It is anarchy we love to watch safely in the seat of the movie theatre chair while a car -- fashioned with giant speakers for an embedded coked-up-looking rocker who uses the contraption of a vehicle/amplifier system (and his own twin flame thrower guitar) to ward of attackers -- chases after our hero, wielding equally deadly, if less musical, weapons. What is it about this desperate battle for survival in a dystopian future of conspicuous oil consumption and maddening scenes of human nature left unchecked by the morality of a modern justice system that keeps us glued to our seats?
This article will discuss how Mad Max -- as portrayed in the four-film franchise -- destroys the ideal of anarchy bliss -- proving once and for all that for all you anarchists out there, you don't have much to which you can look forward besides showdowns with evil warlords and crazed sadists on motorcycles.
1. You can do anything in anarchy, so let's have a party -- So, the world has ended and you can do anything you want and this means -- in such a place -- everything would be about having fun. But in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, "fun" consists of gladiator style fights to the death featuring no other than the town disabled man whose great size puts him at an advantage, but whose exploitation by the town enrages Max -- who refuses to kill him -- to seek revenge.
2. If anarchy is survival of the fittest, then I will survive -- No matter how hard you think you are, even if you're our man Max himself, you can never predict that the fancy blower you installed on your V8 engine will be beaten by the brute force of a nitrous oxide system, which, as shown, can make a tin can with chrome roadster exhausts outrun a Ford Falcon XB GT any day.
3. If I leave everyone else alone, they'll leave me alone -- In this scene from the original 1979 film, an innocent couple just "wanting to be left alone" drive past a motorcycle gang in full anarchy mode, ready to cause mayhem for mayhem's sake. Usually at these scenes, I start to wonder if the expense of gasoline is worth an effort that almost surely will get at least one member of your corrupt cohort blown up, and for what? To terrorise some innocent couple? Lesson learned -- never be the "innocent couple" in anarchy.
4. I will have whatever woman I choose -- Don't count on it. Especially in Mad Max: Fury Road, you will have your proverbials shot off if you try something uncouth with the wrong woman, so be a gentleman or risk being maimed or killed. Charlize Theron as the Imperator Furiosa is not to be pushed around -- by anyone -- and it is only with her permission that Max can be our hero du jour. Watch the interview below with Charlize, who redefines the role of the femme fatale.
5. I will be a bully and get away with it -- A bit different than No. 2 above in the sense that the bullies are the bad guys in all four Mad Max films because they don't just survive, they needlessly torture large populations, as if they're lessons on running a civilization based on the life and times of North Korea's Kim Jong-un. And they are all placing their civilization at risk by egregiously engaging our hero. The road chase scenes, for which the Mad Max movie franchise is famous, shows how much a bully will go through to prove a point spending any and all resources to mount an attack on any show of resistance against the bully order, or to recover an oil tanker to fuel the next pointless rampage. The results are always the same.
If you decide to see Mad Max: Fury Road, and you haven't seen the previous three films, you will now be prepared for what is to come, only amplified by quite a few decibels...literally speaking.
[Image courtesy of Warner Bros./Time Warner Inc.]