There's something interesting about how the summer 2015 movie season is rolling out, so far. Things's started off with the biggest superhero sequel ever, The Avengers: Age of Ultron, and after a week's break came Mad Max: Fury Road from director George Miller - a film already being called 'one of the best action films in years.'
However, what's interesting about having Avengers 2 and Mad Max 4 in such close proximity is how different they are in terms of cinematic construction. While Joss Whedon's superhero epic has plenty of big CGI visuals, George Miller's Fury Road is earning praise for its use of practical effects and props to convey big-screen action.
Movie fans seem to be weighing the differences in approach right now - which is a perfect time to see how both films created said action onscreen.
Check out two featurettes which detail how the filmmakers behind both Age of Ultron and Fury Road created those blockbuster action sequence, which are are entertaining audiences all over the world.
On the Marvel side, it's interesting to hear Joss Whedon and Kevin Feige talk with such enthusiasm about how epic and next-level the opening sequence of Age of Ultron is. Our editors certainly didn't find the HYDRA base assault to be all that impressive when discussing it on the Avengers 2 podcast - and we haven't seen a very pronounced fan reaction even while watching the movie in theaters amongst big audiences. That said, it's obvious there are many fans who enjoyed the sequence immensely; but is it really a next-level example of action movie making?
Take Mad Max: Fury Road as comparison:
For more of Mad Max's stuntwork, you should check out the Twitter feed of Charlize Theron's stunt double, Dayna Grant (via Collider):
— Dayna Grant (@Daynastunts) May 15, 2015
The main theme you hear in the Mad Max featurette that's nowhere in The Avengers video is the risk taken to deliver those impressive visuals and action moments onscreen. Actors Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron and Co. (along with director George Miller) all discuss the commitment to doing things practical and real - even when it meant putting bodies or big expensive props on the line for a specific shot. I think most people who see Fury Road will agree: the result is well worth the risk. Meanwhile, given the limited scope of the Avengers featurette its hard to know how the cast felt filming the scene; but given that Robert Downey Jr. isn't even on set for most Iron Man sequences, it's hard to say that Avengers 2's action feels "tangible."
Each moviegoer has his or her own tastes and preferences when it comes to the style and format of movie making, but it'd be surprising (to me at least) to have someone make a valid attempt to argue that Whedon created better onscreen action than Miller. For my own part, Mad Max: Fury Road was an undeniably truthful reminder of why the era of practical effects and stunt work needs to make a big comeback and replace overly indulgent CGI-heavy sequences (see: that Avengers team leap shot). But that's just me.
How do you movie fans feel about seeing the examples of Avengers 2 and Mad Max: Fury Road together in such close proximity? Was like seeing a night and day difference in action filmmaking? Or are the two just completely separate things in your mind?
Both The Avengers: Age of Ultron and Mad Max: Fury Road are now playing in theaters everywhere.Patrick Wilson as Freddie Mercury Makes Us Want an Aquaman Musical
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