Five of us watched Mad Max: Fury Road and were unsure what the silver "valhalla spray" was- certainly it had to do with Valhalla, but.. is it paint? Freezing spray? What is its significance, and how is it related to the use in the movie?

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    I believe it was chrome, and one of the characters may have said that, but I'm not certain. Commented May 18, 2015 at 16:55
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    reviewing some reviews, it's being called "chrome" and some links are made to the worship of car culture. that may be as good as this answer can get. @BrettFromLA Commented May 18, 2015 at 16:59
  • They do say chrome when they do the spray. Presumably to relate to the reliance on well-oiled machines and their interest in making fancy cars.
    – Catija
    Commented May 18, 2015 at 19:25
  • Congratulations, this question is the winner of the corresponding topic challenge!
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Commented May 24, 2015 at 23:05
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    by the way, you can get the paint on Amazon, It goes by the name: Wilton Cold Mist Silver Spray
    – MozenRath
    Commented Oct 21, 2015 at 9:05

8 Answers 8


Movies.com interviewed director George Miller, where he revealed his inspiration:

I saw a documentary where young [Cambodian] soldiers would go into war, they had little jaded deities -- and before they ran into battle, they put them in their mouths and just held them with little straps.


This was their ritual before battle -- that, like the Buddha, the chrome paint will help lift them to a higher place. It'll help bring them to Valhalla.

And from an interview with actor Hugh Keays-Byrne, who plays Immortan Joe:

What exactly is the silver stuff you spray on Nicholas Hoult’s face?

That’s like a very euphoric drug.

As George Miller explains further in the interview:

[Immortan] Joe was a member of the military who used his leadership skills to build a cult.

"He was a colonel named Joe Moore. He was military, and he organized everybody, eventually being able to exploit a cult as he took over this dominance hierarchy."


  • My guess is that cult leader Immortan Joe came up with the "Valhalla" explanation to manipulate his followers into drugging themselves. The War Boys don't actually know that the spray contains a drug. They genuinely believe it will help them get to Valhalla.
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    When you say "chrome paint", do you mean silver or yellowish in color?
    – Pacerier
    Commented Jun 11, 2015 at 0:34
  • The interview with Keays-Byrne doesn't seem as if it was intended to be realistic. For example, he's faking a character. In addition, an actor's version of events doesn't always have to be canonical.
    – T. Rutter
    Commented Jun 21, 2015 at 12:53

They are not huffing paint. It has nothing to do with "huffing." They are spray painting their "grills" (teeth) so they will be (as they say in the film) "shiny and chrome" when they go to their Valhalla. Remember, in their Valhalla, they ride forever. It's a kind of statement...it has nothing to do with any toxic or intoxicant effect.

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    Having watched the movie twice in the last few days, I gotta say this seems to me at least, to be the correct answer.
    – Daft
    Commented May 26, 2015 at 15:48

Ok so from what I gathered, they're effectively 'huffing paint', in order to make their suicide easier to go through with. It's narcotic effects make them more willing and geared up to 'enter Valhalla'. Notice how both Nux and the other War Boy both widen their eyes and smile maniacally after they've been sprayed. The visual element is likely a reference to their obsession with cars, so they're 'chromed' up, but I took it to be more for it's effects than it's look.

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    I'm not sure that "filling your mouth with paint" is an effective method of huffing... though I'm not an expert by any stretch of the imagination.
    – Catija
    Commented May 19, 2015 at 16:50
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    I just assumed that it was a mixture of that and, as others have said, the 'chroming up' element. If it's near the nose, it's probably going to be inhaled, and I imagine it's probably quite strong/toxic
    – Tom Harvey
    Commented May 19, 2015 at 16:54
  • I don't think it was primarily for narcotziation (it probalby didn't have a reaosnable effect) and more of a ritual thing, like many of the things they did and like you yourself explained in the latter part of the answer.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Commented May 19, 2015 at 23:48
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    This makes no sense. Drinking paint is not the same as huffing it.
    – Daft
    Commented May 26, 2015 at 11:27
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    Huffing normally had the can upside down to breathe in the propellant, not the liquid being propelled.
    – cde
    Commented Apr 30, 2016 at 19:59

I think maybe people are looking too much into the spray.

Mad Max IS visual storytelling at its best. The spray could be their ritual before they commit suicide (enter Valhalla) and perhaps they use it to mark their bodies so they can be identified when they enter their next life. But I also like the idea that it gives them a quick high (i imagine inhaling any kind of solvent would make you go a bit dizzy) so their suicide is slightly easier on them.

Writing this I had another thought: They say 'Witness me' before they kill themselves... maybe the spray is a visual indication to everyone too far away to hear that they are about to enter Valhalla?

But until we get a quote from the Director it's all just interpretation and as a community... I'm sure someone will hit the nail on the head and give everyone a satisfying answer.

  • I think maybe..., To me, this film..., I think the spray is.... This is not a good answer.
    – Daft
    Commented May 26, 2015 at 12:28
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    @Daft While I appreciate your patronising quotations... the origin of the spray is never divulged in any detail. With most visual films, it's all down to interpretation. I offered a number of 'ideas' of possible reasons for the spray. Whether the author of the question is happy with these interpretations is up to them, not you.
    – davidlumix
    Commented May 26, 2015 at 12:34
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    Please everybody calm down a bit. There is no need to put sarcastic statements into the answer or to accuse anyone of any generic statements about the relevance of film-studies or anything. While this answer does not provide an evidence (like none of all the answers), it does provide at least reasonable argumentation based on the movie. This might not make it an authoritative answer, but it also doesn't make it not an answer. But neither would I agree that all answers to any question of such kind necessarily would have to be mere interpretations...
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Commented May 26, 2015 at 12:56
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    "until we get a quote from the director": Immortan Joe annoints Nux at one point by spraying him with chrome paint and offering a benediction. There is no reason to wait for the director regarding the significance of the act. The only point lacking is any supposed narcotic effects, which are probably trivial.
    – Yorik
    Commented May 26, 2015 at 19:48

Just as everyone has said, but I'm assuming you're more confused at why they did it. All those people who are painted white and spray their mouths (I forgot what they're called) are bred at a young age to believe everything Immortan Joe told them. He basically created an army that would do anything for him. Everything they believe in is because he's told them that, they risk their lives because they think Valhalla is real. Some people hated it because of that aspect, I personally think they just didn't understand it. It's like how Kim Jong-Un makes North Korea believe he's a gold medalist, doesn't poo etc. it's a pretty great way to create an army, they're bread to defend and attack for you. The paint is just a metaphor for what they have been told they'll become and they do it before they die in an act to help their master (Immortan Joe). Shiny and Chrome


Its simply to "pretty up" for their acceptance in Valhalla. It has nothing to do with a drug, suicide or the like. The one character also refers to shiny things a few tines in the movie especially when seeing the wives at the truck. Its simply more of a tribute to Valhalla and its pretty. Think of it as their "gold" as far as being pretty, valued, of high significance. Not a drug or related whatsoever


They are huffing. They are out of the tree. It is the equivalent of soldiers in WW1 or WW2 having a shot of rum before they went into battle to face there death.


It's called chrome, and it's main purpose is actually so they can spit fuel into the engine, as when they don't have the spray they can only do it for a short time.

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    Can you explain why you think this is the case? I don't see any correlation between the scenes where they're spitting fuel into the engines and when they spray the chrome.
    – Catija
    Commented May 24, 2015 at 22:26
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    Steve, I think you're wrong here. The chrome spray is directly linked to 'suicide' and nothing to do with spitting fuel into the engines, as the few moments where they are spitting fuel, there is no chrome spray in sight. Quite a conclusion jump you've made.
    – davidlumix
    Commented May 26, 2015 at 10:29
  • If you re watch that scene you'll notice that the guy is actually sipping fuel and spitting it into the intake. The chrome spray has nothing to do with it.
    – pt18cher
    Commented Jun 3, 2015 at 20:04

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