You have no right to be commenting on Mad Max if you have not watched the originals! They reflected the rage and angst of the “Limits to growth” reports of the 1970’s, and the horrible feeling of dread that we were running all our resources down without planning for what comes next. They reflected the potential for society to dissolve in a series of lawless acts, and barbaric culture shifts. They reflected on hopelessness.
The first: a cop in the outback loses his mind as his wife is murdered by thugs near the end of civilisation. The second: Max wanders the wasteland, law and order long gone and the world at the whim of road warriors riding wild around the outback, threatening a last outpost of compassion. The third: a fantasy about children around an oasis in the desert, and what comes next. ‘Fury Road’ seems to be somewhere after the Mad Max 2, when his legendary car is destroyed.
I was a teenager when these movies came out, and they were more than just action movies. They mourned the sheer waste and horror of an environmental apocalypse, the loss of so many good things in the name of short-term profits and the blindness with which we are stumbling forward into oblivion. Focusing on who plays what, and how good they look, is like analysing the colour scheme on the hydrogen bomb about to drop on your city. You’ve somewhat missed the point.
This is “The Road” for movie-goers; it rages against the machine, it roars as the darkness rolls in. For are we planning for a world without oil? Are we planning for abrupt climate change? Are we saving our forests? No. We’re using it all up exponentially faster. Mad Max warns us what comes next. Our topsoil dries up and blows away and nothing is left but desert! You need to watch the trailer again. Listen for the children’s voice: they know what’s going on. “You’ve killed the world!” these children accuse us from one potential future. But are we listening? Your comment: “Tom Hardy, it’s time to accept that you look great!” Alas. It seems not.