Mad Max: Fury Road test screening creates early buzz – SMH – 02 May.14

<i>Mad Max: Fury Road</i> is a 'bad-ass truck chase' for practically the whole movie.

Mad Max: Fury Road is a ‘bad-ass truck chase’ for practically the whole movie.

A test screening of the first Mad Max film in almost 30 years has drawn critical acclaim and provoked a buzz on social media.

The Australian-American post-apocalyptic action film – in which Mad Max is caught up with a group of people fleeing across the Wasteland in a War Rig – was shown at Warner Bros’ Burbank studios last night.

<i>Mad Max: Fury Road</i> director George Miller and crew position cameras at NSW filming location, Penrith Lakes. Centre from left to right: Chris Hansford (Dolly Grip), John Seale (DOP), George Miller (Director), PJ Voeten (1st AD & Producer), Guy Norris (Action Unit Director & Stunt Coordinator).

Mad Max: Fury Road director George Miller and crew position cameras at NSW filming location, Penrith Lakes. Centre from left to right: Chris Hansford (Dolly Grip), John Seale (DOP), George Miller (Director), PJ Voeten (1st AD & Producer), Guy Norris (Action Unit Director & Stunt Coordinator). Photo: Jasin Boland

Titled Mad Max: Fury Road, it features Tom Hardy in the starring role – the first time Max has not been played by Mel Gibson. The movie was due to be shot at Broken Hill in New South Wales but unexpected rain, which turned the requisite parched landscape green, forced the producers to shift to Africa.

“This movie feels like thirty years of [director George Miller] holding in passion for a world that he built so long ago, exploding on the screen,” wrote Randy from Action Figure Times.

“You, remember the third act of The Road Warrior [the second Mad Max film], the bad-ass truck chase that is still hailed as a masterpiece of filmmaking? You do? Good.

Bankable ... Mel Gibson in <i>Mad Max</i>.

The original … Mel Gibson in Mad Max.

“Because that’s what this whole movie pretty much is – and it works! A chase that goes long and deep into the heart of Miller’s post-apocalyptic world, trying to get out of the Wasteland. It opens up and hardly slows down.”

“This IS the kind of Mad Max II/The Road Warrior on steroids, go-big-or-go-home, bug-nuts crazy, toss-you-in-the-deep-end mythology and put-it-all-out-there-in-case-we-never-make-another-one Mad Max: Fury Road.”

Though the test audience was shown a two hour rough cut with incomplete music, sound and visual effects (the movie is not due for release until May of 2015), most were effusive.

<i>Mad Max: Fury Road</i> stars Tom Hardy in the title role.

Mad Max: Fury Road stars Tom Hardy in the title role.

“I can’t see anyone not liking it,” tweeted @Breeza7.

“You are in for a treat,” wrote Adam Lamar.

“Weird to not see Gibson as Max but Tom Hardy holds it down just fine,” Kevin Craig West posted on Facebook. “Great action sequences and amazing post apocalyptic vehicles and costuming with awesome makeup.”

Hardy’s accent was described by one person as “not American … but not British. Hard to explain”.

The blog Ain’t It Cool News said: “Given we’ve yet to see any real footage, [Fury Road] is probably the most intriguing unknown quantity lurking out there on the cinematic landscape … it sounds like Fury Road is going to be worth the very long wait … it’s good to hear that people are losing their minds over a film that should make you lose your mind.”

The official synopsis describes the film as set in “the furthest reaches of our planet, in a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, and most everyone is crazed fighting for the necessities of life”.

“Within this world of fire and blood exist two rebels on the run who just might be able to restore order. There’s Max (Tom Hardy from The Dark Knight Rises), a man of action and a man of few words, who seeks peace of mind following the loss of his wife and child in the aftermath of the chaos. And Furiosa (Charlize Theron from Prometheus), a woman of action and a woman who believes her path to survival may be achieved if she can make it across the desert back to her childhood homeland.”

The film was shot in 2012 and 2013, and is reported to have gone “significantly over budget”.

Early last year, environmentalists accused the producers of damaging Namibia’s sensitive ecosystem while filming.

The first Mad Max movie – which brought Mel Gibson to the attention of Hollywood upon its release in 1980 – was a box office success, and is credited with boosting the Australian New Wave film market.


One comment

  1. Cannot wait to see this.
    Wont be the same without Mel, though.
    Yet, I hear he is in it in a cameo?

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