Like its eponymous wandering haunted hero, hooked up intravenously to Warboy Nux, Mad Max:Fury Road has provided a shot in the arm and jolt to the gonads of action cinema. And not just action – the spectacle, verve, colour and pared down themes recalling and improving on so much of the 100 + years of cinematic technique. Off the top of my head: the spectacle of D.W.Griffith’s Intolerance as Immortan Joe lords it over the gasping, supplicant hordes of the cruel Citadel; Buster Keaton’s The General, for the energy and imagination of the vehicular chases; and the lush, breathtaking cinematography of Apocalypse Now, coloured flares popping over the antithesis of received wisdom for dystopian landscapes, George Miller and his team cranking up the colour to show the harsh beauty of the wasteland spread before our heroes escape. Apocalypse WOW.
Here, director George Miller sits down with VICE to discuss the long road in getting the film made; casting Tom Hardy as Max; whether or not it’s a feminist action flick (Vagina Monologues author / activist Eve Ensler workshopped with the five “wives”, making a break for freedom with kick-ass heroine Furiosa (Charlize Theron), looking for a shot at redemption); bringing back The Toecutter, actor Hugh Keays Byrne, in another iconic bad guy role as Immortan Joe; creating those incredible stunts; and much more. 17 years in the making, Mad Max: Fury Road was well worth the wait.