Mel Gibson kickstarted his movie career by battling biker baddies in the original Mad Max film; the second movie in the series also had some motorcycles, although the emphasis was more on cobbled-together offroad assault vehicles.
You could say this photo here pretty much sums up the first two movies. The third film? Well, it had Tina Turner as the wacky female leader of a bartering post and Mad Max abandoned the muscle cars in favour of a camel team, so it’s safe to say the movies lost their emphasis on horsepower.
However, there’s a new film in the series en route. Mel Gibson makes an appearance, but it seems Tom Hardy is the star, and it also seems that he’s riding a motorcycle. At least, that’s what the publicity shot indicates. This would be quite a switch, because in the first movies, Max was always battling bikers (or, as they call them in Australia, “bikies”).
Now, you might squawk that these aren’t real family-friendly motorcycle movies, not like that feel-good movie On Any Sunday, etc. etc. Sure. But when you watch the stunts in the original films and realize they performed them with minimal safety precautions, it’s impressive.
The stunt riders in the first film were actual one-percenters who took the gig because it gave them access to brand-new Kawi four-cylinders. After a few stunts, though (like the one where they ride off a bridge – not faked in the film, they actually did it, and one stuntman almost has a runaway KZ roll over him in the scene), we’re guessing the shine was long-gone from those bikes.