Today the Shattered Lens wishes a happy birthday to one of our favorite people, George Miller! The doctor-turned-director began his cinematic career with 1979’s Mad Max and he’s gone on to become one of the most influential and important filmmakers out there. In honor of George Miller’s birthday, today’s scene that I love is from his debut film.
In this scene, the once upstanding policeman, Max Rockatansky (Mel Gibson), get his revenge on the last surviving member of Toecutter’s gang. Instead of merely running Johnny the Boy over, he handcuffs Johnny to a car, uses the leaking gasoline and Johnny’s lighter to create a crude timebomb, and gives Johnny a hacksaw. Johnny can either spend ten minutes cutting through the cuffs or five minutes cutting through his ankle. Max drives off and barely notices the explosion behind him. (It seems like it wouldn’t have made difference what Johnny cut through because that explosion came pretty quickly.) Max’s cold expression and the dark road in front of him indicates that Max knows what the future holds for both himself and the rest of humanity. In the scene, Max surrenders whatever traces of mercy that he had left within him. Fortunately, he gets some of his humanity back in the next movie.