he decided not to step into the role the fourth time.  Tom Hardy was the perfect fit to fill the iconic role off  Max in “Mad Max: Fury Road.” The film is predicted to be one of the best action movie of the year.

CAST

Tom Hardy (“The Dark Knight Rises”) stars as the title role in “Mad Max: Fury Road,” the fourth in the franchise’s history.  Oscar winner Charlize Theron (“Monster,” “Prometheus”) stars as the Imperator, Furiosa.  The film also stars Nicholas Hoult (“X-Men: Days of Future Past”) as Nux; Hugh Keays-Byrne (“Mad Max,” “Sleeping Beauty”) as Immortan Joe; Nathan Jones (“Conan the Barbarian”) as Rictus Erectus; Josh Helman (“X-Men: Days of Future Past”) as Slit; collectively known as The Wives, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley (“Transformers: Dark of the Moon”) is Splendid, Riley Keough (“Magic Mike”) is Capable, Zoë Kravitz (“Divergent”) plays Toast, Abbey Lee is The Dag, and Courtney Eaton is Fragile.  Also featured in the movie are John Howard, Richard Carter, singer/songwriter/performer iOTA, Angus Sampson, Jennifer Hagan, Megan Gale, Melissa Jaffer, Melita Jurisic, Gillian Jones, and Joy Smithers.  

The post-apocalyptic world of “Mad Max: Fury Road” has no rule of law, no power grids, no water, and no mercy. The movie is a creation of an exceptional, fearless, and poetic masterpiece. The chase is the real rush of the film.  “Furiosa” (Charlize Theron) escapes from the Citadel, a harbor of water and a vast wasteland that supports what's left of human life and is run by a  cruel and brutal man called “Joe” (Hugh Keays-Byrne). “Furiosa” rescues a group of women known as “Five Wives” from the Citadel who are used as slaves for procreation. “Furiosa” has made her purpose to bring the wives to "the green place", a heavenly habitat where she was taken from as a child.  They are on the run from the tyrannical leader “Joe” and his bloodthirsty military force, the “War Boys.” “Joe” rules the Wasteland and he wants his wives back because they are healthy and fertile to breed the future generation of the human race that he wants to have his genetics and be in his own evil image.  “Max” (Tom Hardy) meets “Furiosa” and the group of women and although he is very knowledgeable about  the desert’s dangers, he refuses at first to help out.  Later he only has one chance to escape and relies on “Furiosa” and the “Five Wives” in order to survive along with the youthful War Boy, “Nux” (Nicholas Hoult) and together they find a way out and their way to salvation.

Mad Max: Fury Road filming was originally set to take place in Broken Hill, Australia where the previous Mad Max movies were shot.  However, due to the rain which made Miller and the cast and crew wait 18 months, production shifted to Africa.  The movie was shot mainly in Namibia but the filming also took place at Potts Hill and Penrith Lakes in Western Sydney.  Miller said that the movie  was made 90% with practical effects and the second unit director and supervising stunt coordinator Guy Norris were in charge of over 150 stunt performers, which included Cirque du Soleil performers and Olympic athletes.  The computer generating images (special effects)  “only” intruded with the massive dust clouds and certain personnel and vehicular wipeouts.  The action of the movie is mind-boggling.  Miller pulled it off by creating innumerable elements to keep the action powerful and show the  mindset of a barbarian society. The chase scene action has vehicles with bending poles sticking up from them that allow marauders atop them to be lowered into enemy trucks for hand-to-hand combat. An insane heavy metal guitarist was affixed to one of the Citadel's rigs, whose raucous wailing and flame-throwing ability perfectly express this world's extremity.  The film has an immaculate picture and is utterly visual with an intoxicating plot, acting, screenplay, choreography, and stunts.  The film is like a documentary presented with a magnificent narrative.  The eyes of Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron are exceptionally powerful, the audience will feel the energy of both characters as they band together and are totally united by their life purpose of survival, peace, and redemption.

Cinematographer John Seale, who came out of retirement to shoot Fury Road, outfitted his camera crew with six Arri Alexas, as well as a number of Canon EOS 5Ds that were used as crash cams for the action sequences. The musical score for Mad Max: Fury Road was composed by Junkie XL.

The roar of nearly 150 cars, trucks and bikes (hand-crafted for “Mad Max: Fury Road”) and engines are captivating and the vigorous sound of guitars will put the mind of the audience in trance just like being part of a virtual video game that is vibrant, energetic, and with an ongoing motion.

The film had its world premiere on May 7th, 2015 at the TCL Chinese Theatre on the historic Hollywood Walk of Fame and also an advance screening in Austin, TX at the Alamo Drafthouse on South Lamar.  “Mad Max: Fury Road” was followed by a Q&A with director and mastermind George Miller and actor Hugh Keays-Byrne and was moderated by the film director Robert Rodriguez.   The Q&A session was live streamed to eleven other Alamo locations.

Robert Rodriguez commented, “What an insane movie! It keeps your imagination going.”  and George Miller said, “You don’t have to be crazy to create a Mad Max Movie, but it helps.”

Robert Rodriguez said that George Miller redefines the action in cinema. Miller said he had a crew of over 1,000 people, real world, real people in a real desert like a military exercise. He was worried about the safety and stated that it was a very tough film to make.

Aren’t you excited to watch this exhilarating movie this summer in 2015?  Each scene will make you feel like you're on an insane adventure along with the characters.

Mad Max on the Croisette, Grand Theatre Lumiere GTL 8:30| 19:30, 2H00

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