Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) Poster

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2/10
The weakest Mad Max film I ever saw
ivo-cobra812 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
*SPOILERS*

The third movie in the trilogy Mad Max franchise and the weakest Mad Max film I ever saw. This movie is stupid! I never understood why this movie is so bad. Even the first Mad Max is better than Beyond Thunderdome. Why such a praise for this film? The only good thing in this film is Mel Gibson and Tina Turner and her songs but that's it. The rest of the film everything sucks so bad in here and it is rated PG-13 and everything in this film is just wrong. Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior is awesome and the best of the trilogy, this film just isn't. But it is a real let down and a true disappointment for a fan like me. Max without his car V8 is nothing but a peace of low life.

I know a lot of people love this film and I respect that some people even think this is better then the original Mad Max, Really? What is so good about this movie? Huh. This movie is boring, lees violent it is PG-13 movie and Mel Gibson is at worst at his performance. This movie was a failure to me.

Every time I watch it I just feel miserable oh and Mad Max the original film is way better flick then this one it really is.

I apologize to all fans but in my opinion not yours this movie is the weakest one in the Mad Max franchise and if they would focus more on Bardertown and Thunderdome and got rid of the kids and make this movie rated R this could have been a great movie but right now in my opinion its a "bad" movie.

This movie felt too rushed and it felt it just wasn't right.

And also why this film is in the sand why the are no roads here? Why this is not a wasteland? Gosh I hate this film sue me! I also reviewed 2 years ago the first three Mad Max films and I didn't want to disrespect Mad Max franchise and I didn't want to get the hate on here.

Mostly it was George Miller's fault when his friend and Producer Byron Kennedy died in a helicopter crash. He didn't care he made it less violent less apocalyptic and less action I really don't understand why people love this movie but the first one they don't? I don't know.

We never found out more about Max or his fate the movie does not tell us anything.

Shame on you, George this movie destroyed the Mad Max trilogy I am glad that Mad Max: Fury Road come out 20 years later and yes it is MILES way better action film then this one and I have reviewed all of them.

Also I like Mel Gibson as a actor I always did I never said I hate him he is a really good actor and the Mad Max Trilogy alongside with Lethal Weapon franchise those movies made him in to a star that he is today so yea.

Sadly the film is failure to me just my opinion.

Tina Turner wasn't that terrible because she made two songs for this film and she performed her self. Songs: One of the Living and We Don't Need Another Hero a great songs and I love to listening them.

Tina Turner also at acting isn't that terrible.

But this film is horrendous awful and it sucks I hate those kids.

This Mad Max has no weapons by him self, he has no car and Max doesn't kill anybody in this film.

It feels to me like this Max is a pussy and he is afraid to kill people.

I also have this movie on Blu-ray disc in my collection even tough is a boring stupid awful time waster I still have it in my video collection.

I don't like this film I don't. Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior is my number action film in this franchise which is the best one, second best one to me is Mad Max: Fury Road I love those two films to death they are great films. Mad Max the first one is a good action film but it has problems but is at least better action film then Thunderdome that is my opinion.

2/10
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Half and half
Mike-7542 June 1999
The first half of this film -- the part with Bartertown, Thunderdome, etc -- is brilliant, not just a repeat of THE ROAD WARRIOR but a totally new concept, thoroughly fleshed out. The second half, with the lost children, isn't as good -- and, more to the point, doesn't quite mesh with the first half, despite Miller's attempts to tie it all together at the end. Still, it's well above average in a genre that has increasingly come to believe (wrongly) that special effects are more important than plot and character.
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Underrated
Spaz-1120 April 1999
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.
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8/10
I can't believe how low the imdb rating is on this film!
zetes23 May 2000
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
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7/10
Not as Bad as You Remember
bradley-trent17 July 2009
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.
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7/10
Gorgeous, delirious post-apocalypse fable
angelynx-220 May 2000
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.
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What the Hell?
darkgodmobutu22 March 2001
What the hell happened with this one? I understand that it's the third entry into an otherwise flawless series and that George Miller didn't put his whole heart into it (suffering the loss of longtime friend and producer Byron Kennedy), and that it had two directors, but still...what the hell? This movie starts out top-notch, and it seems like it's going to be a superb follow up to the brilliant Road Warrior, and then about halfway through it turns into friggin' Peter Pan meets Lord of the Flies! Mel Gibson was great in this film, and working as hard as he could to make it work. Tina Turner was adequate, but not spectacular. I understand the film maker's intentions to try and take the series into a completely different direction and all, but why would you pick this direction? And what was up with that Gyro Captain guy from Road Warrior being cast as a similar character? Why not just bring his character back? I don't know, maybe it was the same character, I really wasn't awake for most of this film. If you want to catch a top-notch Mad Max film pick up either the first or second, both are far superior to this one.

I give this one * * 1/2 out of * * * * *

Oh yeah, and what's up with that annoying Ironbar guy not dying? He gets hit by a train, thrown off a bridge, and has his car destroyed with him in it, and yet he still doesn't die!
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Too unconvincing, excessive and messy to really be enjoyable or engaging
bob the moo19 April 2005
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.
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A misunderstood and often unfairly condemned entry in the Mad Max series
John M Upton28 August 2003
Warning: Spoilers
A misunderstood and often unfairly condemned entry in the Mad Max series

CAUTION! SPOILERS AHEAD!

In the beginning was the era of the White Line nightmare, the collapse of civilisation as a few struggled to keep law and order against the rising tide of anarchy. That was Mad Max the original movie.

Then came Mad Max 2 (The Road Warrior) and the story moved on, the struggle to survive after the collapse that had begun in the era of the first film.

Beyond Thunderdome attempts to bring the saga full circle as some resemblance of civilisation and organisation begins to rise from the ashes and the cities become populated once again, hopefully setting the scene for the battles and action in the forthcoming Fury Road.

Thunderdome does suffer from a slight 'Hollywoodisation' and many will recognise a few elements straight out of the action movie handbook probably at the insistence of the studio.

However the spirit of Mad Max is still there, the struggle to survive against the odds in the ever changing world. Many have bemoaned the lack of decent car chases in the same way as the previous two films, which is understandable, however it must be remembered that this is fifteen years after the fall of civilisation and oil is non-existent practically.

A chase between a train (we will skip over the nicely maintained track myster!) and various bespoke vehicles is a bit of a rehash of the excellent chase from Road Warrior but fills the bill. It does appear a little stilted and short though as though there was meant to be more of it but we will probably never know.

Annoyingly Brian May who did the amazing soundtrack for the first two Max films was passed over here in favour of Maurice Jarre (Studio insistence?) However he still manages a good soundtrack here (sadly missing several key sections on the CD of the music). Tina Turner does the contractual obligation of most films post 1985 by providing opening and closing songs.

Overall the performances are good as usual from Mel Gibson as our slightly reluctant hero. Tina Turner lords it up for all she can get as Auntie, the leader of Bartertown with the usual supporting cast of henchmen and loonies in weird outfits driving even weirder machines!

Of the supporting characters, Helen Buday was excellent as the young warrior princess Savannah Nix which makes it a shame she has not done more film work, Robert Grubb as Pigkiller was a character I felt needed more explanation and development whilst Bruce Spence is back as a similar (although apparently different!) character to his Gyrocaptain from The Road Warrior.

Nothing however compares with the quite simply stunning closing sequence with the ruins of Sydney (Harbour Bridge, Opera House, etc) that was achieved with amazing accuracy using real models - who needs CGI?

This and the other Mad Max films do deserve decent DVD releases though with load of extras, the full soundtrack and deleted scenes I feel if they are to bring any justice to them. Hopefully with the new Fury Road on the way, someone at Warner Bros DVD Dept might take the hint?

So with Savannah closing with her 'tell' we see Max set off into the wasteland sunset hopefully to return in Mad Max 4 - Fury Road.
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5/10
"Mad" Max + P.G.-13 = Tame and lame movie.
Joseph P. Ulibas4 June 2004
Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) was a travesty. Even though it takes place in an even bleaker future, the filmmakers decided to line their pockets even further by making this one "family friendly (i.e. P.G.-13). What made the other films gritty and nihilistic is missing from this film. Only a few spots but other than that it's just other one of those sequels that morphed into a more mainstream movie (i.e Robocop 3). Needless to say I was very disappointed because when I was much younger I was a huge Mad Max mark.

The story takes place years after the events that transpired in part two. Max is content with his life out in the wastelands. But one day, the fates would appear. Someone has robbed him of his caravan and his old souped up vehicle (sadly no longer in running condition). When he recovers he finds that all roads lead to one of the last vestiges of civilization, an arm pit called "Bartertown". Whilst in "Bartertown" Max finds the person who cold cocked him but his unable to do anything about it. So, after a brief scuffle with the local authorities Max is taken to meet the "mayor" of "Bartertown" Aunt Enity (Tina Turner). After a brief display of his talents, Enity and Max strike a deal....

Like the other films, the world of Pro Wrestling has taken several themes and characters from this movie (i.e. The Thunderdome and The Master Blasters, etc..). Many knock-offs and wannabes have spawn off of this one as well. It even started up a sub-genre, children living in a post-apocalyptic society films. Not a bad film but die-hards of the first two will be disappointed.

C+
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3/10
Max Rockatansky and the Goonie feral gang.
Spikeopath4 March 2008
Even allowing for my unabashed love of the first two films in the franchise, and sweeping away any sort of biased leanings I might of had for the character of Max, I just can't bring myself to rate at average this cartoonery waste of space that so nearly soils what had gone before it.

Gone is the rugged nasty streak that brought feeling to the character Mad Max Rockatansky, gone is the impacting feeling of desolation in an apocalyptic world, and more crucially, gone is director George Miller's passion for the franchise. The dreadful score matches the cartoon heart of the film, it seems that the makers didn't really know what to do with the amount of cash given to make this third {and thankfully last} instalment. Sure the stunts are spot on {to be expected by now}, and of course Miller manages to paint a barren desert landscape by purely lifting from what he has done before. Yet he clearly struggled for fresh ideas with the action since The Road Warrior's crowning glory of the Petrol Tanker pursuit is replicated here, only he uses a train instead!!.

It's just a very poor show that may have seemed like an ambitious turn of events back in the mid 1980s; but when viewing the three films together now, Thunderdome just comes across as a director losing his edgy approach whilst sadly getting caught between the mix of comedy and fantasy action. And the truth is that neither of those genre slants would have worked singularly, in the context of this series, anyway. I give the film 3/10 purely for one real good Thunderdome fight sequence, while the stunt men here deserve some credit at the very least. But this is the third time I have tried to like this film, and as glutton for punishment as I undoubtedly am, I wont be trying again, ever.
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1/10
Mad Max?! Peter Pan more like.
liamolf7 October 2005
I am going to keep this review of this film short and to the point. This film was a mess. Which is a shame because it had all of the makings of a good Mad Max film... For the first 5 seconds.

We start off with Gibson's character Max in this latest incarnation of the trilogy. He plays a broken nomad, the type of person to which he once scoffed at in his days in the Main Force Patrol (Mad Max - 1979). His family and his best friend are brutalised by gang members of a nomad biker clan, making good of turning the highways of Australia into a living hell. All of which is portrayed onto film in a very violent fashion.

We progress onto Mad Max 2, which sees our character roaming the 'wastelands' of Australia. These desolate and baron lands become Max's home, as he has nothing left for him in civilisation. He comes across a populated Oil refinery, which is being marauded by a viscous army of scavengers, pillagers and murderers. He brings back a half dead member of the small tribe of people within the grounds of the fortified Refinery and cuts a deal with them, a truck cab for as much Fuel as he can carry. The film progresses and again Mad Max saves the day albeit being left alone again.

Then this brings us on to Mad Max 3, if you can even call it Mad Max. This could have been a good film, had they have named it 'Peter Pan and the Quest for Tomorrow-morrow Land.' This film is completely out of sync with it's predecessors. In comparison, this is a tame and softened film of a franchise to which violence is its main selling point. Mad Max with children humming all of the time is not only slightly cringe inducing to watch, but it is not what Max is about. They call him 'Mad' Max for a reason, in this, he is more like a stressed out Babysitter. The most violence you are likely to see is Blaster being shot with a Speer, and Max knocking Savannah Nix out with a single punch, as well as a tribes-man of Bartertown being knocked out with a frying pan a couple of times. That's it. No people being impaled with spears, no kneecaps being shot out, nothing. Even Aunty Entity escapes Max's wrath, compared to her predeceasing king-pins in previous films being blown up, ran over, and blown up again.

This film is nothing more than a joke to a brilliant franchise, and not a particularly funny one at that. If I were you, I would just watch the first two films and call it quits there. Pretend that Max is still wandering the Wastelands, helping tribes-people out when they are needy, etc, etc. Although I cannot help but think that this way of thinking is only going to be made harder with a fourth member to the franchise with the pipeline. Lets hope that the directors have learnt from their mistakes made in this dog.

1/10. There nothing for you here...
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1/10
One of the Worst Sequels I Have Ever Seen...
vze3vhtf10 May 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Possible Spoilers:

In 1979, the first Mad Max came out (Although the story goes it was actually filmed in 1977, as Director George Miller's Film School Project).

At any rate, it was a low-budget film that achieved a cult status.

Then came 1981's MM2: TRW. One of my all-time favorite movies, largely because Miller combines a tortured, minimalist performance by Gibson, offset by almost cartoon-like violence, comic relief by other characters, along with some of the best cinematography in any 1980's film, all so brilliantly, that the result is much greater than the sum of its parts.

In addition, Brian May's brooding operatic score was so good, & contributed so much to the overall feel of the film, that I have pondered over the years that it must have influenced Danny Elfman's soundtrack to Tim Burton's 1989 ' Batman '.

At any rate, it was a great movie.

But Miller could not just quit while he was ahead-He had to go for the ' Hat-Trick '.

The result being 1985's MM: BT: A film that starts with Gibson,' The Road Warrior ', looking more like ' Lawrence of Arabia ' as he trades his Bad-Ass Black Ford Falcon Interceptor for-A covered wagon pulled by Camels???

-WTF???

A film that trades May's score for pop tunes by Tina Turner.

-WTF???

A film that trades SOME plot in TRW, for NO coherent plot at all!

-WTF???

A film that is so absurdly campy, that Turner herself looks like she is trying to be a drag queen!

-WTF???

A film where NONE of the action makes any sense, least of all the ending.

-WTF???

So if this trilogy were a Three-Course Meal, then MM would be the appetizer, TRW would be the Filet Mignon Entree, and BT would be Miller's big steaming dump in a dessert dish.

Shame on you, George.

M
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Watch and you will agree with the soundtrack song of Mad Max 3 - 'We don't need another hero.'
Old Joe2 August 2003
Mad Max 3 has shown me that this Australian film franchise is continuing to be big and successful. Part way through watching this movie, I felt that Mel Gibson was born to play the role of Mad Max, as he suits the character that was created. I was thinking that this film might have had a very 'Hollywood' feel to it. But to my surprise, I was glad to see and hear a very Australian flavour continuing, which has accompanied all the Mad Max movies to date.

Two men enter. One man leaves. That is the law in Bartertown's Thunderdome arena. But lawmaker Aunty Entity will soon add another: Do not get Max mad! Max is back as the hero who takes on the barbarians of the post-nuclear future - and this time becomes the savior of a tribe of lost children. However, the power-mad Aunty Entity, a dominatrix, is determined to use Max to tighten her stranglehold on Bartertown.

What was lacking in the second of the Mad Max movies was its script, which seemed to be underdeveloped, so I was hoping that the 'Beyond Thunderdome' would be better. Thankfully it was, as there was a lot more dialogue, some intriguing characters, and an even better story, which contained a lot of entertaining elements. I especially like the location of Bartertown, as it still had an 'Australian feel' to it, the idea of the Thunderdome was well explained and shown through the story. Then to have Max, be the protector of all these children made the story just that much better. MM3 was written once again by George Miller and Terry Hayes.

But George Miller also did so much more. He directed the third movie, giving it all the necessary touches that have made Mad Max, the movies they are today. Helping Miller in the director's chair is another George, director George Ogilvie. Having two directors I think only enhances the movie all the more. I like the way we see the famous 'Thunderdome' fighting scene, as Miller and Ogilvie focused very much on that event and the many elements within it. I also like the grand view of the open desert that we see numerous times through out the film, as both directors certainly wanted us to see that the conditions surrounding Bartertown were pretty harsh to both humans and animals. Credit for this section of the movie has to also go to the cinematographer, Dean Semler, who shot some great camera angles of the deserts.

MM3 also had some fine performers. Mad Max (Mel Gibson) shows that he is still a force to be reckoned with. His introduction to Aunty Entity (Tina Turner) was highly entertaining, as Max takes an impossible situation to show that he is a person not to be taken lightly. Max, for part of this movie, has long hair, which I believe gives Max an even more silent, heroic, darker edge to his character. However I was not a big fan of Tina Turner's performance in the film, as she did not seem at all in her place as an actress, but the look of her character was effective. Tina sings the song 'We don't need another hero' for the movie's soundtrack.

I also liked the actors with minor roles in the film. Max is told to separate Master-blaster, who is two identities. There is the very small and intelligent Master (Angelo Rossitto), and the very muscular Blaster (Paul Larsson), who Max has the huge encounter with in the Thunderdome. There was also a very Australian feel to this cast. Pigkiller (Robert Grubb) was a peculiar character that I immediately liked. He genuinely wants to help Max's cause in any way he can. Of the nastier looking guys, you have Ironbar (Angry Anderson), who might not have much to say, but has many lives in the film. In fact, many incidents with him are humorous and breathtaking as well. Back in MM3 is Jedediah (Bruce Spence), who now has a son, Jedediah Jnr. (Adam Cockburn). Max and Jedediah have a very clear understanding, which continues here. Another major component to the film is the use of pigs. I will not say why they are used here, just that I liked their presence every time they were onscreen.

There are some amazing scenes attached to MM3. I have to agree that the film contains one the best movie fight scenes ever, as Max and gladiatorial Blaster face off with maces, chainsaws and anything not nailed down inside Thunderdome. It is truly an exhilarating scene to see playing out, (although I cringed when I saw Max drop-start the chainsaw). However the customary car chase scene, which MM is famous for, was not as great here, as in the previous two movies. But it did have the fun sequence showing Ironbar barely escaping with his life many times. I enjoyed the lead up scenes to the car chase, as they had a lot of action and involvement of many people from the cast.

While, I like the characters we see in this movie, I do not believe they are as well developed as the people created for the first movie, as they were a lot easier to get to know, love and understand. I guess the big question after this movie is, 'which Mad Max is better, one or three?' I am still a bigger fan of the original, as it is a great film, showing that a small budget filmmaking can be very successful. That does not mean I am not a fan of this film, because I am. 'Beyond Thunderdome' had such a fine conclusion, that perhaps they should have left the 'status quo'. But hearing that a 4th film in the series is being made as we speak, says to me, that Mel Gibson, George Miller and his talented crew have more in store for Mad Max fans. I cannot wait!

CMRS gives 'Mad Max - Beyond Thunderdome': 3.5 (Good - Very Good Film)
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1/10
Redefines "Suck"
rosanna_rosannadanna17 August 2006
Every time I've seen this movie I get the same impression: some parts of it are so amazingly stupid/bad that they crack me up, they aren't intentional, and there are a lot of them; the rest is just plain bad, stupid and/or irrelevant. A movie like Evil Dead gets credit for being bad at it's own expense because it's the intended result-it' stupid and cheesy because Sam Raimi succeeded at what he was trying to do. This movie doesn't have that excuse, it's stupid and cheesy because the filmmakers failed so miserably. The crap result gets heaped on top of the crap writing and crap performances to make it a shame that the lowest rating a movie can be given is one for 'awful.' Watching this movie has the same effect as listening to a Billy Madison essay--"Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it." I should be able to give this movie something around a -5.
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9/10
Another Great Abandoning
Gabriel Arthur Petrie27 January 2004
(* Spoilers Ahead *) In Mad Max, a single police department with a few highway cops and patrolmen maintain civil order in a desolated region of Australia, apparently post-nuclear apocalypse. "Max" ends up losing absolutely everything civilized in his life -- everything. Not a drop of heart's blood is spared "Max" as he rips himself apart, trying to free himself of the chains and bonds of civilization in order to take revenge on the men who stole his world away. When it's all done, he wanders away from absolutely everything.

Mel Gibson's "Max" character returns in "Road Warrior", where the remnant of civilization has been left behind in favor of complete anarchy in the middle of the desert where an oil well refinery is the strongly-defended holdout of some kind of corporate collective, against growing bands of interested investors who would like to trade bullets and lives for the thinning lifeblood of petroleum. The leader of the wackos is absolutely cartoonish, sort of a psychotic pro-wrestler genius, while the leader of the recluses is dripping with ignorance and a desperate need to maintain his egotism. Every single person knows why they are in that desert, fighting -- because they can't get away from the the vehicles and the combustion. It's everything in their life. The distance between meals and drinks is dozens of miles. The distance to the nearest "real" civilization is not even survivable. Those who hold the vehicles hold the supreme power. "Max" delivers the oil-barons into salvation, but at a heavy loss, then once again wanders away from all that has come to pass.

Finally "Max", come into his own with a well-outfitted gravy train, is wandering the desert apparently finally convinced that he is the beacon of civilization, not some building or crowd. His delusion is sorely broken right at the beginning of the movie, and with nothing but his boots and a flute he's forced to rejoin humanity, but why we aren't exactly sure. He's been through it before and he knows what will happen, but still he saunters into "Bartertown" where he meets the sexy "Auntie Entity" (Tina Turner) who rules with elegance and ferocity, and agrees to scratch her back if she'll rub his.

Tina Turner's delivery as "Aunty Entity" is passionate. When she is stood off by the uppity "Master-Blaster", you can hear the hurt pride in her voice as she admits her humility. And when the real loser of Thunderdome is swiftly decided, you can see the fear in her eyes as everything, all the orders of civility she has cherished and sacrificed who knows what for, falls apart right under her hands. As the chaos grows, she looks above for guidance but sees only the mindless crowd, just as desperate as she and even more powerless. Her delivery from the middle of thunderdome is moving, but short compared to the brotherly storytelling of the very artful "Dr. Dealgood" (Edwin Hodgeman.) Nevertheless, what small part Turner is given to play is played from the bottom of her heart and you are thoroughly convinced that she is who she portrays. Her chain-mail suit could have been a little more transparent, though. The rest of the characters in "Bartertown", some recognizable from the earlier films, are real in a faery-tale sort of way that seems to follow naturally behind the previous films: in "Mad Max", the characters' selves were all dying like lights on their way to burning out; in "Road Warrior", their selves were completely gone, wasted with nothing but animal behaviors left; in "Thunderdome"'s "Bartertown", the desolation of the human inner being has proved to be merely a loss of luxury and comfort, and we see that deep inside these layers of modern dross most man and women really are larger than life, in their hopes and dreams and their achievements. "Max", unable to abandon life on his own this time around, is forced out into the desert wilderness to die.

We soon see the inherent human worth proved again in "Thunderdome"'s "Crack in the Earth", where little people, who never grew up with the bleak realities of technology and its apocalyptic inevitabilities as anything but faery-tales, are all as large of life as nature can provide for. The gorgeous "Suzannah" (Helen Buday, rhymes with boo tay,) drags "Max" back into life in a veritable Garden of Eden where children and children's' children, who are absolutely hysterical, spend every day of their lives in summer-camp dreamland. Finally, "Max" chooses not to abandon but to stay around and support -- whether because he's too tired to fight any more, or because he's learned to see a good thing when he's got it and not drop it for something better, it's hard to say -- maybe this is where he was on his way to in the first place. And yet none of this matters. Somehow, once again, humanity goes wrong over the same superstitions and arrogance as before, and a schism in the valley dwellers leads to calamity and a reconciliation with the recent past. "Max" decides to abandon the valley after all, proving finally that he really, truly is "MAD", sacrificing everything to return one more time to the truth that he and every man carries his best civilization with him wherever he goes.
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1/10
Boring, strange
rebeljenn19 January 2006
Like the previous two 'Mad Max' films, 'Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome' is not exception to the violence and strange plot. Mad Max is in a post-war society where he must destroy master blaster and get the children to 'tomorrow morrow land'. This is generally a warped film with Peter Pan references and Tina Turner, methane-pigs, and odd characters. I got very bored by watching it all, and it offered nothing to me. I did not feel inspired after watching this film; the only decent thing about this film were the extremely-odd characters that got picked off in various ways throughout the film. It's too weird for me, and it was much too dull.
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Gibson of Australia
tedg7 April 2008
You can tell a lot about a person from which of the three Mad Max films they think is best. I believe, however that it will be hard work, because there are things going on in these that register on the viewer, but are not obvious.

There's something quintessentially Australian about these. Though I'm not an Aussie myself, I've become attuned to some notions that seem peculiar to the Australian spirit. Which of those that are picked out by a viewer are what tells you who they are.

For me, this one is the one I like the best. Its reputed to have been influenced by Kurosawa samurai films and their derivative spaghetti westerns. But when I see this one, I see an Australian "Lawrence of Arabia." I almost see every scene as something from Lean's epic filtered through different Ox prisms: deliberate looseness, the perspective of the saved rather than the savior, the notion of distance, rugged children, Aboriginal myths, totemic kinship, civilization via barter, "laws."

But we keep Lean's desert, train, sun, tribal release and matters of "energy." We keep the playing fast with religious superstitions and mob dynamics. We even keep the tent.

What's added isn't much: a cargo cult backstory and an American woman who is notable for how ill suited she is for her surroundings. A couple of Mel's scowls. The sense of fair play.

Terry Hayes wrote this and the previous one excepting stunts. I think its pretty good, what he's done in terms of adding some structure to the tell.

Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.
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1/10
I just threw up in my own mouth
mattryan0026 June 2003
Alright, it's time to choke back the vomit and write a quick comment about this one.

I was all of 2 years old when this one came out, and just saw it for the first time this evening. Holy crap folks.

This is probably the biggest piece of nonsensical garbage I have ever seen. Without a doubt, one of the worst in terms of plotline, dialogue, and characters that I have ever seen.

For the love of God, don't waste your time on this garbage - it makes no sense, and even if you can piece it together, it's so completely not worth your time.

I found myself uttering the words, "What the f**k?" over and over while watching this one. I couldn't believe that such an acclaimed movie could be so awful.

My first 1 rating on IMDB for this flick: it earned it.

If I wanted to be tortured for 100 minutes I would watch 5 episodes of Full House back-to-back. Hearing Dave Coulier say, "Cut...it...out" with those hand gestures for an hour and forty minutes isn't even as bad as this movie. Well, I got sidetracked there. Have a good one and stick to Mad Max 1 & 2 if you want something watchable.
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6/10
Perfectly watchable, although it's the least of the series
Leofwine_draca20 August 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Now I do enjoy the MAD MAX films. They're the epitome of Australian cult filmmaking on a budget: filled with uniquely Aussie humour, outlandish characters and plenty of action. In fact, MAD MAX 2 is one of my favourite films ever, finishing with that massive, sprawling chase sequence that's still inspiring filmmakers today (Neil Marshall's DOOMSDAY, anyone?). For some reason, I'd never got around to watching this, the third in the series, although I had seen snippets of it on TV. I wasn't impressed by the scenes I saw: it seemed cheesier and sillier than what had come before, more child friendly. And the presence of Tina Turner seemed a definite distraction.

When I saw MAD MAX BEYOND THUNDERDOME was showing on TV again, I decided to bite the bullet and sit down and watch it, fearing the worst. I didn't get that, but this is definitely the weakest MAD MAX film of the series. The heart and soul of the story is missing from this one. It seems like a tired repeat of the last movie, with an unwelcome American presence in the likes of Tina Turner and more Hollywood ideals. Much of the blame must lie on the troubled production: the producer died causing George Miller to back out and only direct the action sequences while another hand took over the character and dialogue moments. The result is a mixed production. The action scenes, of which there are only really two – the 'gladiator combat' scene in the Thunderdome, and the final chase – are exquisite, as good as that which has come before, and very entertaining. Not original, but still entertaining.

The non-action scenes drag like heck. The colony of feral children are mostly irritating, with too many attempts to make them 'cute'. They actually reminded me of the Ewoks in RETURN OF THE JEDI. Gibson's character is underwritten in this one, so that he barely speaks and seems like a void at the centre of the film. There's no sense of his desperation or his primal nature here, he's just a stock hero character. I found Tina Turner to be pretty insipid as the would-be villainess, although I was happy to see Bruce Spence returning as the helicopter pilot, albeit he plays a different character this time around. I was also delighted by the casting of veteran dwarf actor Angelo Rossitto who bags something of a swan song performance late on in his career. So, the final result: a hit and miss effort, soon forgotten. The final chase scene, though, is worth watching, even if it is a case of revisiting past glories.
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6/10
The weakest of the original trilogy but still entertaining stuff
tomgillespie20021 September 2015
From the opening shot of wandering nomad and mulleted anti-hero Max Rockantansky (Mel Gibson), travelling along the endless Australian plains in a makeshift vehicle put together from spare auto-parts and whatever junk he came across on the road and pulled along by camels, we know that the world George Miller created back in 1979 has descended even further into apocalyptic turmoil, and we are now even further from civilised society than ever before. Max has his vehicle and supplies stolen by Jebediah the Pilot (Bruce Spence), so he is forced to wander barefoot through the desert until he comes across a community dubbed Bartertown, a place where you can trade anything or anyone.

Like the vehicles in the world of Mad Max, Bartertown is hammered together from spare parts. It is ruled by Aunty Entity (Tina Turner), who is locked in a constant power-struggle with Master Blaster, a grotesque tag-team who overlooks the pits below the town where pigs are farmed and harvested for methane gas. Master is a dwarf played by Angelo Rossitto who rides on the back of Blaster, a giant of a man who wears a huge concealing helmet, and is played by Paul Larsson. Master Blaster may be George Miller's most interesting creation, and as Max inevitably faces Blaster is the arena known as the Thunderdome - where all quarrels are concluded as two men enter but only one leaves - one of the most inventive scraps in cinema history plays out, as they bounce at each other on huge elastic bands and hack at each other with all manners of weapons.

Yet that is only half of the film. Miller resigned himself to just directing the action scenes following the tragic death of his friend and location scout Byron Kennedy, so the rest of the film was put in the hands of George Ogilvie. Narrowly escaping Bartertown with his life, Max discovers the young survivors of a plane crash who has developed their own little tribal society, and it's here that the film goes a bit Peter Pan. Whether this was down to Miller's absence or not - Beyond Thunderdome lacks the edge of its predecessors, occasionally dipping into traditional mainstream fantasy fare and losing focus of its antagonists motivation. Still, the film delivers where expected - the action scenes. Again we get a tanker being chased down by an army of baddies in doomsday vehicle's, and again we are treated to some awe-inspiring stunts that hold up even today. It's the weakest of the original trilogy but hugely entertaining stuff.
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1/10
Not the best mad max
deneen016 January 2008
This is not exactly what I would call a Mad Max film, after seeing Road Warrior and experiencing the excellence of that film, I felt somewhat disappointed after seeing this. It supposedly started out as some kind of kids in the wilderness film, and was merged with the Mad Max franchise(bad idea). The casting was not exactly the best, I mean come on Tina Turner? One of the main problems with this film is that there are no good villains. No Wez, no Humungus, not even a decent Toecutter! Nothing really even happens, if you are going to plan on seeing this sub par action flick (can it even be called that?) make sure you see Mad Max 2 or Mad Max, or better yet both. Another problem with this film is that there are too many people, even the Thunderdome battle sequence is dull, Max doesn't even kill anyone! The music is bad, the characters are bad (not in the good way) and after seeing this film, it left a very bad taste in my mouth.
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5/10
Good action, but such a different turn from the other Mad Max films
Kristine28 January 2008
A few weeks ago, I picked up the Mad Max 2 and Mad Max 3 combo for ten bucks, I figured since I was a fan of Mel Gibson, why not see the movies that put him on the map? So when I saw the first Mad Max, I was really impressed, what they had to work with, they created a good low budget action film. Mad Max 2 had nothing but awesome action sequences and a cool rebel that was charismatic, strong, handsome, and just so awesome that could always be known to us as Mad Max. Now we have Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, I have to say while the action sequences are pretty good, I know why not too many enjoy this sequel, it definitely took a strange turn from the series. But it was still kind of an interesting story, with Tina Turner, that was a strange role for her to take on.

Mad Max has changed a little bit since his day as the hero, he comes to a land where all his possessions have been taken away from him. He is forced to join a group where they beat each other to the death in the Thunderdome. But when Mad Max doesn't like the rules and refuses to follow them, he's in big trouble. He makes a run for it, but the gang is now after him and will make sure that he pays for this love for humanity. He is pushed into the desert where he encounters these children, he promises to take them to a land that they were heading for called Tomorrow Morrow Land, clever title, huh? But together they head to the world that seems better without being caught by Aunt Entity.

Mad Max Thunderdome is over all entertaining, I wouldn't say that this is a bad film. I think just compared to the other two Mad Max films, this seemed a bit flawed. It was a little bit of a different story to take on, but the one thing that is for sure, is any action lover will be satisfied. Tina Turner was actually pretty decent as Aunt Entity, it was very strange to see her take on the role, especially with those earrings she had to wear, lol. But Mel Gibson and she both were cool to watch, I would recommend this if you are a fan of the original Mad Max films, just to complete the series.

5/10
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6/10
Moses Going into the Desert
whpratt119 October 2007
Mel Gibson put his heart and soul into this film and I admire his great acting abilities as the role of Mad Max along with Tina Turner. However, this is just a story about Mad Max going into a desert and giving children of the desert a new life with happiness. This particular film was a big disappointment to me and I could have found a better way of spending my time than looking at a film that failed to live up to other Mad Max films. I am sure there was plenty of money spent in making this film, but it certainly does not measure up to the other Mel Gibson films. Love all kinds of films but this particular film was nothing I expected and I am glad it was produced and can be forgotten completely about.
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10/10
Dusty Australia Action
sixtwentysix27 April 2004
"Where there was desert, now there's a town. Where there was robbery, there's trade. Where there was despair, now there's hope. Civilization. And I'll do anything to protect it. Today, it's necessary to kill a man. What d'you say"

A savage parody of modern living with an action backdrop, this movie captures great attributes of old school golden age action/adventure movies (1980-1989) perfectly. From the film it was shot on, to the beautiful Austrailian settings, to the many, many great one liners and sharp humor this movie is high on my action movie list. The end of the world always fascinated me, the thought that civilization and technology could be lost and people could become savages rampaging the earth (more than usual) throwing spears and looking for M-16 ammo.

Max ends up in a strange place called Barter town in a plot that seems almost a remake of Mad Max 2... This film however has an X factor that puts it above the others in my mind, maybe it was the production quality. A certain Lord of the Flies bit is injected and it gives a welcome respite from the dusty dunes. Interesting characters almost everywhere Max goes, Tina Turner however gives an interesting performance as Aunty Entity and the two have magnificent chemistry. "Ain't we a pair..." Indeed.

People seem to be confused on how to classify this film, is it a sequel, remake?? But if you look at the others they all have similar traits. I think of it more like Sergio Leone's Man with No Name Trilogy... Similar, yet not quite sequels. George Miller leaves half puzzles around with the dialog and set pieces and interesting quirks in the scenery giving you a quirky feeling that draws you into this strange place.

A great film and well worth a watch late at night or on a lazy Sunday afternoon.
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