The Matrix Resurrections is the sequel we’ve been waiting for!
Almost 20 years after two polarizing sequels hit theaters and left a once-promising franchise dormant, The Matrix Resurrections breathes new life into the sci-fi epic. With a mind-bending plot, dazzling special effects, and a very human core, this latest installment lives up to the promises made by the original.
Let’s look at The Matrix Reloaded and Revolutions for what they were: two blockbuster sequels to a revolutionary sci-fi action movie. Reloaded felt like a dumbed-down follow-up with clumsy allusions to religious mythology that pad the running time between action sequences. Its flaws were largely the same as the first. But then, the concluding chapter was two hours of CGI explosions and a bunch of one-dimensional characters followed by a woefully anticlimactic final battle. Reloaded had fans filled with disappointed and Revolutions was universally reviled.
Thankfully, The Matrix Resurrections is fresh and most importantly, highly entertaining.
The plot is so overwhelmingly meta it borders on parody. This is a considerable storytelling risk for filmmakers, and I do not doubt that many will dislike it. However, I found it creative, captivating, and at times, hilarious. Lana Wachowski’s voice shines through every sentence. You can sense her frustrations with the studio, the audience, and the critics. Even more so than the original, Resurrections has a real human heart. It’s all about connection, an important story to tell in today’s world. To the center, the entire conflict around Neo’s connections to Smith, the Architect, and above all, to Trinity was a beautiful touch. This was one thing the franchise was always missing.
The kung fu fight scenes that the series is known for are the one area where this film doesn’t deliver. There just aren’t many memorable moments from any of them. Instead, they’re either retreads of scenes from the earlier entries or too chaotic and close-up to get any real sense of space. This doesn’t kill the movie, though, and that says something. There are many other action sequences that thrill and carry emotional weight.
I give The Matrix Resurrections an 8.9 out of 10. Above all, this movie is truly unique. It’s a movie that could only be made now, not two years after Revolutions, or five. Its structure and plot devices could only work within the confines of The Matrix. The nostalgia audiences feel for the series, and the vitriol towards the sequels are essential parts of the experience. I had an absolute blast. This is the Matrix movie we’ve been waiting for all this time!
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The Matrix Resurrections will be on HBO Max and in Theaters December 22nd.