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Million Dollar Movie


The Road Warrior is one of my favorite action movies. Mad Max is creepy as hell, too. The thing about the first two Mad Max movies is that for all the unrelenting action, and despite the fantastic premise, it’s all rooted in credibility. I always felt that part of Miller’s achievement was to make you believe you are there–with these guys coming after you. They are a comic book–and the third movie went someplace that didn’t really appeal to me)–but realistic in a strange way; that’s what made them so frightening and effective. (The second movie also has some nice comedic touches).

Plus, I liked Max’s dog.

The new one looks pumped up with the action and pyrotechnics. I hope that same sense of urgency and credibility exist.

Mad Mad: Fury Road is supposed to be dope. Think I’ll have to cart my ass to the theater for this one.

Over at Esquire, our pal Scott Raab profiles Charlize Theron:

Her career is pure stardust.

She was a teenage model in Italy, came to New York City at eighteen, and left for Los Angeles when her knees gave out for good; there she was discovered by her first manager, who was in line at the bank where she was trying—loudly and without success—to cash her last New York modeling-job check to keep her room at the Farmer’s Daughter, formerly an L. A. fleabag. But Theron came up hard in a hard country, on a hard continent.

“On the street where I was raised—75 percent of the people who lived on that street are not alive anymore. For no reason. For nothing. Life means nothing. In my formative years, I was in an environment that was filled with turmoil—political turmoil—in a world that was incredibly unsafe. And still is. In the early nineties, we were number one in homicide in the world. In HIV/AIDS, we’re still number one. We were number one in carjacking; I think we’re now number three. It became a place where the value of life—there was no value of life.

“You can’t oversimplify it; it comes from a very real place. It’s sad, because the people are good. They’re good people, and they’re resilient people, more than anywhere else in the world that I’ve ever come across. There’s something about South African flesh—we get up and we move forward, and we sometimes don’t take a moment for a little bit of self-awareness or self-pity. We’re such beasts at having to survive—I have the utmost respect for that, but it’s not the healthiest way to go through life. We’ve become a generation in South Africa that is driven by very valid anger, but the cost is coming at such a high level—and that’s a painful thing to watch. A lot of my emotional drive comes purely from the fact that I was born on that continent, and that I was raised there, and that it was different. I have a very strong relationship with Africa, one that’s built on lots of love and massive pain.”


1 Greg G   ~  May 19, 2015 2:59 pm

I remember the first time I saw Charlize was in 2 Days in the Valley. A cheap ripoff of Pulp Fiction. She was and still is absolutely gorgeous.

She was also amazing in Monster and proved that she could do it without the looks.

I saw the Road Warrior before Mad Max and felt Mad Max was horrible. The voice over dubbing was comical, and it seemed like a cheap movie and I guess it was.

The Road Warrior was intense and I remember thinking, "Why is Joe Strummer in the movie?" That mohawk was great. It was very easy to believe that was where our society was heading. It was a very simple premise and was done in a very beautiful way. Filming it in the desert makes it easy to buy into the last days of civilization and adds to the desolation.

2 Alex Belth   ~  May 19, 2015 3:37 pm

I liked her in the movie with Tommy Lee Jones, "The Valley of Elah."

3 Matt Blankman   ~  May 19, 2015 10:27 pm

I was skeptical after all the near-unanimous praise, but MAD MAX: FURY ROAD is terrific. Much like THE ROAD WARRIOR, I spent long stretches sitting on the edge of my seat. Miller has done a terrific job - it's definitely a 2015 movie, lots of CG enhancement of color, etc, but it's still loaded with practical effects - actual stuntmen and cars flying all over the place. Theron really threw herself into it.

4 Alex Belth   ~  May 20, 2015 7:50 am

3) Did you see it on a regular movie screen or IMAX?

5 Matt Blankman   ~  May 22, 2015 10:30 pm

4) Standard 2D

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