Mad Max Analysis

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The film Mad Max: Fury Road (George Miller, 2015) explores a dystopia created by patriarchal dominance and gender inequality. However, it shifts the dystopian outlook by destroying the patriarch Immortan Joe thus allowing it to transform into, as Taylor Boulware states, a ‘feminist Utopia.’ The way this is done in Mad Max is through the empowerment of female characters through reversal of gender roles. Also, the ‘feminist Utopia’ in Mad Max is like Sarah Scott’s Millenium Hall – such as exclusion of most males and valuing female philanthropy. I am going to use the similarities between the two to showcase how Mad Max fits into the Utopian genre.
Furiosa subverts gender norms to an extreme and portrays a utopian image of women – visually she is the antithesis of Immortan Joe’s wives who have been made to obey the enforced standards for women in the film. They juxtapose each other starkly when they are in the same shot, as seen in figure 1, with the light and dark colours. The whiteness of the wives’ clothes that flow in the wind show a projected sense of purity which they are meant to abide by, whereas, Furiosa is harsh and dark which shows her rebellion. The lack of hair is significant since, traditionally, long hair is prized on females, however, Furiosa adopts a conventionally masculine haircut. This is important as she is transcending gender boundaries and not restricting herself to the patriarchy’s expectations – she is both masculine and feminine. This contrast
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