Monday, June 18, 2012

One Key Defense for the Matrix Trilogy

Everyone has some reason for not liking the Matrix movies.  Some may claim that it’s bad science fiction while others will cite poor acting and an unraveling plot.  While I can’t totally disagree with those people, I feel that the films have some redeeming points.  First, the action scenes and fighting were so original and so well devised that they are still copied today.  Additionally the characters, lines, and scenarios still show up from time to time in internet memes and comedy punch lines.

But I feel the best thing the Matrix films has going is the fact that the movies came to an end.

Yes, I know that the conclusion in Matrix Revolutions was convoluted; however, audiences know how the story ends.  And that’s not something we can say about any of the movie franchises.  Can you name more than five franchises that have definitive conclusions?

And you can say Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and Twilight, but those are movie franchises based on popular novels.  Their stories have been clearly outlined by the authors.   When it comes to purely cinematic creations like Pirates of the Carribean, Indiana Jones or even Star Wars, there seems to be a persistence of rumors circulating that the stories may be continued.

Films now are rebooted and re-imagined so often that the film industry seems to be intentionally infecting the popular culture consciousness with Alzheimer’s.  We have reached a problem with Hollywood that has affected a similar medium: comic books.  Because of so many continuity issues, publishing companies have to reboot their books to start fresh.  And of course comic books cannot reach a conclusion, so their stories must be dragged on to the point of banality.

I enjoy reading the ancient Greek Mythology story of Hercules.  Old Herc met an ending that was sad and painful, and it came about because of his wife’s desire for him to stay at home.  There’s an ending when Hercules achieves an apotheosis and has his divine part welcomed to Olympus while his mortal half descends to Hades.

There’s a satisfaction to knowing how a story ends.  I am glad that The Matrix franchise shows no signs of life.  Knowing the fate of Neo, Trinity, and Morpheus makes me content. That sort of closure makes a story more enjoyable.

Sometimes, I don’t want to know how the story may continue.  I just want to know how it ends.

Keep rising from the graves of ignorance, my Zombies…


  1. The problem with the Matrix trillogy is that Reloaded and Revolutions would have made one awesome sequel if they had cut all the crap out and thought just a bit more about the story.

    In The Matrix we see an average guy become the hero. In Reloaded we see that despite his powers he still has a human brain and can be easily manipulated. In Revolutions we see him submit to his fate that was scripted for him by the machines. So what does Revolutions add to Reloade? Nothing. Revolutions is no twist, no alternative interpretation. It's just the natural conclusion of Reloaded. That could have been told in 15 minutes at the end of Reloaded and a post credit bonus scene.

    Yes, the story has an end, but it's a 15 minutes end that has been dragged out for two hours.

    1. Yes--I agree as long as there's some form of closure. I think the Wachowskis caved in to the Hollywood rule of three. And maybe they wanted to have the drawn out mech battle at Zion? But like the Star Wars prequels which would have made one excellent film instead of three drawn out movies, the Matrix suffers from trying to do too much.

      Nevertheless, I'm glad that I can spend a day watching the three movies and seeing a story completed. That's a rarity for a purely cinematic property.

      But I do see what you are saying about the Trilogy being bloated with fluff.

    2. maybe i missed something, but I thought the point was he didn't submit to the fate that was scripted for him by the machines. I thought the whole point, was that the machines wanted him(neo) to select a certain number of people and restart zion, whilst letting the matrix itself continue to function or start a new matrix(which had happened to all the other neo-types, as the french dude explained that he had survived all neos predecessors and would survive him too, also the architect said there have been 5? matrices before and that giving neo not a fate, but a destiny created control over an uncontrollable factor i.e. anamoloy). The fact was that an outside threat (Mr Smith) had entered into the matrix and threatened both the human matrix world and thus the machine world, and both the machines and Neo realised that Neo was the only antidote to destroying Mr. Smith, hence this would be the only time that the Neo anomoly wouldn't survive and the only time that peace between the machines and humans would be reached. Now fair enough the films may have fleshed out the machine battles but if they hadn't people would complain about the lack of action and too much talking, which was many peoples response after reloaded. I really think it's an underrated trilogy and although I think it reached a fairly logical conclusion, the conclusion was not that Neo simply accepted his fate, it was completely the contrary, he reached the point where he had the power to bargain with the machines and thus they had to accept his truce otherwise they would possibly have perished (as they needed humans to surivive and Mr Smith threatened that), all depending on how many matrices they had running in the world at the present time obviously

    3. Was this Neo an anomaly himself, or were all the Neo's anomalies? I'm curious because if this was the first anomaly that achieved peace, maybe with the reloading of the Matrix there could be a change. After all, Zion did survive, so those living outside the Matrix now have a different path that was not intended by the machine overlords...

      And I wonder what the machines considered more of an unpredicted anomaly--Smith or Neo. After all, Smith existed in his malevolent form free of machine rule because Neo exploded him in the first movie.

      Thanks for getting my old brain gears rolling again!

  2. I still prefer matrix is the best no matter what other says.Its superb.

    1. I agree. It's also a great point of conversation for its philosophical roots.