Andrew Ducker (andrewducker) wrote,
Andrew Ducker
andrewducker

Mad Max: Fury Road: Some Thoughts

I liked it. It was not the most amazing thing I'd ever seen, and I do think I'd have liked it a little more if I hadn't seen the trailer about six times, but I still thought it was solidly good.

The thing it reminded me of the most was an old-school series from the comic compendium 2000AD. It had that kind of simple storytelling, with decent-but-simple dialogue, violent-but-not-upsetting action, and plots that hint at a deeper world without stopping to infodump, along with gorgeous visual shots that frame both the action and the characters and tie the narrative together. The overall plot of "Character from previous books bumps into a new adventure, learns a few things, and helps a few people out." could have come from something like Slaine really easily.

I was completely unsurprised to discover that Brendan McCarthy was heavily involved.

I was intrigued by the discussions ahead of time about the purported feminism of the movie, and by various people's reactions to it. And was fascinated that the end result isn't what many people might think of as feminist, because they'd then be imagining something in which women are superior to men, or men are explicilty blamed for the terrible state of the world.

What we have, instead, is something where the awful lives of many women in that world is made clear, and women are equally major characters as the men. Both of which are, after all, strongly feminist in that they (a) critique the world and (b) have quasi-equal representation. It's the kind of feminism which many anti-feminists almost deny exists, so focussed are they on the idea that feminists don't want equality, they want to put men down. So I can understand why some people failed to spot that the film is feminist* purely in that it puts a bunch of women into a plot, working with men in order to improve their situation, but given the state of representation of women in movies just doing that is clearly enough to piss off a lot of deeply unpleasant people.

In any case - gorgeous, well written, fun, and basically two hours of car chases and explosions. Recommended.

*It's like failing to spot that Lord Of The Rings is pro-royalist. It's so ingrained in people, fantasy plot-wise, that The True King can fix things by accepting his role, that they fail to spot how barkingly odd that kind of thinking is in the real world. Very few people argue that what we _really_ need to do in order to bring happiness to the UK is for Charles to get a grip, grab the reigns of power, and apply his natural kingly instincts to our once bounteous land.



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