When Australian screenwriter and director George Miller conceived Mad Max with producer Byron Kennedy in the late '70s, he tapped into his earlier experience as an emergency room doctor and the often-violent deaths he saw there. He also found inspiration in old silent films, which kept characters moving in a stylized manner that later dialogue-heavy movies regularly trapped in static situations.

From the start, Miller knew the main character (played by a magnetic Mel Gibson in the first three movies) would not say much as he sought vengeance on the post-apocalyptic gangs that assaulted and killed his family. The desert wastelands, explosive chase scenes and nonstop action sequences would supplant plot and character development.

As you'll see in the below list of Mad Max Movies Ranked, the initial trio - Mad Max, The Road Warrior (originally made as Mad Max 2) and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome - set a new standard and look for action films in the '80s. But with the arrival of Mad Max: Fury Road in 2015, the series reached another level of excellence. There's never been an action movie quite like it.

READ MORE: Indiana Jones Movies Ranked

Fury Road introduced a new actor in the lead role and new intensity. The plot seemed even more inconsequential; the on-screen action had barely set aside enough time to lay out a premise. It didn't matter - once again, the story was secondary to how it was told.

All of the films in the Mad Max series have one thing in common: an overwhelming desire to entertain. From post-apocalyptic Australian upstart to popular decades-spanning action series, dystopian chaos was never so exhilarating, as you'll see in the list of Mad Max Movies Ranked.

Mad Max Movies Ranked

From post-apocalyptic Australian upstart to popular decades-spanning action series, dystopian chaos was never so exhilarating.

Gallery Credit: Michael Gallucci

More From US 103.1 FM