#OscarsSoBad

Co roku wyczekujemy nominacji do Oscarów jak manny z nieba, licząc na to, że nasze typy zostaną nagrodzone. Odnoszę jednak wrażenie, że każde kolejne rozdanie przynosi mi coraz więcej zawodów. Ogłoszone we wtorek rano kandydatury za 2016 rok przeszły moje najśmielsze oczekiwania. Akademia ośmieszyła się w sposób piękny – pozwólcie zatem, że przybliżę nieco rozmiary tych tragicznych wyborów.

Najlepsi czy “najśredniejsi”?

2016 rok nie rozpieszczał widzów mainstreamowego kina. I stąd zapewne fakt, że pośród nominowanych do najlepszych filmów roku znalazło się chociażby miejsce dla średniaka zatytułowanego Lion. Droga do domu. Film Gartha Daviesa to schematycznie opowiedziana, banalna historia, która nie pozostawia widza z gonitwą myśli w głowie i sercem szamoczącym się wściekle od nadmiaru emocji. Ot, taki ckliwy dramat. Nie zachwyca także wybór równie przeciętnego, nieco przegadanego Fences z Denzelem Washingtonem w roli głównej, ani obecność nierównego dramatu Przełęcz ocalałych. To tytuły, które z powodzeniem można było pominąć w zestawieniu pretendentów do najważniejszej (teoretycznie) nagrody filmowej roku.

A kogo w to miejsce można było wrzucić? Nikt nie obraziłby się chyba za nominację dla Zwierząt nocy Toma Forda. Thriller znanego projektanta mody był zaskakująco kompleksowym i artystycznie nakręconym filmem. Kilka nominacji do Złotych Globów, świetna muzyka i zdjęcia, wybitne role – Akademia postanowiła zaś docenić jedynie Michaela Shannona, który statuetki i tak nie dostanie. Ubolewam również nad nieobecnością Patersona Jima Jarmuscha, chociaż tej nominacji nie spodziewałem się nawet w najskrytszych marzeniach. I tak, mogło być gorzej – nominacja do Oscara mogła przypaść Batman vs Superman.

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Pasażerowie oraz Legion Samobójców – czy ja śnię?

Wiele osób wypomina mi, że mam naturę hejtera. I owszem, bywam nieco krytyczny i stawiam wysoko poprzeczkę – w przeciwieństwie do Akademii. Ale jak wysoce wybredny bym nie był, to jest prawdziwa porażka, że dwie katastrofalne wprost wtopy otrzymują nominacje – jakiekolwiek. Trudno bowiem przeboleć fakt, że filmu pokroju Lobster, Captain Fantastic i Zwierzęta nocy, mają tyle samo nominacji co Legion Samobójców. Klękajcie narody.

Oczywiście, można użyć argumentu, że to nominacje w najmniej istotnych kategoriach – przynajmniej w przypadku “crap festu” z pół-nagą Margot Robbie. Bowiem nominacja w kategorii “best makeup and hairstyling” nie należy do najbardziej prestiżowych. Ale nie zmienia to jednak jednego, arcy-istotnego faktu – LEGION SAMOBÓJCÓW MA NA KONCIE NOMINACJĘ DO OSCARA.

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Gdzie się podziały… tamte emocje…

Nominacje potwierdziły także smutną tezę, że przereklamowany do granic możliwości, ukochany i wychuchany La La Land zgarnie wszystko. Akademia bardzo chciała nas o tym zapewnić, dając filmowi Chazelle’a nawet dwie nominacje w kategorii najlepszej piosenki. Takie to musicalowanie ładne i piosenki takie ładne, i wszystko takie ładne – dajmy dwie nominacje. Żeby przypadkiem ktoś nie pomyślał, że możemy złotą statuetkę dać komuś innemu.

Moim cichym faworytem pozostaje nadal Moonlight. Nawet w obliczu zastraszającej przewagi musicalu z Ryanem Goslingiem i Emmą Stone. Bowiem Moonlight to kino, do którego chce się wracać. Znakomicie nakręcony, porywający dramat Barry’ego Jenkinsa uderza w widza z ogromną siłą. I odsuwając na bok całą skretyniałą konwersację dotyczącą koloru skóry reżysera, głównego bohatera i zastępcy kierownika planu – to właśnie Moonlight powinien zgarnąć najważniejsze nagrody.

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Jak do tego doszło, czyli zagubiony racjonalizm

Nietrudno jednak zrozumieć, dlaczego Akademia tak bezmyślnie poprzyznawała swoje nominacje. Ostatnie lata nie były łatwe dla tych biednych, zdziadziałych zjadaczy kina. Zarzucano im skrajny rasizm, co urosło do rangi globalnego zjawiska jednoczącego się pod banderą “#OscarsSoWhite”. Były również po drodze bojkoty samej gali, były filmy zbrodniczo pokrzywdzone z irracjonalnych powodów – jak zeszłoroczny dramat Beasts Of No Nation, który skreślono z uwagi na logo Netflixa przy nazwie producenta.

Akademia trzymała się jednak pewnych reguł. Usuwając w cień filmy niszowe i artystyczne, doceniała filmy dobre i zrozumiałe dla szerszej widowni. Zeszłoroczną galę zdominował przecież Mad Max, który do głębokich i ambitnych dzieł nie należał. Nie była to jednak nachalna próba podlizania się publice – film Millera był po prostu zbyt dobry, by go pominąć. A najważniejsze statuetki powędrowały do innych tytułów – równie przekonywujących.

W tym roku Akademia poszła niestety o krok za daleko. Próbując być trendy, udowadniając, że rozumieją zasady rządzące nowoczesnym kinem, dokonali kilku katastrofalnych i zwyczajnie ośmieszających wyborów. Bowiem jaki racjonalnie myślący kinoman stwierdziłby, że muzyka z filmu Pasażerowie ma więcej gracji i kreatywności niż ścieżka do Człowieka-Scyzoryka? Albo przytaknąłby temu, że Amy Adams nie zasłużyła na swoją nominację (dwie genialne role w jednym roku…)? Pewnie żaden.

Są pewne nominacje, które mimo wszystko cieszą. Akademia bardzo doceniła klimatyczny neo-western Aż do piekła, który zgarnął aż 4 nominacje – to chyba moje największe zaskoczenie. Ogromną radość sprawiła mi także nominacja dla szwajcarskiej animacji Nazywam się Cukinia. Są to jednak złote rybki wyłowione spośród śniętych.

Oscary są ble, ale i tak je kochamy

Co roku powtarzamy wszyscy, że Oscary nas nie obchodzą. Że to masońska grupa trzymająca władzę, z zatwardziałymi poglądami, która poklepuje się nawzajem po ramieniu co roku, ze zgryźliwym uśmiechem. Mimo tej całej niechęci, dyskutujemy. O wygranych i przegranych, o najgorszych wyborach i sukniach, pięknych gwiazdach i przemowach, które ćwiczą przed lustrem. A wszystkim tym, których boli – tak jak mnie – nominacja dla Legionu Samobójców, mam jedno do powiedzenia: Spójrzcie na zdjęcie poniżej.

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Złote Globy 2017 rozdane! / The winners of the Golden Globes 2017!

Złote Globy rozdane – jesteśmy zatem rozeznani z tym, czego można spodziewać się po zbliżającej się gali Oscarów. Stosunkowo niewiele zaskoczeń pojawiło się w zestawieniu zwycięzców. Zgodnie z typowaniami wielu krytyków, La La Land Damiena Chazelle’a zgarnął kilka statuetek – w tym Ryan Gosling za najlepszą rolę w komedii lub musicalu, Damien Chazelle za reżyserię oraz Justin Hurwitz za ścieżkę dźwiękową. Najlepszym filmem dramatycznym został Moonlight, zaś zgodnie z przewidywaniami, La La Land to najlepsza komedia lub musical. Mnie bardzo cieszy nagroda dla Aarona Taylora-Johnsona za fenomenalną kreację w Zwierzętach nocy.

Zaskoczeniem jest z pewnością statuetka dla Toma Hiddllestone’a za rolę w serialu Night Manager. W tej kategorii swoistym pewniakiem był Courtney B. Vance, który wcielił się w postać obrońcy O.J. Simpsona w American Crime Story. Nie zmienia to jednak faktu, że serial HBO zgarnął dwie pozostałe nagrody – najlepszy serial or najlepsza rola kobieca (Sarah Paulson). Dużym szokiem jest także statuetka dla Netflixowego The Crown, którego z pewnością nie upatrywano w gronie faworytów.

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The Golden Globes ceremony has ended – we already know what to expect from the upcoming Oscars. There isn’t many surprises though. As many critics predicted, La La Land by Damien Chazelle has been the big winner of the night – it’s the best comedy or musical of the year, but the awards has been also given to Ryan Gosling and two for ustin Hurwitz (composer of the soundtrack). The best director award did go to Damien Chazelle, whilst Moonlight has ben the best drama of the year. I was personally very happy with the award for the supporting actor, that happened to land in Aaron’s Johnson-Taylor hands.

More surprises happened among the TV series. Tom Hiddleston has beaten Courtney B.Vance in the race for the leading role in a short TV series, whilst the best TV drama is The Crown by Netflix. However, still the biggest winner is The People VS O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, which won the award for the best short TV series and the best leading actress role, given to Sarah Paulson.

Poniżej zwycięzcy (winners below):

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television – Hugh Laurie

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television – Olivia Colman

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy – Trace Ellis Rose

Best Performance by an Actor In A Television Series – Drama – Billy Bob Thornton

Best Performance by an Actress In A Television Series – Drama – Claire Foy

Best Performance by an Actor in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television – Tom Hiddleston

Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television – Sarah Paulson

Best Television Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television – The People VS O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy – Atlanta

Best Television Series – Drama – The Crown

Best Original Song – Motion Picture – City of Stars by Justin Hurwitz

Best Original Score – Motion Picture – Justin Hurwitz

Best Motion Picture – Foreign Language – Elle

Best Motion Picture – Animated – Zootopia

Best Screenplay – Motion Picture – Damien Chazelle

Best direction – Motion Picture – Damien Chazelle

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in any Motion Picture – Aaron Taylor-Johnson

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in any Motion Picture – Viola Davis

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy – Ryan Gosling

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy – Emma Stone

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama – Casey Affleck

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama – Isabelle Huppert

Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy – La La Land

Best Motion Picture – Drama – Moonlight

Co sądzicie o zwycięzcach? Zasłużeni czy nie? Napiszcie w komentarzach 🙂

Let me know what you think about the winners!

5 Best &5 Worst Movies of 2016 – So Far

Half of the year on the clock – time for a recap of what has 2016 brought so far.

BEST OF 2016 SO FAR

It’s almost half of the year behind our backs and it’s the right moment to reflect on what we’ve seen so far in 2016. This list is made of movies that were given the distribution in the cinemas in Poland.

5. El Clan

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The killer family from Buenos Aires is the topic of Pablo Trapero’s thriller, which was last year’s Oscar candidate from Argentina. El Clan discovers very dark corners of human nature, but doing so in a rather unheard-of manner – the soundtrack, with its lively rock and roll and the blooming city both create a vivid contradiction to what actually happens in the titular clan’s household. Finally, the film features an extremely cherished performance of Guillermo Francella as the malefic Arquimedes Puccio – head of the sociopathic gang.

Click here for review.

UMP Grade: 41/50

4. Deadpool

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Ryan Reynolds fought for bringing Deadpool to the big screen for over 10 ten years and the final outcome of this heroic struggle was an unprecedented victory. The foul-mouthed, lewd superhero throws punchlines in all directions – he hammers Hugh Jackman, the creators of the film and even the audience too. The film itself is a parade of hysterically funny, but vulgar jokes, it’s action-packed, but most of all – it’s a great satire regarding the modern trend of superhero-themed movies that came like an avalanche.

Click here for review.

UMP Grade: 39/50

3. Cloverfield Lane 10

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Cloverfield Lane 10 received great reviews upon its release and this hyped me up pretty good for the film. The story of three people shut in an underground shelter is a riveting thriller, delivering a sort of detective engagement for the viewer, with a nagging question hanging in the air – is the alleged alien invasion real? Fantastic score, tremendous acting by John Goodman and a fun-to-follow plot make up for one of the best movies of 2016 so far.

Click here for review.

UMP Grade: 42/50

2. Lobster

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Intelligent, provoking in a smart manner and truly heart-wrenching – the new feature of former Palme d’Or winner Lantzimos is a creepy vision of a dysutopian society, where people are paired up based on the “mutualities” between them. The drama swings from being a sarcastic commentary upon modern brainwashing regarding any close relationships (how we are slowly becoming unable to feel etc.) to a full-blown crime thriller. The rollecoaster is guaranteed – The Lobster is worth giving it a try.

Click here for review.

UMP Grade: 40/50

1. Son of Saul

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The Hungarian winner of an Oscar this year was by far the best feature of the year to me. Mind-blowingly raw, hermetic and almost unbearably real, Son of Saul is a sad tribute to the Auschwitz prisoners and atrocities that took place there. It was a hard experience to go through really, but a praiseworthy effort too. And if you didn’t have the opportunity to see it, take the first chance to make up for it.

Click here for review.

Click here for an article about a meeting with Geza Rohrig – titular Saul (in Polish).

UMP Grade: 47.5/50

Honorable mentions: Triple 9 (review here), Carol (review here).

WORST OF 2016 SO FAR

Well, let’sa move to the worst things – the ones that I wish I skipped without wasting my time.

5. Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice

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With pain in my heart, I admit that this ill-epic film ended up being a complete disaster. It’s truly incredible how awful this new Batman installment was, but hopefully – the lesson will be learned. The pitiful dialogues, wooden acting by both Affleck and Cavill, over-the-top Eisenberg, CGI so heavily used that makes you wonder whether the set ever left the studio – Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice in a nuthsell. And in all that mess, Hans Zimmer managed to compose an actually “listeningable” soundtrack.

UMP Grade: 24/50

4. The Boss

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This needs to be stated out loud – Mellisa McCarthy is not even remotely funny. If anyone had doubts about that, that might be the only reason to watch The Boss. Directed by her husband, the film focuses on Michelle, who finishes doing her sentence and struggles to start living again. What you can expect from such a plot – it happens. Let that be enough discouragement guys – let’s not waste time on mumblings of a chubby person “making fun” of the fact that she’s chubby. Someone should have seen Eddie Murphy’s Norbit before directing The Boss really.

UMP Grade: 15/50

3. Summer Camp

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How about another unnecesary zombie horror that brings absolutely nothing to the genre, apart from repeating the old patterns of cheap jump scares and painfully predictable plot? Well, the problem with Summer Camp is that it really involves so much cliche that in the end one can ask a question – who is this film marketed at? The story of Americans visiting Europe for some ridiculous reasons was worked out many times, recycled and shown over again – so why? Honestly, I have no idea, but even for the horror genre fans (I, myself, am being one) – avoid this garbage from a distance.

UMP Grade: 13.5/50

2. Pitbull: Nowe Porządki

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The Polish police and mafia never looked more hysterical than in this over-the-top portrayal directed by Patryk Vega, where Majami – a young, bold officer – gets involved in a dangerous race against the mob’s head – Babcia. Apart from awful acting and hilariously bad dialogues, the film rreaches unbelievable levels of absurd – Warsaw seems to be a capital, where in each corner you can lose your life and the only people you meet are a) whores, b) half-brains, c) cops, d) gangsters or e) some other random people. Doesn’t sound like the city I live in to be honest.

Click here for review (in Polish).

UMP Grade: 14/50

1. Hardcore Henry

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Hollywood will never learn that game adaptions are in a vast majority piles of rubbish, but instead of acquiring this knowledge, a new idea was born, which is even worse. Hardcore Henry is shot entirely from the first person perspective, which from the scratch sounds like a terrible idea – add to it unbearable pace, loose plot and a bunch of no-names, who pretend to enjoy playing in this garbage. And this is basically what you can get from this movie. Utterly bad trash that won’t probably be beaten in the second half of the year.

UMP Grade: 9/50

(Un)Honorable Mention: Robinson Cruzoe.

In a nutshell – 88th Ceremony of the Oscars

My recap of the last night’s big-time ceremony – Oscars!

I needed to stay up until 6 a.m. and I am really not sure, whether it was worth it entirely. How to sum it all up? Splendor, glory, fancy people, expensive clothes, red carpet and #OscarsSoWhite all over it – welcome to my recap of the 88th ceremony of the Oscars.

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Oscars are all about equality nowadays 

I will avoid commenting upon the so-called Red Carpet showing off, which certainly could be the interest of fashion bloggers, but not me. The ceremony of 88th Oscars has opened with Chris Rock’s heavy punchline artillery, which casted a long shadow on the entire event. Rock didn’t halt himself, shooting in all directions, bearing in mind the #OscarsSoWhite drama, which emerged after the noms were announced. So, we’ve heard some harsh comments on Jada Pinkett-Smith’s boycott and a bit of cry out for Michael B. Jordan right from the start. The “black community” must have felt “tingled” several times, when the Oscars’ host was bashing the Academy’s snubs (mainly Straight Outta Compton and Creed) or firing lines like “Hollywood is sorority racist”. Even though it felt really staged, Academy needed to swallow its pride and it still kind of shocked me – the freedom given to Chris Rock was praiseworthy. He even managed to make an important point somewhere between the lines that the point of this whole “White People Choice Awards” is the need for equal chances for all kinds of actors.

I also felt happy that some lesser topics were smartly weaved into the show. I’m glad that Bond-too-street case was brought to the light again, being an aftermath of the lack of nomination for Idris Elba for his tremendous job in Beasts of No Nation. I was charmed by the fact that Sacha Baron Cohen made a comeback of his iconic Ali G, with some splendid one-liners: “I is here representing all of them that’s been overlooked – Will Smith. Idris Elbow. And, of course, that amazing black bloke from Star Wars… Darth Vader.”

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The key word to the ceremony was predictability

Sadly, the 88th Oscars ceremony’s results were pretentious and highly predictable. In all its splendor, among the burning comments from Chris Rock, the Academy didn’t manage to really shock. The screenplay winners didn’t come as a surprise – Spotlight was a frontrunner, even though various awards could indicate otherwise before the Oscars. The Big Short was no revelation too. The absolute hegemony of Mad Max: Fury Road in visual and sound categories was also rather pretentious, showing that the Academy didn’t want to make more enemies worldwide – Miller’s film was a safe bet to win them, but still was left form the major competitions. Notwithstanding this fact, the only surprise could be the Special Effects category and its winner, Ex Machina – a triumph of independent cinema at its finest. Glad it happened.

Pixar won the Best Animated Feature, which was eve safer than the visual Oscars for Mad Max: Fury Road. My heart was torn apart as I heard that the Cinematography award was given to Emmanuel Lubezki – again. Roger Deakins’ stunning, exhilarating work on Sicario was snubbed off, but well – I could see that coming. A sort of surprise was Mark Rylance, who seems to be the only real “unpredictability” factor in the entire show. Still, with all the love for Stallone was given for Creed – Rylance was the only good thing about Bridge of Spies, the guy earned it. Contrary to Alicia Vikander, who received the Oscar for a role, which was equally weak as Lawrence’s performance in Joy. Well…

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There were some low points

The most terrible choice of the Academy was Sam Smith’s whining song for Spectre, which somehow gained him an Oscar. Apparently, his speech, which was all about “hey, I’m gay and I have an Oscar!” was pitiful and cringeworthy and marked one of the lowest points of the ceremony. We all get it – you’re gay. Nothing to be ashamed off and nothing to brag about. Why to bring it on?

Another weird moment for me was the appearance of C3PO, R2D2 and BB8, which stormed into the stage somewhere in between. It was supposed to be a funny break, but ended up rather confusing. Especially considering the fact, that many people felt confident about the Special Effects Oscar for Star Wars: Force Awakens. Well, Ex Machina, you badass!

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Winners of the night

Another great winner of the night was obviously the director of The Revenant, Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu. There was a slight chance that the Mexican director, who emerges as the most overrated, self-pretentious filmmaker in the modern history, could be beaten by Tom McCarthy, but it all came down to nothing – the Academy, for some unknown reason, is in love with Innaritu. And here’s some funny reaction of Pan’s Labirynth director, Guillermo Del Toro, just when the Oscar landed in his colleague’s hands.

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Finally, we have reached the two most important moments of the evening. The Internet went crazy, ardent fans could not stop the cries and 9gagers immediately got down to manufacturing plethora of memes – Leonardo DiCaprio won an Oscar. Arguably, role of Mr. Glass in The Revenant was not his career’s best, but let’s be honest – could we imagine a different scenario? The only true contender was Michael Fassbender, but Steve Jobs was a fatal flop. Nevertheless, none of us can say again that we have as many Oscars as Leo. Well, no more of that ego boost guys.

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The last category’s winner, named the best film of the last year, was McCarthy’s Spotlight. And I am proud to say that it was my guess from the beginning of the Oscar race. A safe choice, proving that the key to 88th ceremony was predictability. And just a few words on this whole #OscarsSoWhite shitstorm – filmmakers are all artists, no matter where they are from or what do they represent. And this whole whining about the white people dominance – someone apparently did forget what happened with Steve McQueen’s 12 years a Slave. The Oscars should be promoting art, not equality, climate change or LGBT situation. We’re missing a point I believe.

Here’s the full list of the winners:

Picture: Spotlight

Actor in the leading role: Leonardo DiCaprio

Actress in the leading role: Brie Larson

Director: Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu

Supporting Actress: Alicia Vikander

Supporting Actor: Mark Rylance

Animated Feature: Inside Out

Original Screenplay: Spotlight

Adapted Screenplay: Big Short

Foreign Language Film: Son of Saul

Animated Short: The Bear Story

Live Action Short: Stutterer

Documentary: Amy

Documentary Short: A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness

Cinematography: Emmanuel Lubezki

Visual Effects: Ex Machina

Makeup: Mad Max

Film editing: Mad Max

Costume Design: Mad Max

Sound mixing: Mad Max

Original Song: Sam Smith

Production Design: Mad Max

Sound editing: Mad Max

Score: Ennio Morricone