The Valhalla Highway

Mad Max: Fury Road

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Director: George Miller

Cast: Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Zoe Kravitz, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Riley Keough, Josh Helman

The much anticipated fourth instalment of the Mad Max series synonymous with industrial chic and post-apocalyptic desert car chase sequences arrives with a vengeance without Mel Gibson.

Thirty years from the last film, George Miller directs Mad Max: Fury Road with British actor Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises) impressively taking over the role of Mad Max along with South African born Oscar Winner Charlize Theron (Monster) as the shaven head Imperator Furiosa, a determined woman who escapes the clutches of an evil desert war lord, Immortan Joe played by Hugh Keays-Byrne, who ruthlessly guards the scarce resources of the planet’s water and food for his own anarchic empire, aptly titled the Citadel.

Mad Max: Fury Road is a brilliant energetic and subversive film, an allegorical road trip highlighting the scarcity of the earth’s resources including oil and water, but more significantly, the action and stunt sequences are truly phenomenal. As the diabolical Immortan Joe and his crazed band of war boys, white-faced and vicious chase Imperator across what is dubbed Valhalla’s Highway, a vast epic journey into the end of eternity.

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Shot in Namibia that beautiful desert African country, Mad Max: Fury Road does not disappoint especially with suitably savage and believable performances by Theron and Hardy, both whom have the enormous talent to make this film utterly believable, when even at times the stunts are so unbelievable.

In a clever plot twist, there are a bunch of supermodels and actresses cast in Mad Max: Fury Road including Victoria Secret model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Elvis Presley’s granddaughter Riley Keough along with Zoe Kravitz along with a frenetic Nicholas Hoult (A Single Man) cast as Nux a renegade warboy who is desperate to break free from the tyranny, but gets consumed by the mayhem.

The sets, sound editing and stunts are truly amazing and should definitely be seen on the big screen especially the final chase sequence involving the war rig, a huge menacing oil tanker deftly driven by Imperator with the help of Mad Max as they desperately try to elude the menacing attempts at capture by Immortan Joe and his vicious gang of thugs.

The script is not particularly enlightening but then again this is Mad Max, but the construction of the film is impressive, like a desert opera in three acts, with each act more savage and gripping than the last, a crazed action chase film in a post-apocalyptic setting with no hints of redemption or salvation.

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Director George Miller does a fascinating job at re-imagining the Mad Max tropes for the 21st century audience, placing more emphasis on the value of scarce resources and on the fact that girls can also kick ass too, especially the formidable collective known as The Wives (Huntington-Whiteley, Kravitz and the gorgeous gang) subverting the traditional male orientated chase film and producing a more explicit and frenetic action film that will appeal to all audiences who enjoyed the original Mad Max trilogy.

Incidentally Valhalla in Viking mythology was where warriors go to die after fighting bravely in battle, in this case the chaotic Valhalla highway is paved with destructive intentions, cruelty, action and anarchy. See it to believe it! Highly recommended viewing for lovers of films like The Book of Eli and Max Payne.

 

 

 

 

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