Remembering when Max wasn’t Quite so Mad

Fire up the dune buggy, because The Road Warrior is the Greatest Movie EVER!

Click on the movie poster or the title above to download our review of the film.

Review in a Nutshell:  The Road Warrior is a genre-defining action film with an influence in both look and execution that cannot be understated.  It also has some of the best car-chase scenes captured on film.

This movie contains:

Lord Humungus, Rockin’ the Mic.

Vernon Wells, The Definition of Post-Apocalypse Thuggery.

Oh yeah, Mel Gibson was in this, too.

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22 Responses

  1. This is one I feel I can never fully appreciate enough. I really should watch it again soon. I am the loser that really digs the 3rd one kids and all I enjoy it. And of course you gotta love the original for The Toe-Cutter and his chums.

  2. Great podcast, and nice to hear from Catherine again.

    I am puzzled by your saying that no one knew that the gas wasn’t in the tanker. In all my viewings I’ve never thought that Max and the others were unaware that they were decoys. It doesn’t make sense that the decoys wouldn’t notice that sand was being poured into the tank and that the gas was being loaded in barrels.

    Also, the gyrocopter pilot joined up with the tribe later, so there must have been some kind of rendezvous point set up for the decoys, if the intent was to screw over Max and the others I doubt they would have been told where to go.

  3. Max clearly didn’t know that the tanker was a diversion. Otherwise, his reaction to the sand pouring out of it (which you can see in the screencap above) wouldn’t have been nearly as ambivalent. The question remains as to whether Virginia Hey’s character and the others defending the tanker knew. I’m not certain that they did.

  4. Maybe, but then his reaction to everything in this movie was ambivalent.

  5. Gotta disagree with Paul, Mad Max is my favourite of the trilogy and Thunderdome was my least, with Road Warrior being in the middle.

  6. Goob, where would put Year of Living Danerously in terms of Mel Gibson’s breaking out? I think that movie came out after Road Warrior.

  7. I’ve never seen The Road Warrior, i saw Mad Max along time and that’s about it.

  8. More Katherine the Great! Yay! It’s nice hearing her get to talk about a movie she actually liked, too!

  9. Both Mad Max and Road Warrior are superb in my opinion, though very different kinds of movies, which is part of why I like the two of them together so much. And the story of how Mad Max got made and who made it is wonderful. If you ever get a chance to see a Aussie biker film called Stone, it’s basically the same bunch of people minus Mel Gibson.

    I think you’re not giving enough credit to Papagallo — I think he was willing to sacrifice himself just as much as he was willing to sacrifice Max and everyone else. The weight of leadership and all. He’s no more evil or good than anyone else in this movie, including Max.

    Daryl is right — when Thunderdome came out, most fans of the first two were disappointed. Too goofy, too Hollywood, less a sequel and more a very big budget Road Warrior rip-off. I don’t have strong feelings about Thunderdome one way or the other. But anyone who doesn’t know “two men enter, one man leaves” needs a smackin’.

    And Paul is mostly right — this movie was mainstream-ish in the US. We saw it in the theaters, as did many people who wouldn’t have seen a sci-fi film.

    But remember that the 80s were a weird time. With no home video market to speak of (until the end of the decade), any movie made was made to be released to theaters. Thus, you get movies like Treasure of the Four Crowns and Cherry 2000 and weird dubbed Italian movies getting theater releases with ad campaigns and such.

    It might be more accurate to say that Raiders of the Lost Ark and Return of the Jedi were mainstream, and Road Warrior was a “sleeper” hit, something like Juno but WAY more awesome. Much of the Road Warrior‘s success, though, came Beastmaster style, as Paul points out — when it played endlessly on cable TV. But also remember — Marx Brothers movies were mainstream when they were released, but you’d be hard-pressed to find college kids who have seen one, and Road Warrior IS nearly 30 years old.

  10. “Road Warrior was a “sleeper” hit, something like Juno but WAY more awesome”

    Thanks Keith. now I have images of Humungus in Micheal Cera’s role or maybe in JK Simmon’s role.The point is you’re making think about how Juno would’ve turned out had Lord Humungus been in it.

  11. Well, perhaps if Juno had taken Lord Humongous’ advice to “just walk away” from Michael Cera, she wouldn’t have found herself in that predicament

  12. “Once again you disappoint me, Juno. Now I have to unleash my dogs of war on your boyfriend.”

  13. If you two keeping talking about Juno in relation to Road Warrior, I’m going to have to review something truly awful. Like not even good awful. Bad awful. Like Dracula: The Dirty Old Man. It will hurt M.O.M., and you will be responsible. Can you really live with that on your consciences?

  14. That’s dirty pool, Goob. How dare you try to drag your poor sweet mother into this. Shame on you.

  15. Actually, I’m surprised M.O.M. wasn’t your co-host for Road Warrior.

  16. Dear Gooberzilla-

    Would you consider doing a Terminator podcast, ’cause that would kick ass.

    I’m just saying.

  17. I’ll have to put that one to the audience. Do you think there’s a need for me to examine the original Terminator film? Write in, send me an e-mail, or hit me up on Facebook with your opinions regarding that subject.

  18. I honestly can’t see any good reason for you to go over such well known (and well-worn) territory as either Terminator or T2.

    I personally would much prefer to hear yours (and MOM’s, and/or Catherine’s) opinions of those films that either inspired Terminator, such as Westworld. Or were inspired by it, such as Zeiram.

  19. About the budget: Road Warrior cost $8.5 million American dollars NOW!

    The hilarious thing is that coastline “Surfers’ Paradise” that’s the Promised Land for the compound people is known (or was known) by local Aussies as “Bludgeoners’ Paradise”.

    One of the things my friend whose a big fan on this movie that he brought up when I watched it last is that the compound people aren’t afraid of being killed by the bandits, it’s more that that if Humungus takes the refinery, even if he kept his promise, the marauders would become a major power in the wasteland, expanding their range of their highwaymanship, pillaging, and rape. Giving them the refinery would be worse than blowing it up while Pappagallo’s people are in it. After the tanker battle, they’ve burned most of their fuel, lost their leadership, most of their men and vehicles, the marauders are finished as a threat and a gang, and will probably not last long before being killed by other wasteland gangs.

  20. That leads into one of the reasons I suspect that few believed Humongous’ offers to leave. Since I saw no evidence that the raiders had any ability to run a refinery he would have needed the expertise of the townspeople to guarantee a continuing supply.

  21. watch this movie with subtitles on! lord humungus calls his gang the “smegma lords”

  22. I just discovered this podcast. I’m hooked.

    I think The Road Warrior is a truly great film. It’s nice to hear that others recognize the complexity behind maybe the greatest action film ever.

    The movie showed on one screen for one week in Memphis, then got bumped for a Hollywood film. I saw it 13 times in that week. I dragged more and more people with me each night. They brought their friends.

    The first night, there were about twenty people in the crowd. The last night, the theater was full. The theater owner told me it killed him to have to close it, but the other movie was already booked.

    On my second or third viewing, it was clear to me that the good guys on the truck knew they were sacrificing themselves. Papagallo knew he was sacrificing Max. Max didn’t know. Papagallo was willing to sacrifice himself, but hoped he might get away.

    The scene where Max plays the music box destroys me. He enjoys the tune, realizes he can’t remember it, and then recognizes what it means that he can’t. All without a word of dialog. When I saw that I knew that Mel was a great actor.

    And the stunts. Damn! Those guys need wheelbarrows for their balls.

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