In my journey to get back on the Fury Road, I’m working my way through the Mad Max films. Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, which has a 7.6 out of 10 on IMDb and 98% on Rotten Tomatoes, was the film I was most looking forward to watching out of the originals. I’ve heard good things about this film, and after watching I can definitely see why.
Max (Mel Gibson) with the help of a crazy gyro captain discovers a small, gasoline rich city that is under siege by bandits led by The Humungous. Max arranges a deal to get gasoline for his Interceptor, but things don’t quite go as planned. Max is faced with a decision that will make or break the city’s inhabitant’s chances of survival as the film picks up. The movie has the frantic, fast-paced action scenes and amazing stunts that the first film offered, but increased a bit.
This film stands out over the original as the world feels more post-apocalyptic. The costumes are the ones that I connect to the franchise and really help to tell the story of the world Max and company are a part of. The progression of the decent from humanity is clear from film to film. By the time we get to Fury Road, which I’m still not clear if its reboot or sequel or some combination, the world is functional but divided by those in control of the resources. The Road Warrior definitely builds this universe and I look forward to seeing how it changes in Beyond Thunder Dome even despite the negative things I’ve heard of that film.
This film again makes me a fan of Mel Gibson as an action hero. Even when he is more anti-hero than hero, he is a character that I route for. I want to see how he will get out of the situation he has put himself in. The giant Humungus is a great villain in the film, but he does end up feeling a bit anti-climactic in the end. Wez, the red-mohawked biker, is more of Max’s direct antagonist. He has an issue with Max from the beginning of the film and is much more visceral of a character than Humungus. The character that steals the hearts of the audience members has to be Dog, who is an awesome K-9 companion of Max that does much to help Max survive.
I had a lot going on for work this evening, but I was able to fit the movie into my schedule. A beautiful aspect of this film is the under two hour runtime keeping it short and sweet, but not sacrificing any of the good elements. I think I like Fury Road better, but I feel this one may have beat it in overall story. Then again, I’ll be watching Fury Road soon and I can make a better comparison then. Either way, George Miller is edging his way up my list of favorite directors. However, I know he directed some stinkers along the way, but when he is on he is amazing.
If you’re like me and hadn’t taken the time to check out The Road Warrior then it’s time to get in the car and put the pedal to the metal. The adrenaline that this movie will inspire easily justifies skipping the gym for a day as you’ll easily get your cardio in for the day. I give Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior 7 out of 10 metallic boomerangs.