It should be well-known by now that my favorite film of all time is “The Matrix.” It is the perfect blend of “popcorn entertainment,” thought-provoking philosophies, and human drama (the three main attractions to moviegoing in the first place, right?) With its high quality as both a sci-fi action spectacle and challenging drama, it opened my eyes to the possibilities of film and gave me my first sense of “movie magic.” Released in 1999, its questions are still relevant to this day especially to teenagers like myself. In an age where we are losing touch with humanity in favor of e-mail and text messaging for communication, it asks, “Are we becoming slaves to technology? Do we still control machines or do they control us?” It also tackles the big, universal questions like, “Why are we here and what defines reality?” It’s the headiest moviegoing experience I’ve ever had. Therefore, when the sequels came out, I was beyond excited. I was freaking out. Imagine a sequel being made to your all-time favorite movie– I was anxious, worried, hopeful, confident, and thrilled at the same time. When I saw the preview for “The Matrix Reloaded,” my jaw literally hit the floor (Wow, how cliché did that sound?) Even with my enormous enthusiasm for “The Matrix,” this is the first time I’ve actually written about “The Matrix Reloaded” and “The Matrix Revolutions.” So, buckle your seatbelts. Here we go…
“The Matrix Reloaded”
“The Matrix” brought sophistication and depth to the sci-fi action genre with its unique philosophies. “Reloaded” is basically a diluted version of “The Matrix.” It has all of the action from the first film, but very little insight. In fact, its philosophical elements are insulting in comparison to the first film. When it tries to be interesting or intelligent like the original, it just comes off as pure, silly “mumbo-jumbo.” It is so “mumbo-jumbo” in fact that it seems almost like a parody of “The Matrix.”
The good news? The action sequences in “Reloaded” are nothing short of spectacular. They are truly breathtaking. From a fight scene with hundreds of Agent Smith clones to the freeway chase, the film provides plenty of excitement and intensity. Like the first film, its special effects and groundbreaking and awe-inspiring. Because of its lack of depth though, it is “just a movie” whereas “The Matrix” is a really profound, unforgettable film.
“The Matrix Revolutions”
“The Matrix Revolutions” is an improvement over “Reloaded.” It delivers the poetry that “Reloaded” definitely lacked. The last act is almost like a fairy tale in that Neo and Trinity travel to the Oz-like Machine City which takes on the quality of “a forbidden forest” with its sinister machine bugs and moody atmosphere. It is reminiscent of a Grimm Brothers tale. Like the first film, it tackles universal themes like love and death.
“The Matrix:” A+
“The Matrix Reloaded:” B
“The Matrix Revolutions:” B+
Well, there you have it. I finally revealed my opinion of the “Matrix” sequels. Most people were severely disappointed by the sequels unlike me, so I encourage you readers to debate with me about these films. Rebuttal, anyone?