Archives for posts with tag: Mad Max

Greed makes people crazy and nothing makes people greedier than a certain precious metal. In “Gold” (2022), Zac Efron finds himself in a version of “Mad Max” with much fewer contraptions. Hobbled but still optimistic, he hitches a ride across this dystopian wasteland, where he and his cohort stumble upon the unexpected. Predictably rapacious hijinks ensue. Zac starts out needing a bath and as the film drags itself into “Revenant” territory, I stayed interested by wondering how much dirtier he’d actually get (you’d be surprised). You probably won’t be surprised by how this painfully tedious exercise in degeneration turns out.

The first half of “Weird Science” (1985) is so good – classic teen comedy from writer/director John Hughes – you forget how badly the second half runs off the rails. Rejects from “Mad Max?” Cruise missiles? Bill Paxton as Jabba the Hutt? Granted, the ship rights itself for a semi-sensible ending that’s a cross between “Risky Business” and “Sixteen Candles” but you’re left wondering what could have been. Anthony Michael Hall and Ilan Mitchell-Smith are classic high school dorks who use early computer technology to build a beautiful woman (Kelly LeBrock) for immoral purposes. She ends up teaching them a valuable lesson.

The interesting thing about “Mad Max” (1980) is that Max is only mad for a few scenes at the end of the film. Talk about a slow buildup. It’s a cheaply made, poorly acted, abysmally edited cross between a police procedural and a sci-fi flick. And don’t get me started about the sound editing. It’s full-bore, Spaghetti Western quality (who knew Australian needed to be dubbed into English?). All that adds up to the perfect B movie, which is why it was such a cult classic, why it spawned a big-budget franchise and why it made Mel Gibson a star.