While the new Hunger Games movie sits in theaters, another dystopian sci-fi film is preparing to make us fear the future. Today, Warner Bros. released a trailer for Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga, a spin-off of/prequel to Mad Max: Fury Road (which didn’t have Mel Gibson, so it’s socially acceptable to like it). Furiosa follows the female lead from Fury Road in an origin story that shows how she became a slave to that film’s villain, Immortan Joe. Anya Taylor Joy stars as Furiosa, replacing Charlize Theron, with Chris Hemsworth, Tom Burke, Angus Sampson, Daniel Webber, and Nathan Jones in supporting roles. Directed by George Miller, as all the Mad Max movies were, Furiosa will arrive in theaters on May 24, 2024. You can see the trailer below:
There are a couple of reasons Furiosa doesn’t interest me much, and the main one is that it’s a prequel. We know Furiosa can’t die, we know Immortan Joe can’t die or be deposed, and we know how this story will end up because we’ve seen Fury Road. So, who cares? We knew what little we needed to know about Furiosa in Fury Road. If Miller really wanted to do something more with the character, why not explore her tenure as the new ruler of Joe’s territory? Aside from not being a meaningless prequel with a pre-determined outcome, it would be something different, something that could show her character grow and change, maybe even face a new threat from different villains. But no, we’re effectively getting the same set-up and plot. Secondly, I know everybody loved it, but I thought Mad Max: Fury Road was fine, but nothing special. It epitomized style over substance, with its hyperactive camerawork doing little but distracting from the threadbare plot. The other Mad Max movies aren’t overly complex either, but the first two (both of which are better than Fury Road) let their simple narratives speak for themselves, allowing the characters to drive the narrative. And calling it A Mad Max Saga is a little annoying because Max isn’t in it; it’s bad enough Mel Gibson isn’t playing him anymore, but now the movies don’t even need his presence. It’s hard to care much about this one.