In my head lives a serious feminist. She comes now and then, offers groundbreaking gyaan to people, changes their lives and goes back inside. She is an older feminist, means she’s been here longer. She was shamed into absence by the happier and more down to earth feminist who took charge only recently. So when I was watching Mad Max and dealing with wow after wow, I was also dealing with a personal dilemma. Which of my feminists were purring loudly in response to the movie?
Some fans are shitting all over the movie, some are holding it with superb regard yet whispering to each other ‘Let’s not be in a hurry and call it a feminist movie yet’. I don’t know if it’s a feminist movie. I am happy knowing that for once, both my feminists seemed to agree on having fun.
I want to take a step further here and call it a fun movie. No, I haven’t watched its Mel Gibson prequel, and yes, this movie is so kickass, I doubt I’ll have badass fun with the other. Mad Max kicks all action hero movies’ asses. This is the movie you want to watch if you flung objects at the CIA’s chief in X Men when he said that there is a reason why the CIA is no place for women. Screw your CIA, Mad Max has super hot hero hesitating to operate big gun when super hot heroine stands patiently behind him. Two shots have been fired — last one remaining, and the enemy is at the gates. So what does he do? Yes, he passes her the gun and goes away.
The movie begins the way all post apocalyptic movies do. In a desert. In a city that has become a desert. Max stamps a chameleon and eats it. Next thing you know, he is hunted by war boys who then take him to their home. Scenes later, Charlize Theron is shown driving a truck, a big muscular truck. One you think came out when Arnold Schwarzenegger and Kati Luoto did it.
Theron is escape rani. She is leading away the warlord’s wives. Two of whom are pregnant. Here’s the thing about pregnant women. Most male filmmakers are shit scared about doing anything with pregnant women. And that’s why it was interesting to finally see a movie that flings pretty pregnant woman under some massive truck. This was when I heard both the feminists in my head roar with happiness. Why am I happy about pregnant women dying in the movie? They aren’t treated with ulterior patronizing nonsense. She died because she was doing circus on the sides of the truck that Theron was driving. She died trying to rescue her team. So it’s ok if she was pregnant and got flung under the truck. I am not putting pressure on action movie pregnant women characters to do stunts. And it’s ok if I do, because it’s a movie. All I am saying is that here’s another role that didn’t have a man– that had a pregnant woman do it.
It is refreshing to see a pregnant woman doing unpregnanty things, is all. The other fun thing is grandma motor bikers, baby. It’s still quite something to see middle aged female conductors and auto drivers in Bengaluru. So when you watch 5 wrinkled and kickass grannies, one of whom looks like the cute granny from Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries, all of them riding monster motor bikes, you may want to laugh at Nolan and his ‘Here Cat Woman, stop making a fuss. You can ride the Bat Mobile for 2 min’