Film: Mad Max (1979) / Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981)

Mad Max / Mad Max 2 @

So obviously it’s the roads.  The hot, flat, never-ending roads, the cars and the bikes and the carnage.  This is why you keep going back to the first two Mad Max movies and their low-down, widescreen, undercranked mayhem.

Away from the tarmac, what you remember as soon as you start watching is just how off-kilter these films are.  There’s an underlying crazy to proceedings that seeps out of every frame and performance and in the middle of it all is Mel Gibson looking like a man who is trying to hold it all together, as if he can’t quite comprehend what director George Miller is up to or where Hugh Keays-Byrne’s performance as the Toecutter will go next.  Perhaps he’s just puzzled about what happened between movies to move the setting so quickly from ‘world winding down’ to ‘s&m petrol wars’.

Highly Recommended.

..although I now feel compelled to revisit Bartertown, which, well, you know.

Film: Apocalypto (2006)

Apocalypto @

Apocalypto was on TV last night and I did that thing where you suddenly find that you’ve stayed up till the early hours to watch a film that you already own.  My little boy is getting up a 7am no matter what but holy shit did you see that decapitated head POV shot?!

Made after the quite dreadful The Passion of the Christ (2004), this has got to be Mel Gibson’s finest film.  It’s a sure-footed and lean action movie (essentially a chase) made all the more powerful by the director’s penchant for mad, savage violence and eye for capturing movement.

It’s a shame he probably won’t get to do anything of quality again because a bit of bonkers goes a long way.

Highly recommended.