The best way to describe 2010's “Mad Max: Fury Road” is a hard rock solo with the amp turned up to 11. Director George Miller returned to the post apocalyptic landscapes he pioneered with the Mad Max franchise back in the 1970s and brings a dazzling mixture of practical stunts and incredible design for this relatively simple story. Furiousa (Charlize Theron) is warlord Immortal Joe's best driver. On a gasoline run to the obviously titled Gas Town, she betrays him to save the life of his five wives. Mad Max (Tom hardy) is more or less a passenger in this story and ultimately lacks any character depth. Easily one of the greatest action films ever made, you come for that and stay for Theron's performance which drives the film.
With digital media and online distribution becoming the hot thing, it was inevitable that we would get lesser quality films rushed onto platforms and 2018's “Wastelander” is a prime example. What would have once been received as an “Indie film” that was shot low budget by a bunch of guys with a dollar and a dream, now gets a worldwide release, despite the gigantic plot holes, terrible dialogue, bad audio and lack of a director of photography. Our lead actor (Brendan Guy Murphy) is fine and looks the part of the title character, but he’s not given much to do besides walk around in a helmet (everyone wears helmets for some reason) while trying to unravel the mystery of Eden, in a plot that really goes nowhere. Clearly a lot of work went into the costumes and vehicles design, but in the end, the project as a whole is let down by what is obviously an inexperienced writer/director/editor, who valued aesthetics over an actual polished script.
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road