In case you weren't watching the 88th Annual Academy Awards last night, here's what you (as a car culture devotee) really need to know. Mad Max: Fury Road cleaned up, winning six Oscars on ten nominations. That's rather incredible if you dismiss Fury Road as one long car chase populated by psychopaths obsessed with gasoline and water, draining each other for blood, rife with explosions and crossbows and flame-spewing guitars.

France Cannes Mad Max Photo Call

I say all that with a wink. Still with me? You've watched it; it's much, much more complicated than my tongue-in-cheek, reductionist assessment makes it out to be. Those incredible stunts were as real as they could safely be because director George Miller is as suspicious of CGI as his characters are of, well, everything. Charlize Theron's Imperator Furiosa stole the show, a powerful and nuanced character, never objectified in the film, whose missing arm led to exactly zero expository dialogue and never served as a prop or plot device. Tom Hardy's reptilian growl and Hugh Keays-Byrne's (the Toecutter!) menacing bulk each deserve more space than I have to do justice.

Sadly, Theron wasn't nominated at all. And despite the sheer number of nominations and awards, some Mad Max fans are surely disappointed that the majority of them were for backstage roles – still well-deserved and hard-won recognition of very important filmmaking work, to be sure. Best Picture went to Spotlight, Best Actor to Leonardo DiCaprio in The Revenant, and Best Actress to Brie Larson in Room.

Meanwhile, here is the full list of awards Mad Max won, and its other nominations.

  • Costume Design
  • Film Editing
  • Makeup and Hairstyling
  • Production Design
  • Sound Editing
  • Sound Mixing

  • Best Picture
  • Cinematography
  • Directing
  • Visual Effects

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