- Underrated 4/20/1999 12:00:00 AM by Spaz-11
When I first saw Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, I felt disappointed. It was a letdown from its amazing predecessor. I knew its reputation as an unworthy sequel, but I still realized there was something good about it, something I had never heard from other people's points of view.
It wasn't until some time later when I watched the series a second time that I noticed what it was.
Those who think MMBT is not as exciting as The Road Warrior would be right. But those that think MMBT sucks because it is not as exciting as The Road Warrior would be missing the point. What makes MMBT a worthy sequel is its way of establishing a greater scope of the setting the series takes place in. The dredges of civilization were what set the stage for the series in the original Mad Max. The barren world of desert wastelands and sparse outposts take the idea of a post-apocalyptic world one step further in The Road Warrior. A squalid setting such as Bartertown and an oasis where the tribe of children lived in MMBT once again builds on the elaborate fantasy that makes the series as popular as it is. The final, chilling realization of just what became of civilization in the closing moments of the movie are more than enough explanation as to why the the world the viewer sees in the trilogy is the way it is.
I was too young when I first saw MMBT to understand this. It wouldn't be until I saw it again some time later, with more movie-viewing experience under my belt that I realized that what makes Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome tick is not action set pieces, but a far more subtle approach of atmospheric setting.
- I can't believe how low the imdb rating is on this film! 5/23/2000 12:00:00 AM by zetes
Sure it's probably the least good of the Mad Max films, but it is still entertaining as heck! It is maybe a little more Hollywood (which is a bad thing) than the first two. The music is overbearing at times, and some of the attempts at jokes were very cheap and American blockbusterish.
One of the main faults that has to be sited with this one is that the last thirty minutes or so are basically taken straight from The Road Warrior. The car chase and then the speech about how a stranger helped them establish a new society were taken right out of the 2nd installment.
It still is very creative, and the action has a wonderful momentum. I love the whole society that finds Max in the desert. I loved the recitation of their foundation, and I loved their dialect. I loved Masterblaster. And Tina Turner was actually cool, too. 8/10
- Not as Bad as You Remember 7/17/2009 12:00:00 AM by bradley-trent
This movie was much maligned when it came out in 1985, but that was due to the spectacular qualities of its predecessors, "Mad Max" and "The Road Warrior." Taken out of comparison with the other two, this movie is still solid post-apocalyptic fun, but it's lighter and slightly less violent than "Road Warrior" (as is evidenced by the PG-13 rating.) The actors' performances are perfectly adequate for the action, and the chase scenes bear all the hallmarks of Miller's craftsmanship (which contemporary directors should seriously consider studying and revitalizing.) You just won't see any arrow-riddled bodies slamming into the pavement at 60 mph or watch manned motorcycles sucked under the wheels of a big-rig. This one is about the kids. Think Hook in the wasteland and that starts to approach it.
If you saw this movie in the theaters 25 years ago and walked out hating it, give it another chance. Just don't see "RW" right beforehand. No reason to hobble your experience with unrealistic expectations.
- Gorgeous, delirious post-apocalypse fable 5/20/2000 12:00:00 AM by angelynx-2
Who could not love this movie? It's got more imagination than five average postbomb flicks, incredible visual design, enough alternate societies with enough backstory apiece for three more movies (including an aboriginal clan who look like Peter Pan's Lost Boys and speak a dialect you'll be copying for days after you see it), car chases, amazing costumes, one of the most original death-duel sequences ever, Tina Turner, *and* Mel Gibson! I mean, goddamn, what more do you want? I personally want another movie just set in Bartertown AND a movie that follows what happens to Anna Goanna and her clan, and they don't even have to have Mel Gibson in them - that's how rich I think the imaginative depth of this movie is. I like it more every time I see it. Genuinely something special.
- Too unconvincing, excessive and messy to really be enjoyable or engaging 4/19/2005 12:00:00 AM by bob the moo
When he is attacked and robbed of his animals, Max Rockatansky follows his attackers to Bartertown ? a den of deceit and violence that is made possible thanks to the methane power source from pigs kept underground. Bartertown may be ruled above ground by Aunty Entity but the real owner is Master Blaster ? a team of two men who control the power supply. In exchange for his goods, Aunty offers Max a deal where he will challenge Blaster to a fight in the town's duelling arena and kill him ?thus removing the muscle and putting Master under Aunty's control. Max accepts, although he rightly suspects that he will be the next to be betrayed.
At least one reviewer on this site has said that the reason people dislike this film is because it is about the start of a new world whereas the other two Mad Max films were about the end of the world as we know it. Sadly I believe he is mistaken because I think the reason people dislike this film is because it is messy, excessive, unconvincing (even within the apocalyptic situation it makes no sense) and just isn't really any good. The plot swings between an excessive violent society at the start, to a child colony in the middle to a big noisy chase scene right at the end. In terms of the narrative that connects this all, don't worry about that because it doesn't really work and just feels very episodic throughout ? making it messy and uninteresting. It is unconvincing and, although I accept that the entire film is fantasy, you gotta wonder where all the excesses and such came from and how we were supposed to buy into it; hell, a fuel blockade by lorry drivers brought the UK to its knees a few years ago but yet we're suppose to believe this? The apocalyptic here lacks imagination and just feels like the sort of thing that exists in an art director's mind rather than something that convinces.
The episodic feel isn't helped by the rambling, pointless dialogue associated with the children ? it tries to have a mysticism that nothing else in the film has worked to deserve; however it could be helped by developing Max better. If he was a strong lynch pin holding all these bits and pieces together then it would matter less but he isn't ? he is just a grunting rock that doesn't really have a character to speak of and I had little or no interest in him at all ? even when he becomes "caring and sharing" I didn't care because I had had nothing to work with up till that point. Turner is not terrible but she doesn't really act and just sort of swans around in an unconvincing manner. In that regard she is like the majority of the cast, who don't really give the performances ? whether it e the clunky child actors or the grunting brutes that are just stunt fodder. The stunts are OK and the final chase provides some distraction but without really caring about the plot or the characters, I found it hard to get into any action.
Overall a disappointing film whose core failing is the lack of a convincing new world. The film feels episodic and lacks anything to hold it together. Throwing a lot of cars around at the end does provide some distraction but by then it was too late for me and the whole thing was clunky, pointless and surprisingly uninteresting.