Director George Miller returns to the hellish dystopian world of Max Rockatansky this year (following a three decades-long leave of absence), with the upcoming Mad Max: Fury Road. The movie not only ranks high on our rundown of our most anticipated 2015 releases, but it's got film geeks of all shades buzzing after but two trailers' worth of pure, unabashed, Road Warrior-style mayhem (brought to life with modern production values and filmmaking technology).
Tom Hardy stars in Fury Road as Max (Mel Gibson's previous role), a strong/silent type who is seeking some peace of mind (even in a bleak post-apocalyptic landscape) after suffering a personal loss. Charlize Theron costars as Imperator Furiosa, a survivor with an iron will (and a bionic arm) who's been rounding up every woman she can find in order to protect them... and (maybe) find a safe haven to call home.
The visual texture of Fury Road - with its unflattering earthy tones and careful blend of practical and digital components - helps with establishing the chaotic and primordial vibe of the film's futuristic setting, as do the character designs and the performances of the cast glimpsed in the trailer footage (especially that of a nearly-unrecognizable Nicholas Hoult as the unhinged Nux).
You can get another taste of that by scrolling through the below Fury Road image gallery (via Indiewire), which includes another look at original Mad Max (1979) costar Hugh Keays-Byrne as the main antagonist in Fury Road, Immortan Joe. He's the one armed with the long white hair and crazy mask, in case you weren't sure which of the wild-looking "Road Warriors" we're referring to (who's pictured here).
Big Summer 2015 titles like Avengers: Age of Ultron and Jurassic World will no doubt tear up the box office when they arrive in theaters, but Fury Road is one of those films that could easily sell a respectable number of tickets, before gaining more popularity and a cult following over the years ahead. It certainly has the makings of a great work of B-movie "high art," which is more than enough recommendation for the time being.
Rounding out the Fury Road cast in supporting roles (alongside Hardy, Theron, Hoult, and Keays-Bryne) are Rosie Huntington-Whiteley (Transformers: Dark of the Moon) and Zoë Kravitz (Divergent), plus Riley Keough (Jack & Diane), Nathan Jones (Conan the Barbarian), and Josh Helman (Jack Reacher)
Mad Max: Fury Road opens in U.S. theaters on May 15th, 2015.
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