This is the type of movie that raises the heart rate, drops your jaw, and pleases your eyeballs for every second that it's on-screen.
The film is gleefully violent. It causes a substantial amount of carnage in a short period of time - and then keeps going. It gives us great physical performances from Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron, the latter of whom might come away from the film with several dozen offers for action roles. Theron steals the movie away from Hardy, giving us one of the great female characters of the year, and perhaps the decade. Actually, all of the hero characters, both male and female, get more than a few moments to shine - it just so happens that most of them are female. That shouldn't really be as noteworthy as it is, but when the damsels in distress turn out to be anything but, it's noticeable and worth pointing out because of how rare it is.
Another rarity is how frequently an action movie can top itself. After the opening portion to Fury Road's chase scene, I wondered how George Miller would top that. I wondered the same thing after the next portion. And so on. It just keeps getting bigger, crazier, and more entertaining. In the end, it's a junky B-grade actioner, but it's one of the best junky B-grade actioners we've ever gotten, or will ever get. Yes, it is that good.
I'm still kind of amazed that Fury Road even exists, particularly in this state. Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome effectively killed the franchise for three decades, and it's not like a fourth chapter was being clamored for by anyone other than die-hard supporters. But now we get Fury Road, with a budget to rival more "sure thing" action franchises, and it paid off wonderfully. This could have been a disaster, but it instead turned into a movie that action fans will be talking about years from now.
The first Mad Max film in 30 years, Mad Max: Fury Road showcases exactly how one can take a simple premise and turn it into an incredibly enjoyable movie. It's one chase scene stretched across two hours of film that never once gets dull, gives us several great characters, and delivers some of the best action scenes of the year. When Kingsman: The Secret Service was released, I expected it to be the best pure action movie of the year. Mad Max: Fury Road may have just topped it. This is incredible filmmaking and a rebirth of the Mad Max brand.
Bottom Line: An instant game-changer, Mad Max: Fury Road is one of the best junky B-movies we've ever gotten.
Recommendation: Action movie fans need to see Mad Max: Fury Road as soon as possible.
If you want more of Matthew "Marter" Parkinson, you can follow him on the Twitter @Martertweet and check out his weekly movie podcast.