Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

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Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome is the third and last installment in the Mad Max trilogy. Mixing elements from the first two installments together and making the movie more accessible to a wider audience the movie, like the second one, has been very influential. The second introduced the world to a post-apocalyptic world in which people dress up like gay punks which has been mimicked multiple times, this time this movie is responsible for the music legacy that is Thunderdome. For those unaware, as it is more a European thingy, Thunderdome is the name of a series of CD’s, LP’s, House-parties, videos all containing Hardcore House music. The CD’s were extremely popular in the early/mid 90’s and sold over millions. The parties are still being held once or twice a year in the Netherlands. So the legacy of Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome is at least as impressive as that of Mad Max: The Road Warrior, but is the movie equally impressive?

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome basically takes off where The Road Warrior left off. Australia is still a post-apocalyptic wasteland and Max still a lonesome nomad who’s driving a camel-powered truck through the desert when he gets under attack by plane flown by the Gyro-copter guy from the previous movie. With his truck and camels stolen Mad Max heads further on foot and ends up in Bartertown: a first step in recreating a civilization where everybody trades things and where there is also electricity generated by the methane gas coming of pig shit. Running Bartertown is Aunty Entity, played by Tina Turner, who wants the operator of the pig shit refinery out of her way as he has become too arrogant and shuts the city off from electricity if she doesn’t acknowledge that he is the true ruler of Bartertown. This character is called Master Blaster and he consists of two units; a dwarf (Master) who is the brains and rides on the back of the muscle that is Blaster. Aunty strikes a deal with Max; fuel and transport in exchange for defeating Blaster in a cage fight. This cage is called the Thunderdome.

The Thunderdome sequence is one of the more impressive sequences from the franchise. Max and Blaster are in a giant cage attached by elastic strings to the top where also different weapons are stored for the fighters to get and to use. Sadly this sequence is only after 30 minutes into the movie after which the movie declines in its level of being interesting. Max gets exiled into the desert and rescued by a teen who brings him to her camp; an oasis in the middle of the desert consisting of only kids who speak like that kid from the movie Australia. They talk about the “Pox-Eclipse” and “Tomorrow-morrow Land” mainly because it has something cute to it. These are the Ewoks to the Mad Max series. These kids see in Max a prophetic figure called Captain Walker but he doesn’t see it that way himself of course. But the rascals do grow on someone so when a couple of them decide to go to Tomorrow-morrow Land (Bartertown in this case) Max pursuits to get them back and will bring down Bartertown in the proceedings.

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome is a bit of a mix between the first two movies. It still has the post-apocalyptic touch of the previous movie, but its plot is less bare-bones and feels bigger like the first movie. This movie is also PG so the action is less brutal and they even have kids on the poster to reach a wider audience. Oh, and the occasional titties have been removed.
Yet it still was an entertaining movie that I liked, partially out of nostalgic reasons of course. Mad Max 2 and 3 have been aired many many times while the original only is on TV every once in couple of years or so. When watching the movies in an a-chronological order you’re bound to find the first one the least impressive movie of the bunch. Parts 2 and 3 have defined our look on a post apocalyptic world. The first hasn’t got any of that so it kind of sticks out in a negative way.

Most people like the second movie the most, I don’t have a clear favorite. I can see why people think of it being the best but I found it a tad of being to low on plot and character development. Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome improves on character building and has a more fleshed out plot but lacks in the rawness of the action and it has kids. Lots of kids. So my scales are fairly balanced between the two in my opinion.

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome Screenshot

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome Poster
Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome Poster
Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome
  • Year:
  • Directors:
    • George Miller
    • George Ogilvie
  • Cast:
    • Mel Gibson
    • Tina Turner
    • Bruce Spence
    • Adam Cockburn
  • Genres:
    Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Running time:


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