thedeadparrot (thedeadparrot) wrote,

Mad Max: Fury Road

I finally got to see it after hearing a lot about it (perhaps too much about it). Overall, I enjoyed it a lot. The worldbuilding is impressive. The action is tense. The emotional stakes are well drawn. It feels deeply fearless, in ways that blockbuster movies rarely are these days. There are a lot of women involved! Of all different types!

But I guess my expectations weren't set in the right place, because I'm not as impressed by it as other people are.

- The most interesting thing about Fury Road, imo, is that it feels birthed from one man -- one person's -- id. I don't know how the other Mad Max movies compare on that front, but it's clear that the movie is birthed from a love of a particular kind of aesthetic. Like, a total and complete, no-holds-barred kind of love. One of the people at work who loved the movie talked about how detailed the movie is, and I don't think that detail exists without a certain type of gleeful fanboyism to go with it.

- This most obvious in the way that the movie loves the grotesque. It pretty much revels in the creepy pale skin of the War Boys and the deformities of many of the characters (usually the badguys). It's so unapologetic about this that it makes blockbusters like Avengers look sterile and pale by comparison. On the other hand, a lot of times, that grotesqueness sort of ends up being a substitute for 'omg this is a bad guy'. Sigh.

- That being said, the movie feels a little bit like reading Captive Prince or your favorite tropey fanfic. It knows that it's a product of an id and does its best to engage with its own id in a constructive and thoughtful way while still revelling in itself.

- All the same, I think Anita Sarkeesian is reacting to that when she says that the movie doesn't feel feminist. Sure, all the women get to be active and badass, but there's something deeply uncomfortable about the wives being such a huge focal point in the movie. They have agency, but then there's the bigger women being strapped down and pumped of their breastmilk. There's the old woman who was left behind when the other wives left. So many women in this movie, and the ones the movie chooses to save are the pretty, nubile ones who are not wearing much in the way of clothes. That's directly out of some straight guy's id, no matter how much the movie tries to work its way through and around it.

- The worldbuilding of the Citadel is pretty great. The structures of power that keep everyone dependent on Immortan Joe are drawn so quickly and efficiently. It's a delight to see glimpses of it at the beginning. How all these pieces fit together. That's the kind of thing I love most about post-apocalyptic fiction, examining the human social structures that emerge out of that kind of shakeup.

- The Vulvani were so disappointing by comparison. I dunno. Next to the intricacies of the Citadel, they're just sort of there and around. I guess. And they have some specific terminology, sort of. I just wanted to know more about them and how they work and how they survive.

- Furiosa was as amazeballs as promised. I loved every bit of her story and I'm almost a little sad that with that ending she probably won't be a huge part of the next Mad Max movies. On the other hand, I'm looking forward to whatever gonzoid thing George Miller has in store for us.

On a completely unrelated note, I am not sure how I feel about continuing to watch Game of Thrones, but everything about this fake Game of Thrones musical (written by Coldplay) is hilarious:

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Tags: movies

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