Academy Award Preview — Mad Max: Fury Road
In this post I continue my look at Best Picture nominees with a summer blockbuster that became a surprise Best Picture nominee.
Mad Max: Fury Road
Starring: Charlize Theron, Tom Hardy, and Nicholas Hoult
Directed by: George Miller
Total Nominations: 10
Nominated For: Best Picture, Best Director (Miller), Best Cinematography, Best Editing, Best Costume, Best Hair and Makeup, Best Visual Effects, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, and Best Production Design
About: It's been a long time since Miller visited the world of Mad Max. The third film, "Mad Max: Beyond the Thunderdome," was released in 1985. 30 years later, Miller returned to the world with banner results. Tom Hardy took over the lead role, but this film was essentially one, long, sustained car chase. And for what it is, the film looks really good. I wasn't as taken with "Mad Max: Fury Road." I'm not a huge fan of the series, and while I appreciated the stunts and effects, I wasn't as drawn into the story. Though I do think Theron should have been considered for Best Supporting Actress, as she is great in the film. "Mad Max" has 10 nominations, but none in the acting or writing category. It's a Best Picture nominee, and Miller is a strong contender for Best Director. That makes sense, as these films are mostly his vision. I think "Fury Road" will take home a handful of technical awards, and it has a decent shot at Best Picture. Personally, I think it falls short of the top prize. I also think Miller falls short in the directing category, too. But I wouldn't be surprised to see it win 3-6 technical awards, which is quite an achievement for a summer blockbuster.
Rating: R for intense sequences of violence throughout, and for disturbing images.
Verdict: Two stars out of four.
Where to See It: "Mad Max: Fury Road" is now available on DVD and Blu-Ray, and is also playing on HBO.