YMMV: Mad Max

The entire series:

The first film:

  • Alternate Character Interpretation: While most viewers take it for granted that Max's wife is mortally wounded in the end of the first film, it's actually not certain. The doctor states that she's "salvageable" in spite of her catastrophic injuries. This puts Max's Roaring Rampage of Revenge in a different light, given that he might actually have a critically injured wife still alive and counting on him to survive. The sequels wipe this away by making Max's entire family unambiguously dead, giving him truly nothing to lose. And of course the fact that the bikers who killed his family were complete scum.
  • Anti-Climax Boss: The Toecutter, as all it takes to finish him off is chase him down until he gets run over by a truck.
  • Complete Monster: The Toe-Cutter and his gang. Seriously, you cannot feel bad for these guys when Max starts killing them. They rape and/or terrorize anyone who crosses their path, they burn a man alive inside his car, they hang a dog after mutilating it and then they run down a helpless woman and her baby son. When Max starts taking them down you have to cheer.
  • Do Not Do This Cool Thing: The film was meant to show the dangers of reckless driving.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Max suffering a nervous breakdown from the tragedy in his life becomes harder to watch in light of Mel Gibson's own real life personal problems.
    • Plus his speech about how worried he is about becoming just as bad as the criminals he fights.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • Vindicated by History: With the success of its sequels, Mad Max has been hailed as a sci-fi classic and a major example of what can be done on a low budget if the film crew is talented enough.