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Friday 21 November 2003

Matrix: Revolutions [drdave]

Remember the first Matrix film? It was good. I mean it was something special wasn't it? It wasn't going to win any awards for acting or originality or anything outlandish like that, but it had something about it. Something new. Something we'd never seen before. It successfully married kung-fu, industrial-gothic and cod-philosophy into something decidedly eyebrow raising. It made trenchcoats fashionable again. It made it desirable to have a hacker alias. It made people in the street talk about Plato's Cave with someting bordering comprehension. No, this was no ordinary throw-away action flick. And on the back of this, it ignited the DVD phenomenon. Needless to say, the ending left everyone slack jawed at the prospect of the promised two sequels. Would Neo free the Matrix? Was there a Matrix-within-a-Matrix? What was The Oracle? Well, it seems that somewhere between the first and second movies, the Wachowski brothers decided to abandon this winning formula and take a far m! ore well travelled path.
Matrix: Revolutions, like Reloaded before it, is a sub-par action movie. It successfully manages to take every single element that made the first movie so special, discard it, and replace it with something hum-drum and pedestrian. Like the second movie, it packs every scene with pointlessly weighty speeches about 'truth', or 'choice', or 'freedom'. Like the second movie, it moves the focus away from freeing the matrix and puts saving Zion firmly in centre stage. An odd descision, given that Zion appears to be populated with a million deeply annoying people. Any kind of bond, or sympathy we feel for the protagonists is instantly lost.
But the worst crime that Revolutions commits is in chosing to eliminate by far the strongest element of the first, and to an extent the second. Kung Fu. Oh true, there's a luke warm, rehashed lobby scene which doesn't seem half as effective 5 years on. And there's yet another Agent Smith fight... the final, apocalyptic 'win this or Zion gets it' fight is with Agent Smith. Ahha. Right. So Neo fought Agent Smith in the first film, and won. Neo fought 100 Agent Smiths in the second film, and won. And now we're supposed to believe that there's is anything riding on this latest slow motion slap-a-thon? Nah, I don't buy it.
Beyond that, its by-the-numbers sci-fi action flick.
Bet you thought the Wachowski brothers were going to sweep the rug from under us by revealing that the 'real' world was in fact another Matrix? I did. Hell, Neo stopped those robots in Reloaded with a commanding gesture and a bit of harsh language... surely there must be something odd (and therefore interesting) happening. But no, the Wachowskis leave the rug well and truely under our feet. They also put a nice comfy chair on it for us to sit on. See, as the (new) Oracle patiently explains, Neo has a 'connection to the source' that allows him to do whacky stuff in the real world. Right? Connection... to... the source. Pitiful.
And speaking of badly explained occurences... what exactly happened to Agent Smith? Oh sure, he exploded, but why? The whole film is full of these stupid, badly thought out pseudo-mystical nonesense devices that will have leather-coated morons ruminating for years about the deeper philosophical ramifications and the apparently obvious (and oh so clever) Christ analogies.
Do I recommend it? No. Its crap. Crass. Cinema at its worst. It is a cynical cash in. It is tedious. It is everything the first wasn't. If you want a decent film with fighting and trechcoats, hire Equilibrium. If you wan't to spend hours scratching your chin and contemplating the nature of reality, hire Dark City. If you want to know who 'The One' really is, get Highlander and meet Connor McCloud Of The Clan McCloud.
If you still want to go and see it, then be a man and 'fess up that you only want to see it because of Monica Belluci's rather spectacular cleavage! A very noble aim, but sadly even her ample bossom only makes a token appearance - though it does heave in a most satisfying manner for five minutes. All downhill from there though.
Don't watch this film because it you do, mark my words, there will be a fourth. And we really don't want that, do we?


  1. Well I thought it was good and fun film that left us talking about it in the pub afterwards. can't say better than that.
    If you wanted the first film you should have gone to see that instead.

  2. Don't be soft. I didn't want to see the first film. I wanted to see a good film. You know, one with a plot. One that made sense. One that wasn't full of Tom-Paulin-a-likes banging on and on, endlessly. Failing that, I might have settled for a watchable action flick, much like the second.
    Instead, what the relentless money machine in Hollywood churned out was a film with no redeeming features. Okay, so it looked good. But all films look good these days - hell, The Core looked good, but thats not going to make it onto many people's Top Fives.
    Take my advice, if you want to see a decent Kung Fu flick, go see Kill Bill, which is a very fine piece of cinema. Don't reward these clowns by giving them anymore money.

  3. I went to see this on Friday night. A tenner each. To be bored stupid by a film that if you strip away the ILM SFX, leaves you with a plotless, pointless, tedious shell. The dialogue is dreadful, the conclusion predictable, this is a poor poor effort, proof if it was needed that this is nothing more than a hollywood cash cow designed to sell everything from sunglasses to lipstick.
    So last night we ended up seeing Ghosts of the Abyss at IMAX Waterloo.. omg that rocked

  4. When it became apparent how poor this movie is, I resolved not to see it and just leeched the torrent. The missus and I watched it a couple of days ago in the comfort of our own lounge. Now when the first film came out, we went back the next day to see it again. This time, we were wondering out of the room to cook dinner and do other things. Neither of us felt that the movie held enough attention to warrant reaching over and hitting the pause key.
    I liked the special effects stuff but the movie plot was so poor it was embarassing. Like Dave, it just seems that they didn't get at all what was good about the first film. It was a Kung Fu flick with some sci-fi, yay! This film? Fuck knows what it was but absolutely everything was piss poor and substandard (appart from Belluci's fun bags, as Dave says).
    Of course it has still taken thrice what the Matrix took in the box office on the first week. This bizarre and fucked up notion that Pod that somehow we're asking for the first movie is so beside the point, it ought to be on the cartoon channel. Who wants the first movie, you just want a film which is even in the same league as the sublime original. It isn't that.
    There are better movies doing everything which is being done in Revolutions (which Dave also points out). It's not so terrible that it's not worth a download but I'd be devastated if I paid to go to the cinema to see it. It's also turding on the original from a height and that's the biggest crime here.
    What useless cocks, someone explain their thought processes to me!

  5. 'Hear hear!' - AND what annoyed me quite a lot too was that VAST amounts of the film didn't involve real actors at all, it was *entirely* CG. I'm sorry, but whatever happened to proper films eh?

  6. Must disagree with Reloaded, it took the series in a different direction to Matrix, and I felt it did it very well - I actually preferred the sequel.
    Revolutions however, is a steaming pile of claptrap that deserved to go straight to DVD. Glad to find someone else who saw Equilibrium for a seriously excellent film. I put it on a par with the first Matrix tbqfh. But then I like my dystopian futures a little closer to home than the inside of flash ROM running a fancy world simulator.

  7. You preferred Reloaded? Christ. Yes because I'd much rather watch that stupid 1000 Agent Smiths CGI sequence than than the classic Kung-Fu battles and pioneering slow-mo crane-kicks from the original. Not. Jeez, I didn't even bother to keep Reloaded on my hard drive.

  8. The first film was superb. The second shite. I haven't even bothered to watch the third.

  9. The Matrix changed my life. It was one of the few films that I was screaming noooo!!! at the end because I just didnt want it to finish. I've watched it dozens of times.
    So I wait years to see the sequel Reloaded to have to endure scenes like the one where one of the crew members wife is having a go at him because he is spending to much time on his ship - from inspirational genius to domestic clap trap scenes like that - I kid you not tears welled in my eyes watching it. From what I'm reading here for my own well being it sounds like I wont be going to Revolutions....

  10. Sounds a bit shit like

  11. Like the rest of you, Pod doesn't count, I was deeply disappointed in this film. I really thought they could pull the arse out the fire that was reloaded, talk about abject failure!
    Perhaps Beri Vogts helped on the script?
    So is every captive human in the matrix dead? mindwiped by smith and then fileshredded by the ever chirpy Neo?
    Is he actually dead? Horrifically like some post modern viking his death barge was all afire. Surely to christ he's all done and dusted, fucked off to the big recycle bin in the sky....shit that'd mean 2 clicks and he'd be back. Arnie as Neo. NOOoo. REBOOT.
    back again. I'm so utterly frustrated by how this series finished off.
    WHY SAVE ZION?! It's pointless. Far better to do what smith did, take over the matrix and then free all the folks you like in it. Take over the dreadlocked killing machines and make them do your bidding.
    WTF is the point?
    Utterly sickening. Can't even bear to think about just how fucked up it is. Still houmous made me laugh about how it ended up a pastiche (briefly) of domestic bliss.ZION.It actually annoys me how this was dealt with. There must be a two tier society in there which wasn't explained.
    Tier 1. Freed from the machines, but hotwired for learning. The l33t basically.
    Tier 2. The fucktard. Learning at normal pace, no plug in and know kung-fu/pilot a heli etc..
    Over time Teir2 must have outbred the static tier1, mind you I don't recall seeing any of the council with the jack sockets....
    bah. too many things wrong with it to try and work em out. No point.