Listen on! Listen on! This is the truth of it. Fighting leads to killing, and killing gets to warring, and that was damn near the death of us all. Look at us now, busted up and everyone talking about hard rain! But we've learned! By the dust of them all, Bartertown learned. Now, when men get to fighting, it happens here, and it finishes here! Two men enter; one man leaves.
And now, I've got two men — two men with a gut full of fear. Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, dying time's here!
Thunderdome's simple. Get to the weapons. Use them any way you can. I know you won't break the rules. There aren't any.
This you know: the years travel fast, and time after time I done the tell. But this ain't onebody's tell. It's the tell of us all, and you've gotta listen and to 'member, 'cause what you hears today you gotta tell the newborn tomorrow. I's lookin' behind us now into history back. I sees those of us who got the luck and started the haul for home, and I 'members how it led us here and how we was heartful 'cause we seen what there once was. One look and we knewed we'd got it straight. Those what had gone before had the knowin' and the doin' of things beyond our reckonin' — even beyond our dreamin'. Time counts and keeps countin', and we knows now: finding the trick of what's been and lost ain't no easy ride, but that's our trek. We gotta travel it, and there ain't nobody knows where it's gonna lead. Still in all, every night we does the tell so that we 'member who we was and where we came from. But most of all we 'members the man who finded us, him that came a-salvage. And we lights the city, not just for him, but for all of him that are still out there. 'Cause we knows there'll come a night when they sees the distant light and they'll be comin' home.
We were talking one day and Terry Hayes [who co-wrote the screenplays of Mad Max 2 and Beyond Thunderdome with Miller] started talking about mythology and how where people are short on knowledge, they tend to be very big on belief. In other words, they take a few fragments of knowledge and, if you take like the Aboriginal tribes of Australia, they just take simple empirical information and using those little bits of the jigsaw construct very elaborate mythological beliefs, which explain the whole universe. Terry was saying if you had a tribe of kids after the apocalypse who had only a few fragments of knowledge, [they would construct] a mythological belief as to what was before. And what would happen if Max or someone like that…
So we were talking about that, and it kicked off the idea of kids who were Lord of the Flies-type kids, and that led to this story. So it automatically had a softer heart to it. Mel Gibson often describes the character as a sort of a closet human being who denied his humanity because he thought it wasn’t conducive to survival. And we said, well this is really a story about Max coming out of the closet. And because it’s a story like that, it has a softer nature.