Furiosa : A Mad Max Saga – A breathless action thriller

Growing up in a secret lush oasis a young Furiosa mistakenly takes on a band of marauders who have found their home and taken her horse for meat, leading to her being kidnapped. The kidnappers are chased across the wasteland by her mother who briefly succeeds in getting her back only to realise they were not going to outrun the bikers. Furiosa’s mother hands her a seed, a symbol from their home so that she can forever remember where she came from. After seeing her mother brutally taken from her Furiosa is forcibly adopted by the madman responsible Dr Dementus (Chris Hemsworth). It is in these cruel wasteland moments that Furiosa’s rage and determination is born, setting her on a path of revenge against those that have taken everything from her. 

It has been nine years since the release of Mad Max: Fury Road and while many regard it as one of the best action movies ever made, I couldn’t stand it. Mainly due to how Max was portrayed by Tom Hardy but there was one shining light to rise from the wasteland and that was the character Furiosa played originally by Charlize Theron in what is arguably one of her better roles.

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga is an origin story for the titular character, taking place over approximately a decade of her young life from the time she is taken by Dementus, through her unceremonious use as a bargaining chip with Immortan Joe (Lachy Hulme) the masked warlord who controls a towering rock formation known as The Citadel, until she grows up to begin her road to redemption and we finally get to see Anya Taylor-Joy step into Furiosa’s shoes. 

Adult Furiosa takes on the role of a road warrior in training. Under the watchful eyes of her mentor, Jack (Tom Burke), it is their job to transport fuel and food supplies between the wasteland’s three main population centres, The Citadel, Gas Town and The Bullet Farm.  Slowly collecting provisions so that she can leave The Citadel and make the long journey back to her birthplace. 

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga takes all the heart-stopping action we have come to expect from a George Miller epic and ramps it to 11. A massive set piece is followed by a massive set piece with all manner of mechanical mayhem unfolding on screen for all to see. Moments of intensity are offset by political negotiations between the rival warlords from each of the three centres that can sometimes feel a little lopsided and pedestrian yet provide a welcomed respite and moments to catch your breath. 

Furiosa is perfectly cast, with Anya Taylor-Joy stealing each scene she is in. After waiting over an hour to see her in the role it is quickly made apparent that she was the right choice. The role’s physical demands aside, Taylor-Joy exudes a cool calm and intensity that gives Furiosa a certain depth and youthfulness that differ from Theron’s performance but complement it well.  I am convinced that someone let Chris Hemsworth off the chain for his role of Dr Dementus and he went all in. Part Roman general, part meth-running biker, he doesn’t hold back in giving us a villain we love to hate while showing us that in the wasteland, even the heartless, well, have no hearts and easily get drunk on power. 

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga has brought back the idea of the action blockbuster that is all about big car chases, bigger explosions and a thumping soundtrack that begs you to see it on the big screen. While a shallow story in part that feels very familiar, it is easy to look past for its sheer entertainment value. Initially, I did not want to see this movie and dive back into the post-apocalyptic world, but I will happily watch Furiosa again. George Miller has proven again that he can build a world from the ruins of a society full of engaging, weird and wonderful characters. 

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga is out now at cinemas everywhere.   

Furiosa : A Mad Max Saga – A breathless action thriller

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