With Summer 2015 coming to a close, it’s time for all of us to reflect on which movies made the biggest impact on us individuals or the cultural zeitgeist. Which movies will remain culturally relevant? Which movies grabbed us by our faces and yelled, “Remember me,” as blood spurted between its teeth? Our staff has gathered to provide their respective selections for the best movie from the Summer of 2015:
“Remember me.” The words spoken by Furiousa in her battle-hardened state exceedingly drive home the memorable mosaic of carnage, loss, hope, and adventure found within the new bible of action movies. Somehow, that still undersells it.
A fast-paced, action-packed, stunningly visual rock opera of a film, of course Mad Max: Fury Road is my pick for best film of the summer. Hell, it’s my pick for best film of the year. Maybe of the last ten years. MAYBE EVER. I’m sorry I’m getting excited, but if you’ve seen Fury Road, I’m sure you understand. The scope of this movie is massive, yet the characters are complex, the relationships intimate. The story is straightforward without being dim. The score is flawless. I could go on and on. Mad Max: Fury Road is insanely great.
A man suspended above a caravan of war machines with no guarantee of survival, a gorgeous vista of desert in view. A successor to a long dormant franchise that makes all other blockbusters look like bad jokes. George Miller gets to the heart of what action cinema can truly be with Mad Max: Fury Road, the best film of the summer and a frontrunner for the best of 2015.
Now this might be a controversial choice but I’m a wild card. I play by my own rules. I say the things we’re all thinking, but I’m not afraid to say them. My choice for best summer movie is something that might shock you. Nah, I’m just messing with you. Mad Max: Fury Road forever (forever ever? forever ever.). If you had told me a 70-year-old man would come in and change the entire game with a sequel to a Tina Turner movie, I wouldn’t have believed you, but the proof is all there in every glorious second of that beautiful movie.
Mad Max: Fury Road is an anomaly of sorts, an action film that offers unrelentingly artistic, aesthetic thrills. While it may only be a glorified chase scene in some respects, in others, it excels where other similar genre fare so often fails–in addition to its sheer visual audacity that will leave you breathless while watching, it is also in many ways quite smart, certainly more so than many of this summer’s other blockbuster offerings, anyway. With a strong, dynamic heroine in Furiosa, who often steals the show from title character, Max, much to the chagrin of some men’s rights activists (a hilarious anecdote that almost drove me to see the film, had I not already been interested beforehand), Fury Road is all around a powerful testament to what movies can be like if they just dared to be different.
Not only is Mad Max: Fury Road hands down the best film of 2015 so far, it is also one of the most purely cinematic moviegoing experiences you are likely to have in your lifetime. Fury Road is a revelation of action filmmaking, a shining example of everything the genre should be. It brings legitimate emotional weight to a simple story by combining a smart screenplay with George Miller’s downright vital direction. This is one for the history books, the kind of impactful and uniquely visceral visual spectacle that all action films must now strive for.
There’s a lot to praise about Fury Road, but what becomes clear on re-watch is the level of nuance to both Theron and Hardy’s performances. The expressions on their faces after Max says, “She went under the wheels” blows me away – so much emotion is expressed through physical movement. It’s cinema at its best. Now, the only way a sequel can top it will be to bring back The Road Warrior’s neckerchief’d dog.
Destruction and nihilistic carnage has never been as poetic as it is in Fury Road. In a world where destruction porn is prevalent and commonly successful, it is the film that we need but not the one we deserve. The film is absolutely bonkers: that rare breed of action filled with a depth that renders the emotional ride comparable to actually participating in a trans-desert automobile chase.
David Shreve, Jr.
When I tried to purchase my copy of Mad Max: Fury Road on Tuesday, the first three locations I tried were all sold out. I had a brief fantasy that the ensuing war to own this quite exceptional film might result in a collapse of civilization that mirrors the apocalypse in the Mad Max universe, and I could store copies of the Blu-Ray in the trunk of my Toyota sedan, tattoo digital codes on my back, rev my engine, and ride out to die historic on the capital beltway. That’s what Fury Road has done, enlivened the imagination of movie-goers like guzzolene spit into an engine, and if you’re wondering who’s crazier– Audiences Everywhere or the sites who are even bothering to list other films from the summer of 2015 as potential “bests”– witness us. Witness!