DVD review: Mad Max: Fury Road (8 out of 10)

Tom Hardy as Max
Tom Hardy as Max
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Mad Max: Fury Road (15), DVD £10, Blu-ray £19.99

Since Terminator 2 and Jurassic Park stunned audiences in the ’90s, computer generated imagery (CGI) has become essential for most summer blockbusters.

Superhero movies, fantasy epics and sci-fi extravaganzas have all benefited from this SFX revolution because, now, filmmakers can show whatever sights they want.

However, there’s been something of a backlash against CGI recently. “Sure”, you might think, “that action scene looks cool, but it’s the end result of a bunch of nerds at the computer.”

Well, if that’s your opinion then you’ll love Mad Max: Fury Road because director George Miller and his team have used CGI as sparingly as possible.

Yes, there are some computer effects but they’ve mainly been used to erase stunt rigs or add a few extra details – like a robotic arm for Charlize Theron.

So, real monster trucks fly through the air, bizarrely modified cars smash into each other and stunt performers cling to fast-moving vehicles.

Fury Road begins somewhere in the Mad Max timeline, set in the post-apocalyptic Australian outback.

Exactly when the events happen isn’t made clear, but once the action starts it’s hard to imagine anyone will care.

Anyway, Max gets captured by the War Boys, members of a tribe that is ruled by the tyrannical Immortan Joe at a stronghold called The Citadel.

Meanwhile, one of Joe’s lieutenants, Imperator Furiosa (Theron), betrays Joe, making a run for it in a war machine with his five wives.

Joe and his gang chase Furiosa, taking Max along to use as a ‘blood bag’ for an unwell War Boy called Nux (Nicholas Hoult). After much mayhem, death and destruction, Max manages to get free and decides to help Furiosa.

And that’s pretty much it for story.

This film isn’t big on plot or character development, but it is big on insane action sequences, spectacular stuntwork and various things that get blown to smithereens.

Tom Hardy may not get many lines as Max (he mostly grunts his way through the movie), but he does get to shoot at motorcyclists as they jump over his speeding truck.

It’s not all non-stop fighting and chasing though.

There are some surprisingly moving quiet moments and plenty of fascinating details to pay attention to.

Joe’s fearsome face mask is brilliantly designed, for example, and Nux’s intricately scarred torso is worth pausing the DVD for.

Just watch it. I can almost guarantee you’ve never seen any movie this mad.

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