Tom Hardy has got a hand fork stuck to his face.
I realise it’s been an awfully long time since I’ve been to the cinema to see a mainstream action film (yes, I’m a movie snob, but in my defence I have ‘fessed up to that particular corner of wankery in previous posts) and I fully expected to have missed some developments, but seriously.
Is this a thing now?
Under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t have deigned to go and see Mad Max: Fury Road either, but I read this article on The Daily Dot about how the pro-feminist themes in it had incensed some men’s rights activists and was inexplicably drawn.
Before I could get to that though, I had to overcome several issues that may or may not have become action movie tropes in my absence.
The fact that everything looks and feels like a computer game. Specifically OddWorld.
That the only filters the studio had access to were warm and cold.
The heavy, heavy debt it owes to Marilyn Manson’s aesthetic circa 1996 .
Not to mention the fact that every time someone shouted ‘WAR BOYS’, a picture of this woman appeared in my head.
But I persevered. And you know what? Despite my rampant cynicism, I started to enjoy the damn thing.
Not only because it’s the first action film I’ve ever seen that represents people (not just women, activists) as diverse individuals instead of conforming to a gender stereotype that defines itself via the arbitrary exclusion of certain behaviours.
Or that despite my earlier sniping, the sets, cinematography and narrative had me transfixed.
It wasn’t even because with all the explosions, cartoon violence and outlandish vehicles racing through the desert, it came over like some vast, heavily militarised Wacky Races for the Xbox generation.
Although that may well have helped.
I will never understand how this film got made. But I’m delighted it did, and cannot thank the men’s activist movement enough for alerting me to its existence.
Seriously, guys. I’d never have gone to see it without your panicked screaming and whining about how:
“men in America and around the world are going to be duped by explosions, fire tornadoes, and desert raiders into seeing what is guaranteed to be nothing more than feminist propaganda, while at the same time being insulted AND tricked into viewing a piece of American culture ruined and rewritten right in front of their very eyes.”
I’m really, really hoping that a number of other people will feel the same, the film will be a box office smash and in the future be seen as a watershed moment in mainstream action cinema.
Thanks to all of you. We live. We die. We live again indeed.