When you first watch Mad Max: Fury Road, one of the things you notice immediately are the vibrant orange and teal colors that saturate almost every frame of the film. But, it’s not always the way the film was intended. Director George Miller said they played with the saturation level during post-production, going back and forth between completely draining all the color and really cranking up the colors, eventually deciding on the latter. Miller even went so far as to say that he felt the “best version” of Mad Max: Fury Road was in black and white. There were rumors of a black and white version of the film being included on the Blu-ray, but that never happened. Luckily, a film student made his own version: Mad Max: Black & Chrome.
While discussing Fury Road with director Edgar Wright back in May, Miller said:
One thing I’ve noticed is that the default position for everyone is to de-saturate post-apocalyptic movies. There’s only two ways to go, make them black and white — the best version of this movie is black and white, but people reserve that for art movies now. The other version is to really go all-out on the color. The usual teal and orange thing? That’s all the colors we had to work with. The desert’s orange and the sky is teal, and we either could de-saturate it, or crank it up, to differentiate the movie. Plus, it can get really tiring watching this dull, de-saturated color, unless you go all the way out and make it black and white.
That same month, Slashfilm spoke with Miller who told them “he has demanded a black and white version of Fury Road for the Blu-ray, and that version of the film will feature an option to hear just the isolated score as the only soundtrack.”
With that Blu-ray version never materializing, one fan anonymously uploaded a version of Mad Max: Fury Road, almost exactly how Miller described it, to Vimeo so we can all see what it’s like.
Frankly, it’s…OK. I get what Miller was talking about in his original quotes, but I think a transfer like this really needs the director working on it. Film student or not, we can’t imagine the same amount of time and care was put into this that Miller would’ve put into a proper Blu-ray release. Mad Max: Fury Road is one of the best movies of the year so far, and we’re just not sure this version adds much to the viewing experience. An interesting art experiment, sure, but not something we can recommend watching in lieu of the original.
What do you think? Take a look above and let us know in the comments.