Part of what makes Mad Max: Fury Road such a miracle is the film’s presentation and use of practical effects. Many of the stunts and explosions that dazzled audiences were real, making the final product that much more spectacular.
While Hollywood has been criticized for the overuse of CGI—just see San Andreas as an example—George Miller showed that with a little imagination, anything is possible.
That doesn’t mean Fury Road didn’t feature its fair share of CGI. But you might not even have noticed due to George Miller’s ability to draw your attention to a particular subject. The CGI is more of a supplemental feature, the final flourishes that tie the package together. Without them, everything is still absolutely mesmerizing, but it’s still cool to see what happens in post before a film is released.
While George Miller was able to capture what he could using practical effects, CGI helped the director fully realize his vision. Some of the shots, like the storm, just wouldn’t have been possible without some Hollywood magic—but that doesn’t make them any less amazing. Check out some of the other comparisons; they’re sights to behold unto themselves.