7.0/10
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324 user 221 critic

Mad Max (1979)

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

Director:

George Miller

Writers:

James McCausland (screenplay), George Miller (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
920 ( 241)

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4 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mel Gibson ... Max
Joanne Samuel ... Jessie
Hugh Keays-Byrne ... Toecutter
Steve Bisley ... Jim Goose
Tim Burns ... Johnny the Boy
Roger Ward ... Fifi
Lisa Aldenhoven ... Nurse
David Bracks ... Mudguts
Bertrand Cadart ... Clunk
David Cameron ... Underground Mechanic
Robina Chaffey ... Singer
Stephen Clark Stephen Clark ... Sarse
Mathew Constantine Mathew Constantine ... Toddler
Jerry Day ... Ziggy
Reg Evans ... Station Master
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:

The Maximum Force of the Future. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM Studios (us) | Official Facebook | See more »

Country:

Australia

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 March 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mad Max See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$350,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$8,750,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$100,000,000, 31 December 1982
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition)

Sound Mix:

Mono | 4-Track Stereo (Japan theatrical release)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Judy Davis was said to have auditioned for the role of Jessie and passed over, but George Miller has declared she was only there to accompany her classmates Mel Gibson and Steve Bisley. See more »

Goofs

When Max is playing with the rubber mask to cheer up a "not grumpy" Jessie before he goes to see Goose, the baby (Sprog) in the background has different toys in his left hand each time we see him. When Max takes off the mask, Sprog has a brick, ball or similar object that he can clearly lift, and the plush toy is behind him, out of reach. When Max jumps onto the table, we see Sprog in close-up holding the barrel of Max's service revolver. Then after Jessie tells Max to "get out of here" Sprog now has the plush toy. See more »

Quotes

[the gang is holding Sprog]
Jessie: [pleading] Please. Give me my baby.
Toecutter: [feigning concern] Jessie, Jessie, Jessie. You've not got a sense of humor.
[whispering]
Toecutter: You've got a pretty face, though. Awful pretty. Awful pretty.
[brightly]
Toecutter: I suppose you don't need a sense of humor with a pretty face. The only trouble is though, Missy, if you should...
[wiping his face roughly with his hand, then whispering]
Toecutter: lose the face.
See more »

Alternate Versions

In 2000, MGM (which by this time had assumed control of the American International Pictures/Filmways/Orion Pictures library) re-issued the film in limited roadshow release in its original uncut version with the Australian dialogue track intact. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Room 237 (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Rocker
(uncredited)
Written by Bon Scott, Angus Young and Malcolm Young
Performed by Vincent Gil
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Low budget classic that is now a genre landmark.
4 March 2008 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

Set somewhere in the future we are privy to a world where the roads are ruled by maniac gangs with souped up cars, and bikers that literally could come from hell. Trying to stop these marauding loons are the overstretched police force who themselves ride in exceptionally fast cars. At the front of this story is Max Rockatansky, a good honest cop trying to hold his own against the chaotic world that is forming around him. After his best friend is burned and left for dead he decides enough is enough and thinks about retiring from the service, but whilst on a vacation with his wife and child things go decidedly bad and Max becomes an avenging force of fury with devastating affect.

When evaluating this film I feel it really needs to be put into perspective just how brilliant a job director George Miller did with next to no cash to work with, in fact Miller edited the film in his own bedroom just to emphasise the low-fi nature of the beast. The costumes are excellent, the cast are terrific, with Mel Gibson as Max particularly impressive, and here we have villains to truly fit the word villainous, but it's the stunts and chase sequences that makes this film a rich rewarding experience. The opening ten minutes alone are pure adrenalin pumping genius, but the film as a whole delivers a crash bang wallop punch that has often been imitated since its release, but rarely bettered, and although the heart of the film is a simple revenge story, it grabs your attention and delivers right to the corking finale, 8/10.

Footnote: Region 2 Users should note that the bargain bucket Mad Max Trilogy flip pack set still contains the foolishly dubbed version of this film, incredibly stupid move from the American distributors.


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