BY ALEXANDRA NAKELSKI
In part of our rebranding we are welcoming all formats of blogging. Some may be stream of consciousness, anecdotal experiences of film, and more academic/critical reviews.
Watching film had in recent years gotten arduous. For the festival, for reviews…it had somewhere along the way lost the fun. I was no longer looking forward to seeing film, but rather, it was a chore. I decided to fall in love with movies again and just watch and write without imposing any rules upon myself as my academic career had become very structured and creatively limited. How we feel when we see a film that resonated with us long ago seems to build in its potency as the years go buy. The appreciation builds and we see with both more educated eyes and the initial delight in our hearts when we first experienced the film.
I just made my Grandma’s special recipe meatballs, grabbed a bottle of vodka and thought I would remember why I am doing this damn PhD. Popped in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome.
The 80s were bold. Period. Right off the bat…the movie hasn’t even started yet and Tina Turner graces the credits with “One of the Living.” People forget how powerful intro and finale credit sequences are; they set the audience up for the tone of the film…the feel… the power…
Tina you are a legend. The film hasn’t even started yet and it is awesome.
I am so proud to be a member of Gen X even if “We are the children, the last generation, We are the ones they left behind”.
I am content with being the forgotten generation…this awesomeness is our legacy…I watch this…proud…and melancholy…hoping when I do cross over I can be there again. Basking in the bold confidence of the decade…the music, the feeling, the unity.
Before smart phones…before social media…this is how we connected. It was real and it was on FIRE.
Her voice. It sounds like Nunzios on Menaul ABQ, NM…eating Pizza in the mid 80s, going to the dollar theater…living in the now…there is no past or present only the magical now…before the Internet…before social media. We didn’t want to be anywhere else; we were there in the moment. I long for these times. I am not that old but feel like the age of the elders…wishing it was the Apocalypse…wishing I could go back in my mind…Sitting around a campfire telling people how things were before computers infiltrated our culture completely.
The music is what makes this film. Tina Turner’s eternal Power…this is how I know her…I didn’t know Ike was at the time or any of her 70s career. I didn’t know any of that till later…she was Mad Max and she was cool. This is how she is eternal. (Note to self: re-watch What’s Love Got to Do With It later)
They start this movie like “this film is AWESOME” so confident…so bold. I am sold…it IS AWESOME…I don’t care what I see after this. The credits set it up to be the fucking be all end all of the trilogy…I don’t care what ANYONE says about this installment. Because of Tina Turner alone, Beyond Thunderdome is epic!
What’s a little fallout…eh…” when a local tries to sell Mel Gibson water upon entering Barter Town. Sounds like our current government. That water is probably more pure than that in Flint, MI. Perhaps it is time to press reset.
Bust a Deal Face the Wheel. In the post-apocalyptic savage times, catch phrases are preferred mode of communication and thought. So does that mean we are living in dystopian times currently?
Can we give a shout out to iconic 80s zoom- in’s?
The side eye of Aunty’s in the Thunderdome’s zoom in shot similarly to and just as compelling as Mola Ram’s in Temple of Doom. And WHO is “Dr. Dealgood”?! Aunty’s chamberlain freaked me out when I was young with his black coat donning shoulder pads that would shame the cast of Dynasty.
Captain Walker. While this film has a clear bifurcated emphasis. I previously never cared for this latter tribe of kids looking for their savior. However, seen now as an adult, their metaphoric purpose nicely compliments the wasteland portion of Bartertown. In historical hindsight they represent Gen X…the lost or forgotten generation. We are the ones they left behind. Told promises of great glory. Left alone with legends and imagination yearning to return to the rest of the world and having a place in it.
Well aren’t we a pair? Raggedy Man!
Can’t have a Mad Max film without a wasteland chase. It is a toss up for my costume of choice in post apocalyptic times to wear chain mail like Tina or style myself like the thug with the kabuki accoutrement.
My stream of consciousness concludes here as I am melancholy that the franchise did not end here. Anyone familiar with my work knows how I feel about remakes and reboots. In my mind, Mel Gibson IS Max. There is no getting around that. People are free to concoct other dystopian tales like those seen in Divergent and The Hunger Games. However, Mad Max is also connected to the late 70s and 80s. Fury Road is anachronistic to me and does not offer the same essence the trilogy has. You can’t simply plop a title from the past into today’s consciousness and expect the same result. Sorry, but we don’t need another hero.