Thursday, February 11, 2016

#574: Mad Max 2

Directed by: GEORGE MILLER
1981, TSPDT Rank #515

This film clearly had a substantial budget increase compared to its more humble predecessor, but the increased funds were definitely not squandered here. Actually, Mad Max 2 is probably one of the more successful sequels out there, at least within the realm of well-known action/sci-fi franchises. The bigger budget is used to create more muscular, hard-hitting action sequences, which are framed by a more substantial narrative structure than the first film had - revolving around Max's interactions with a gasoline-hoarding desert tribe and the brutal gang they're at war with. The "dust and diesel" aesthetic is also cranked up to 11 and the action sequences are brimming with wild intensity - the manic and prolonged final chase sequence being the film's highlight. However, despite the film's many good points, some of the first film's mood of post-apocalyptic malaise is lost in the upgrade process, which causes this film to feel more like a different take on a similar concept, rather than a conventional sequel.

2016 list update

Well, it's that time of year again, and yes, I've had another lengthy break from the blog. However, time has proven that no hiatus is permanent here at The Quest for 1,000 Films, and the annual update of the TSPDT list was made available a few days ago, so it seems time to get things up and running again. The new update of the list is the "eleventh official edition", according to the introduction, which you can find, along with the entire list, at I'm happy to report that one of my favorite films, The Wicker Man, has re-entered the list this year at #645, making it this year's highest-ranking entrant onto the list. However, when I first saw The Wicker Man it was not on the list, so as a result I never wrote a post on it for the blog. Of course, one of the flaws of this blog is that the only films open for review are the ones that happen to be on the list in any given year, but even so, I would highly encourage anyone who hasn't seen The Wicker Man to do themselves a favor and do so! I would also argue that the theatrical cut (and not the "director's cut" or the recently-released "final cut") is the best and most effective version of the film, but I may be biased, as it's the first version of the film that I saw years ago. Nevertheless, The Wicker Man is a highly unique and deceptively chilling British horror film which is worth seeing at least once in any version.

One final note: as with last year, the new list has put me ahead in my count by a very small margin. This year it bumped me up by a mere two films from my previous count - from 571 to 573. So therefore my next post (which will be coming very shortly) will be #574. As always, thanks for reading, and I will continue to try to update the blog as consistently as possible.