The Matrix Resurrections
Updated: Jan 25, 2022
The Matrix Resurrections
Director: Lana Wachowski
Anybody who has read ‘Henry’ for any length of time knows that I am a complete science fiction tragic. Whether its William Gibson’s latest novel or the fictional references from which Mark Zuckerberg stole the term ‘Metaverse’ (more here), the creatives who explore technological determinism fixate and delight me.
A little back-story
Just to remind you, the premise of ‘The Matrix’ series is that we are all living in a construct called ‘The Matrix’ (a sort of suspended virtual reality) that has been created by machines. The machines milk the matrix to appropriate the energy generated by we unsuspecting humans.
Neo/'The One'/Thomas Anderson (Keanu Reeves) has been our constant hero through 'The Matrix' film franchise, the one who can give us back our freedom and self-determination. (By way of a spoiler alert, if I thought any of Henry’s readers who would be inclined to see ‘The Matrix Resurrections’ haven’t already – in Australia our release dates are always tardy – I’d hold back but I don’t think I’ll be spoiling anyone’s viewing :)
We enter ‘The Matrix Resurrections’ by meeting Robert Anderson (Keanu Reeves) in his ultra-modern, skyline office of his computer gaming company. Anderson/Neo, is a computer game-creator (what else) who believes he became famous for creating the wildly successful gaming sensation, ‘The Matrix’. He believes he lost his mind at the same time.
Someone has infiltrated the new game on which Anderson is working. Strangely, he is using binary code, the building blocks of the original Matrix. We become aware that a ‘loop’ has been created and he is being called upon by rebel humans who have been searching for him since the Matrix revolutions … or he is losing his mind again, the latter being the far more pedestrian explanation.
Along the journey of this fabulous fight for freedom we meet a lot of old favourites: Morpheus (now played by Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), Agent Smith (now played by Johnathan Groff), Niobe (Jada Pinkett Smith) … and some new young cyber-punks (led by ‘Bugs’, played by Jessica Henwick). These latter generation freedom-fighters feel that their free-will is eroding. They are looking to the somewhat overwhelmed Robert Anderson/Neo to fulfil the prophesy of ‘the One’.
What I loved about ‘The Matrix Resurrections’?
I loved the fact that the ’real world’ that our rebel community live in is named ‘IO’ (a name that could cheekily stand for anything from ‘input/output’, to a Greek Goddess, to the most volcanic moon in the solar system … to a top-level domain). These human rebels who have escaped the Matrix have been joined by rebel machines who have their own philosophical issues with the Matrix regime. The governing machines of the Matrix have now factionalised and are warring over scarce resources. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?
The fabulous Trinity (Carrie Anne-Moss) lives again (though newly defined as ‘Tiffany’). She has been given a ridiculously handsome husband and children inside her Matrix existence and has, of course, had any previous knowledge of the Matrix delegated to forgotten realms of her subconscious. Trinity comes into her own in ‘The Matrix Resurrections’ in a way that has hitherto not been explored in the film franchise. This coming-of-agency is delivered in a clever twist near the film’s end, where success hinges on Trinity’s choice between passion, Neo and heroism; or life as Tiffany with a demanding family. (Seriously, is that a choice?! Just kidding :)
In a scene that is both cheesy and satisfying, Trinity confronts Anderson’s/Neo’s analyst – he is in fact a Machine (played by the always fabulous Neil Patrick Harris) – and kicks-him-in-the-balls in a politically correct, very 'real world' sort of a way.
Of course, I recommend ‘The Matrix Resurrections’ to any other science fiction tragic :)
I attended the premiere of ‘The Matrix Revolutions’ with ‘Henry’ in 2003 at Sydney Opera House. It was when the Wachowski sisters were brothers, and Keanu Reeves, Jada Pinkett and Australia’s Hugo Weaving were all a part of the event.
If I remember correctly, all mobiles were confiscated to be held in the cloakroom so no one could leak any image or storyline. I fittingly wore leather jeans in deference to the film’s aesthetic while Henry, of course, was formally attired in a dark suit; elegantly appropriate for a gentleman, reformer, banker, economist, philanthropist and parliamentarian of the 18th and early 19th Centuries.
We had great fun.