Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

1985

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

Critics Consensus

Beyond Thunderdome deepens the Mad Max character without sacrificing the amazing vehicle choreography and stunts that made the originals memorable.

80%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 49

49%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 67,884
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Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome Photos

Movie Info

About 15 years after the events of Mad Max 2, nuclear war has finally destroyed what little was left of civilization. Grizzled and older, former cop Max (Mel Gibson) roams the Australian desert in a camel-drawn vehicle -- until father-and-son thieves Jebediah Sr. (Bruce Spence) and Jr. (Adam Cockburn) use their jury-rigged airplane to steal his possessions and means of transportation. Max soon winds up in Bartertown, a cesspool of post-apocalyptic capitalism powered by methane-rich pig manure and overseen by two competing overlords, Aunty Entity (Tina Turner) and Master (Angelo Rossitto), a crafty midget who rides around on the back of his hulking underling, Blaster (Paul Larsson). Seeking to re-equip himself, Max strikes a deal with the haughty Aunty to kill Blaster in ritualized combat inside Thunderdome, a giant jungle gym where Bartertown's conflicts are played out in a postmodern update of blood and circuses. Although Max manages to fell the mighty Blaster, he refuses to kill him after realizing the brute is actually a retarded boy. Aunty's henchmen murder Blaster nonetheless, then punish Max for violating the law that "Two men enter, one man leaves." Lashed to the back of a hapless pack animal and sent out into a sandstorm, a near-death Max is rescued by a band of tribal children and teens. The descendants of the victims of an airplane crash, the kids inhabit a lush valley and wait for the day when Captain Walker, the plane's pilot, will return to lead them back to civilization. Some of the children, refusing to believe that Max isn't Walker and that the glorious cities of their mythology no longer exist, set off in search of civilization on their own. Max and three tribe members must then rescue their friends from Bordertown and the clutches of Aunty Entity -- a quest that ends in a lengthy desert chase sequence that echoes the first two Mad Max films. Spence also appeared in Mad Max 2 in a different role, that of the Gyro Captain. ~ Brian J. Dillard, Rovi

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Cast

Mel Gibson
as Mad Max
Tina Turner
as Aunty Entity
Angelo Rossitto
as The Master
Adam Cockburn
as Jedediah Jr.
Bruce Spence
as Jedediah
Helen Buday
as Savannah Nix
Frank Thring
as The Collector
Paul Larsson
as The Blaster
Robert Grubb
as Pigkiller
George Spartels
as Blackfinger
Edwin Hodgeman
as Dr. Dealgood
Bob Hornery
as Waterseller
Andrew Oh
as Ton Ton Tattoo
James Robertson
as Little One
Ollie Hall
as Aunty's Guard
Susan Leonard
as Aunty's Guard
Ray Turnbull
as Aunty's Guard
Lee Rice
as Aunty's Guard
Robert Simper
as Aunty's Guard
Brian Ellison
as Aunty's Guard
Gerard Armstrong
as Aunty's Guard
Max Worrall
as Aunty's Guard
Virginia Wark
as Aunty's Guard
Geeling
as Aunty's Guard
Mark Spain
as Mr. Skyfish
Rod Zuanic
as Scrooloose
Justine Clarke
as Anna Goanna
James Wingrove
as Tubba Tintye
Adam Scougall
as Finn McCoo
Gerry D'Angelo
as The Hunter
Toni Allaylis
as Cusha, the Pregnant Girl
Travis Latter
as The Hunter
Miguel López
as The Hunter
Paul Daniel
as The Hunter
Tushka Bergen
as The Guardian
Emily Stocker
as The Guardian
Sandie Lillingston
as The Guardian
Adam Willits
as Mr. Scratch
Ben Chesterman
as The Gatherer
Liam Nikkinen
as The Gatherer
Dan Chesterman
as The Gatherer
Christopher Norton
as The Gatherer
Katharine Cullen
as The Gatherer
Heilan Robertson
as The Gatherer
Gabriel Dilworth
as The Gatherer
Hugh Sands
as The Gatherer
Rebekah Elmaloglou
as The Gatherer
Marion Sands
as The Gatherer
Shari Flood
as The Gatherer
Kate Tartar
as The Gatherer
Rachael Graham
as The Gatherer
Pega Williams
as The Gatherer
Emma Howard
as The Gatherer
Tarah Williams
as The Gatherer
Joanna McCarroll
as The Gatherer
Daniel Willits
as The Gatherer
Toby Messiter
as The Gatherer
Tonya Wright
as The Gatherer
Amanda Nikkinen
as Little One
Flynn Kenney
as Little One
Luke Panic
as Little One
William Manning
as Little One
Adam McCreadie
as Little One
Sally Morton
as Little One
Tushka Hose
as Guardian
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News & Interviews for Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

Critic Reviews for Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

All Critics (49) | Top Critics (12)

  • It's comic books in a Cuisinart, all costumes and cute monikers and no story, a sort of case history of just what's wrong with sequelitis.

    Jan 4, 2018 | Full Review…
  • This middle portion of the picture becomes dangerously preachy, but just before we and Max are bored, director Miller returns Max to his roots, a screaming chase sequence through a desertlike Australian landscape.

    May 13, 2015 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Beyond Thunderdome is the third in George Miller's Mad Max series, and it closes the trilogy like a lightning blast followed by the ominous, resonant drone of thunder.

    May 13, 2015 | Full Review…
  • Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome isn't a bad movie. It has entertaining sections, decent performances and more than a few provocative images. But it also has a major shortcoming: It's too darned sane.

    May 13, 2015 | Full Review…
  • An astonishing display of virtuoso cinema that is destined to take its place among the most vivid and freshly imagined fist-to-groin contests in the medium's history.

    Aug 25, 2008 | Full Review…
  • Miller never falls back on the formulas that have become the bane of too many recent action films, and his sustained cuts lend a clarity to the proceedings.

    Jun 10, 2008 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

  • Sep 17, 2017
    The only reason I enjoyed the first two was the violent car chases and stunts but this one completely changed the tone and feels nothing like what we are used to, The story is poor and predictable, The whole film felt camp and it didn't work one bit, There was one chase at the end but it wasn't great, The only thing this has in common with the first two is the name but apart from that it's a very big letdown.
    Jamie C Super Reviewer
  • Jul 18, 2016
    The grim tone was stripped away in favour of adventure comedy. Max now arrives at a seedy trading centre controlled by Tina Turner who could not act, then he was cast out to a town of survivors of plane crash. I enjoyed the concept but the change in tone was a really bad move. The survivors of plane crash forming a colony was a really neat concept though, I am sure Fallout series has taken that element into the game as well.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Feb 24, 2016
    Better than film history remembers, this Thunder-striking trip Beyond trades spit for polish without sacrificing the action as Mad Max takes a road toward the mainstream. In downgrading to a PG-13, this second sequel softens the character's defining hard-bitten edges but conversely deepens his complexity. Less biting and ballsy, this audience-friendly warrior road-trip troublingly makes the franchise more accessible to younger filmgoers, but winningly sports the same Mad-dening big-budget stunt spectaculars as its predecessor. In this PG-13-rated sci-fi adventure, a drifter (Gibson) exiled from the most advanced town in post-apocalyptic Australia travels with a group of abandoned children to rebel against the town's queen (Turner). Gibson makes the most out of this, his final go-round as the Road Warrior. It's only two years before Lethal Weapon will Max out his penchant for Mad rogues even more and the actor manages to show great depth and slightly less edge in this meatier exploration of the title character. Going nearly as big as her singing in Private Dancer, Tina Turner puts the Queen B in B-Movie and truly makes for a memorable villain. With a greater concentration on the road warrior women, Miller's third Max film shares some defining DNA with Fury Road. Too bad it took three decades to thread them through, but the wait proves more than worth it. Bottom line: Murtaugh and Rigged
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 27, 2016
    Not sure what happened here, but this is not the Mad Max I remember from the first two films. It makes sense though because after doing some research this wasn't originally a Mad Max film, but rather a Lord of Flies film. They changed their mind and had George Miller direct the stunts (which there's barely any compared to the first two films) and had George Ogilvie direct the actors. The first half of the film was fine, but the second half is boring, uneventful, and messy. You can tell there's two different ideas clashing because none of the second half of the film matches anything else in the franchise. I've seen people call this Mad Max for children and that is rather accurate. This just doesn't feel like it belongs with the first two at all. A sad way to end the original Mad Max series before it got rebooted.
    Josh L Super Reviewer

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