All 4 ‘Mad Max’ Movies in Order (Including Furiousa)

mad max movies in order

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The ‘Mad Max’ franchise is one of the most popular post-apocalyptic franchises in the history of cinema. What started with a single movie released in 1979 soon became a phenomenon according to which numerous movies will be modeled and inspired. Even 44 years after the release of the first installment, the ‘Mad Max’ franchise keeps on expanding and currently has four movies with two additional on the way; let’s see how to watch them in order.

Editor’s Note: This watch order was updated in December 2023 to include the latest news regarding the ‘Mad Max’ franchise.

All 4 ‘Mad Max’ movies in release date order

The thing is, when ‘Mad Max’ was first released, the movie received generally mixed reviews due to its somewhat low-budget production and a lack of a clear and coherent storyline. But, eventually, it gained cult status among the general population, entering the mainstream and pop culture. This is what kept the franchise going for more than 40 years. Here’s the release date order of all installments, including future releases.

  1. ‘Mad Max’ (1979)
  2. ‘Mad Max 2’ (1981)
  3. ‘Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome’ (1985)
  4. ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ (2015)
  5. ‘Furiousa: A Mad Max Saga’ (May 4, 2024)
  6. ‘Mad Max: The Wasteland’ (TBA)

Are all ‘Mad Max’ movies connected? What’s the best way to watch them?

The thing is, even though each ‘Mad Max’ movie can be watched as a standalone and you will be able to understand it, the movies are connected and follow the same protagonist across different points in time while the civilization has already fallen. The movies that came out after ‘Mad Max’ (1979) are sequels, but not direct ones. Of course, ‘Furiosa’, bound to be released in 2024, is a prequel to ‘Fury Road,’ but it’s also a spinoff, so we can’t say that it’s a direct prequel as well.

In any case, if you watch the movies in release date order, you can’t really go wrong since an explicit timeline was never referenced.


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All ‘Mad Max’ movies in chronological order

Now that we’ve covered that the chronology of the ‘Mad Max’ movies is not exactly clear, we know that the original release date order followed the timeline and unfolding of the events. This was until ‘Furiosa’ was announced, which was officially labeled as a prequel so the current chronological order of the ‘Mad Max’ franchise goes as follows:

  1. ‘Mad Max’ (1979)
  2. ‘Mad Max 2’ (1981)
  3. ‘Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome’ (1985)
  4. ‘Furiousa: A Mad Max Saga’ (May 4, 2024)
  5. ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ (2015)
  6. ‘Mad Max: The Wasteland’ (TBA)

Now that you have the short version of the chronology, let’s dig into more details. The first movie released ‘Mad Max’ obviously takes place sometime in the 80’s due to the fact that the movie begins with ‘A few years from now.’ Even though the society is on the verge of collapse, Australia is still somewhat standing; there are stores, Max’s family is still able to go on a vacation (which ends tragically, however), and the ecocide still hasn’t completely taken place. So, the first movie is the earliest point in the franchise and a prelude to what is to come.

‘Mad Max 2’ takes place about three years after the end of the first movie, and we can see that society has further degenerated. ‘Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome’ is set approximately 15 years after ‘Mad Max 2,’ indicated by a marking near a crashed airplane as Captain Walker departed to seek help in 1999. Now ‘Fury Road’ is supposed to go next, but ‘Furiosa’ further complicates things.

‘Furiosa’ is a prequel that is set to follow Charlize Theron’s character that we met in ‘Fury Road’ but before she became an Imperator for Immortan Joe, and to make matters even more complicated, the story will span several decades, but one thing is clear that it is supposed to take place after the events of ‘Beyond Thunderdome’ but before ‘Fury Road.’

The story of ‘Fury Road,’ on the other hand, is supposed to take place 3 or 4 decades after the first movie, but this doesn’t make sense for obvious reasons due to Max not being immortal but still being approximately the same age as he was in the original trilogy. In the introduction of ‘Mad Max: Fury Road,’ Max has a tattoo marking 12,045 days or 33 years since the presumed apocalypse, which means that something along the line was retconned as Hardy’s Mad Max would have been born when the original Apocalypse struck.

As far as ‘Mad Max: Wasteland’ goes, virtually nothing is known about the movie except for the fact that it’s going to be a sequel to ‘Fury Road’ and hence will take place after it.

Where to watch the above-mentioned movies?

The first movie in the franchise, released in 1979, can be streamed on Paramount+, Tubi, Kanopy, Pluto TV, and Freeview, while the following two installments ‘Mad Max 2,’ and ‘Beyond the Thunderdome’ can only be rented on Amazon, Apple TV Store and Google Play. ‘Fury Road’ can be streamed on Max and Fubi. ‘Furiosa’ will have a theatrical release before it arrives on streaming services.


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Will there be more ‘Mad Max’ movies?

As we’ve mentioned numerous times before, ‘Furiosa’ is scheduled to be released in May 2024, while ‘Fury Road: Wasteland’ doesn’t have a set release date as of December 2023. We do know that Tom Hardy signed up to play Max in three movies, so the future of the franchise post ‘Wasteland’ is unclear.

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