Sunday, September 6, 2015

Hit me with your best shot - Mad Max: Fury Road

By Sati. Sunday, September 6, 2015 ,

Mad Max: Fury Road is not only the only action movie in the world I'd call a masterpiece, a higher form of art all by its own, a crazed, beautiful ballet of violence and fight for survival but it's easily one of the most gorgeous movies ever made. To pick up a shot, a single shot that is the best in the film basically built out of incredible shots loaded with tons of meaning was not easy. Fury Road has a beautiful story and several wonderful relationships between characters often times encapsulated in the look in their eyes or in the composition of the shot. So I decided to go with the shot that shows so much of the film's most magnificent character - Furiosa, of its story and captures something action movies are not known for - depth and melancholy.

But before I get to talk about the shot I picked, let's appreciate the runner ups.
This is the film that has been in our cinematic lives for merely few months and yet shots like this one:


or this one:


are already there in cinematic history. They are instantly recognizable not just because of the movie's unique look but also because when you see those shots while watching the film, you're just hit with so much power the movie loaded them up with.

Then there are straight up action shots, so astonishing that you are just too impressed to even try to wonder how the hell did they managed to shoot that:


There's Brothers in Arms sequence, my favorite one in the movie which features this amazing moment:


Then there is this moment, and just for this moment Theron should be getting nominated left and right. Her entire performance is astonishing and worthy of hall of fame along with Linda Hamilton and Sigourney Weaver but here, when Furiosa remembers the gesture from home and looks like a little girl, back when she was happy... Ripley and Connor are badass but it's Furiosa who wins when you think of how much emotion was written into this character and how beautiful her heart is.


Then there are these moments:


I'd write about them but I'm in a glass case of emotion right now and about the explode under the sheer power or Max and Furiosa' relationship.

But the shot I picked is this:

It just hit me so hard in the cinema I legit gasped. And normally, if Mad Max :Fury Road wasn't such a great blend of in your face and profound, I'd find the symbolism in that scene - the girls holding the lantern in the darkness, with worried Furiosa in the foreground - a bit much. But I can't because it's just so brilliant and there's nothing cliche or simple about what that shot has to say.

There, through a single visual, we know everything - we see worried Furiosa, seemingly crushing under the burden she took onto herself - not just escaping, but being the one who is the source of hope for these girls she liberated. But Furiosa needn't worry - it's these girls who are on their own a source of hope. The good and courageous who want to be free. Even though they spent their lives in servitude, having their body treated like property, much like Furiosa who was abducted and made into a soldier, these women never relinquished their innocence and goodness and they never let the evil, the corruption and the violence tarnish their souls. They asked Furiosa to help them and Furiosa, who is truly a wonderful action heroine, risks everything to lead them into safety. Even when she is on the verge of death her only heartbreaking words show her innocence in her destination - HOME. Whatever happens, just get them HOME.

It is this amazing amount of heart and qualities so often associated with women that actually makes Furiosa stand out and stand above even those of the most iconic female characters - Theron's Furiosa shows fear - when she does what she intended and changes the course of the Rig. She shows sadness - when Max tells her the girl went under the wheels. And she is not afraid to ask for help when she needs Max to drive the wheel. Even after years of slavery, Furiosa can show trust, hope and forgiveness. And the same goes for the girls she is saving.

And in this shot the hope burns - in the lantern and in Furiosa's eyes. The world was killed, but there are still things out there that makes the good ones go on.

22 comments:

  1. One of the best day for night shots ever. I was wondering which shot you'll choose and I wasn't wrong when I thought about this one. Also my favorite shot, so perfect.

    ReplyDelete
  2. That is one of my favorite shots ever and certainly why I think it's the best film of the year so far.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great article! Fully justified choice of best shot in the movie.

    However my favorite shot is the one after she gets stabbed and her look at one of the girls which gets abducted into the vehicle of Immortan - how determined she is to get her back, regardless of how bleak the situation is.

    After that what follows is my favorite action sequence in the movie, in perfect combination with the soundtrack and the way it was directed. Despite Brothers In Arms being an almost equally good one, this one is I think even crazier, more heart pumping and cinematic, and I absolutely love it.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!

      Oh God that entire scene was just amazing, I love how at one point she is in so much pain and Max looks at her, horrified that he may lose her

      Delete
    2. Right!? But then there's not time for that. The vehicle he was driving started exploding. In yet another amazing scene.

      Delete
  4. I would have never been able to choose my favorite shot from this film, but I certainly like your selection. I can't wait to see this one again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same here, gonna see it again on Friday!

      Delete
  5. Great choice, and I loved the way you explained it. This film is chock full of amazing shots. Fury Road is going to change the way people make action films, I hope so anyway.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I hope so too, other action movies are crap comparing to this

      Delete
  6. I completely agree. That scene was so beautifully shot. Every scene was beautifully shot. I think the last time I gave a movie 5 out of 5 stars was 'Gravity.' 'Fury Road' was perfection. I can't wait for George Miller to take over the Man of Steel franchise. We might actually get to see a comic book masterpiece.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I kinda hope Miller just gives up on Superman and focus all his energy on more Mad Max :)

      Delete
  7. What a lovely post!! There are SO many great shots from this film but I LOVE the one you chose. It's really about Furiosa's journey and her bravery & kindness to rescue those girls. It's such an emotional scene indeed.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I most certainly LOVE the shot you choose as, you said it perfectly, encapsulates everything about this masterpiece. But I have to go with the first shot in your post as my absolute favorite. Never have I felt this much anguish and despair in a fictional character (done beautifully by Thereon) in the past....God knows how long. The backdrop of the sands being blown away also symbolize this very thing, bit by bit, pieces of her very will to live start to 'literally',turn to dust and fade away and made her character very easy to empathize with, distinguishing her from every other female-led action character (or any lead character for that matter)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I loved that Furiosa had so many feelings and wasn't your typical cold badass female in action movie. For me that places her above Connor and Ripley - she was much more human and also very feminine

      Delete
  9. Such a fantastic choice! I actually haven't seen that image until you posted it! This still holds the number one slot for me this year...it simply cannot be beat yet...if at all. And I hate action. But this is just perfection. Great shots!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I don't think anything will beat this for me this year, so glad to see people loving this movie!

      Delete
  10. Brilliant post! That shot is SO good, and the film is still my #1 of the year. Frankly, I think only The Revenant, Carol, or Macbeth could beat it at this point.

    ReplyDelete