. With its wild action sequences, bloodthirsty gangs and desolate Australian outback setting, “Mad Max” has pioneered the post-apocalyptic genre.
Directed by George Miller, a young Mel Gibson stars in the title role as “Mad” Max Rockatansky, an Australian police officer who sets out to restore some semblance of law and order in a world gone mad. At some point in the future, Australian society has collapsed, and deranged biker gangs seek to make havoc whenever they can. When Max’s family is killed as revenge for the death of a gang leader, he seeks out vengeance on his own and refuses to let anything stop him.
Though filmed on a low budget, Mad Max became a wild cult hit, to the point that it was the most profitable film ever for two entire decades, making $100 million worldwide, all from a budget of AUD 400,000.
Spawning a franchise, Mad Max was followed up by three sequels; “Mad Max: The Road Warrior” in 1981, which served as a proper introduction of the series to US audiences, and “Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome” in 1985. A fourth Mad Max film had been in development limbo for some time, until the release of 2015’s “Mad Max: Fury Road,” a sequel/reboot which won six Oscars, proving the incredible lasting appeal of a revolutionary franchise that all started with a low-budget Australian film.
The 39th Cairo International Film Festival runs from Tuesday November 21 until Thursday November 30.