Witness it! In a surprise move, the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) announced that director George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road has been chosen as their pick for best film of the year.
The pool of film candidates for the prize all premiered after July 1, 2014, and were chosen among the 493 members of FIPRESCI. Fury Road premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in May. The list this year included the typical arthouse fare usually seen in the Federation’s finalists, including Laszlo Nemes’ Son of Saul, Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s The Assassin and Jafar Panahi’s Taxi.
But this was the first time such a high profile action movie was given the top spot. Previous winners include Boyhood, The Tree of Life, and There Will Be Blood. It’s a fitting first award for Miller’s film, which has taken in over $374 million at the worldwide box office and currently has a 97 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
It has us thinking. Does this mean Miller’s greased-up post apocalyptic masterpiece will soon have some Oscar hardware on its mantle? We say, why the hell not?
If you’re going with the clear Oscar bait favorite at this point, then look no further than Todd Haynes’ Carol, an adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s controversial mid-century novel about a 1950s housewife that falls in love with a young female department-store clerk.
But fuck that. Love stinks. You know what doesn’t? Constant vehicular carnage in a kickass action movie with a surprisingly bold feminist slant.
The Oscar race this year is basically a wasteland, and who rules the wasteland? Mad Max. All the prestige movies usually saved for December have cleared out because of Star Wars, and any other front-runner would just be there out of sheer cinematic boredom. The FIPRESCI was on to something singling out Fury Road and giving it an awards head-start for its bonkers action and unique message.
This may be nuts considering the Oscars aren’t until next February, but someone needs to say it: Mad Max: Fury Road will win Best Picture.