George Miller's #MadMax movies helped defined cult cinema and spawned many imitators. The most recent in the franchise, #FuryRoad, brought the franchise back into the mainstream and made cultural icons out of characters like Max and his counterpart #Furiosa. It's not likely there will be another official Mad Max movie, but how about an unofficial one? Enter the Chinese-made ripoff Mad Shelia.
There isn't a lot of information so far, except that it's coming out in 2017. As for the plot? I think we can assume #MadShelia is about a surprisingly clean-looking yet low budget desert where everyone has pop-star haircuts and is being terrorized by a crazed, virgin-hunting villain that looks like a Chinese #MadEyeMoody cosplayer and it's up to a model in a tailor-made outfit with a bunch of guns to save the day. Rain is also somehow involved. That sounds like Mad Max, right?
To be fair, Mad Shelia actually looks like it will be a lot of fun. Bad definitely, but the best kind of bad. A refreshingly shameless, unironic, blatant copy. The kind of movie you pass along to your friends when no one respectable is watching.
In the not-too-distant past, meaning about five years ago, companies like #Asylum built a lucrative business on "ripoffsploitation," making micro-budget copies of Hollywood blockbusters with eerily similar-sounding titles. Skirting the outer limits of copyright infringement, this business model seems to have worked like a charm, tricking one unsuspecting video store customer after another out of their money and slowly building into the cheesy money-making juggernaut that created the undeniably original but just as cheesy #Sharknado franchise. Before this, in the '70s and '80s, loopholes in copyright law made Italian and Turkish filmmakers masters of this dark art. Now, it's all coming back around again.
Also, due props should be given to the filmmakers for the cultural nod in the title. Mad Shelia is obviously not a Chinese name, but is in fact a reference to Australian culture. There, Sheila is a casual term for a woman. (By the way, your eyes are not tricking you. It's not #MadSheila but Shelia.) Sort of like if Mad Max had been an American movie, Mad Shelia might be called "Mad Chick." Americans might know this already if they've ever seen Crocodile Dundee.
So what do you think of Mad Shelia? Intrigued? Confused? Annoyed? Let's hear it.