Why mysteries in 'Mad Max' can be satisfying
"Mad Max" has very little exposition, and audiences aren't mad about it. What makes a film successful when it doesn't give too much backstory?
[Note: Spoilers ahead. Sort of]
"Mad Max: Fury Road" grabbed $32 million over Memorial Day weekend. The film is a hit with fans, but there's very little explanation of the world.
How did Furiosa lose her arm? What exactly happened to Max's family? What's up with the guy playing the fire guitar?
Audiences never get those answers, nor do they really care: the movie has a 98 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Some movies do a deft job at being very light on exposition, forcing audiences to fill in the blanks while putting a spotlight on the action.
Jack Epps Jr, chair of the screenwriting program at USC, says this will happen more and more as the foreign box office for Hollywood grows – audiences don't like backstory told through subtitles, so it's better to capture them through visuals and effects.