7.0/10
161,028
313 user 213 critic

Mad Max (1979)

In a self-destructing world, a vengeful Australian policeman sets out to stop a violent motorcycle gang.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
1,188 ( 242)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
4 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In the post-apocalyptic Australian wasteland, a cynical drifter agrees to help a small, gasoline rich, community escape a band of bandits.

Director: George Miller
Stars: Mel Gibson, Bruce Spence, Michael Preston
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

After being exiled from the most advanced town in post apocalyptic Australia, a drifter travels with a group of abandoned children to rebel against the town's queen.

Directors: George Miller, George Ogilvie
Stars: Mel Gibson, Tina Turner, Bruce Spence
Lethal Weapon (1987)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A veteran policeman, Murtaugh, is partnered with a younger, suicidal officer, Riggs. They both have one thing in common: hating working in pairs. Now they must learn to work with one another to stop a gang of drug smugglers.

Director: Richard Donner
Stars: Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Gary Busey
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Riggs and Murtaugh are on the trail of South African diplomats who are using their immunity to engage in criminal activities.

Director: Richard Donner
Stars: Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Joe Pesci
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A woman rebels against a tyrannical ruler in postapocalyptic Australia in search for her home-land with the help of a group of female prisoners, a psychotic worshipper, and a drifter named Max.

Director: George Miller
Stars: Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Martin Riggs and Roger Murtaugh pursue an arms dealer who is a former LAPD officer.

Director: Richard Donner
Stars: Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Joe Pesci
Ransom (1996)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

When a rich man's son is kidnapped, he cooperates with the police at first but then tries a unique tactic against the criminals.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Mel Gibson, Gary Sinise, Rene Russo
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

With personal crises and age weighing in on them, LAPD officers Riggs and Murtaugh must contend with a deadly Chinese crimelord trying to get his brother out of prison.

Director: Richard Donner
Stars: Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Joe Pesci
Payback I (1999)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Porter is shot by his wife and best friend and is left to die. When he survives he plots revenge.

Director: Brian Helgeland
Stars: Mel Gibson, Gregg Henry, Maria Bello
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Max
...
...
...
Tim Burns ...
...
...
David Bracks ...
Bertrand Cadart ...
David Cameron ...
Robina Chaffey ...
Stephen Clark ...
Mathew Constantine ...
Jerry Day ...
Reg Evans ...
Edit

Storyline

Taking place in a dystopian Australia in the near future, Mad Max tells the story of a highway patrolman cruising the squalid back roads that have become the breeding ground of criminals foraging for gasoline and scraps. When his wife and child meet a grisly end at the hands of a motorcycle gang, Max sets out across the barren wastelands in search of revenge. Written by Cole Matthews

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

When the gangs take over the highway... ...Remember he's on your side. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 March 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mad Max  »

Box Office

Budget:

$200,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In a 2015 interview with The Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith podcast, George Miller said that it was not the intention when the script was written, to set it in a post-apocalyptic world. This was done because they didn't have the money for extras and properly maintained buildings. In order to cover for this production value limitation, the title card was added to the beginning, explaining the story was set after a world war. This also accounts for why there is generally more of an established society in this film, then any of the sequels. See more »

Goofs

Presumably the supercharger was switched off to save fuel, which would work because the engine would stall. The "blower" would not allow the fuel/air mixture to pass into the engine. The only way that the car would move under its own power would be if the compressor housing was fake and there was a carburetor hidden inside the housing. See more »

Quotes

Goose: What a turkey! Hey, fella! You're a turkey!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Revenge: Ashes (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Jessie's Theme
(uncredited)
Written by Nic Gazzana
Performed by Joanne Samuel
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
The Potential of the Australian Film Industry
8 April 2005 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Dr. George Miller's low budget Mad Max franchise impacted on Australian culture and altered the perception of Australia and Australians overseas in a way that no other Australian film had done. The films explores themes such as 'man and the environment', 'fear provoking post-apocalyptic future, family', 'masculinity in crisis', 'good versus evil (Max as an iconic hero), Australian ethos and car culture; themes often featured within Australian films yet presented in a stark and dramatic way. The cinematographic impact is powerful; the human and emotional appeal is timeless.

Australia's barren deserts presented the ideal setting for a post-apocalyptic environment. The film set is more identifiable as Australia as it was filmed around the city of Melbourne. Long deserted roads feature significantly in the film and the cinematographic device of taking long distant shots of Max demonstrates how small he is in the scale of the environment that he is living. It is a relentless, unforgiving environment which demands defeat or survival and marks the characters which play upon its stage.

Just as the physical setting is stark and desolate, the time setting and its associated events create an atmosphere of fear and foreboding which plays on the minds and emotions of contemporary viewers. In this fear provoking post apocalyptic future the few survivors of the nuclear holocaust are in warfare with one another, the rebel bikers and the police.

Good versus evil is a dominant discourse in many film genres and one which embraces the Australian ethos. Max possesses some highly valued "Australian" traits; in particular, those of the underdog, the battler, the hero. External forces beyond his control stop him from "winning" completely. Contrary to the Hollywood hero, the Australian hero is a pawn in the game of others, which explains why Max can never quite "win" in absolute terms. There is little public glorification of success in Australia; heroes are remembered for their style rather than for their achievements. (Venkatasawmy, 1996) Mad Max represented a tradition hero, a hero to whom many diverse cultures are able to relate, as a story of a lone hero is a story that goes back through centuries of storytelling, and as a consequence the film achieved colossal success within Australian and around the world. The Australian cultures and lifestyles shown throughout these films give Australians an understanding of their country in the landscape, the language, and the way we treat people, life and life in exceptional circumstances.

Reference Venkatasawmy, R. (1996), Australian Film in the Reading Room: The Hybridity of Film-making in Australian National Cinema: Formulating a Cinematic Post-Diaspora. Retrieved March 14, 2005, from http://wwwmcc.murdoch.edu.au/ReadingRoom/rama/CHAPT4.htm


49 of 76 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page