HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Don't Breathe 2
Closing Time
Cryptozoo
Weathering with You
Rim of the World
Love & Basketball
JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time
Trapped
We Need to Do Something
Falbalas
Vanguard
A-X-L
Injustice
Bigfoot Hunters
Armitage III: Polymatrix
Girls Nite Out
Moxie!
Five Women for the Killer
Dolce Vita, La
Pig
I Am Belmaya
Lodger, The
Show, The
Beta Test, The
Medium, The
John and the Hole
Survivalist, The
Ape Woman, The
Black Widow
Cop Secret
Dark Eyes of London, The
V/H/S/94
Fay Grim
Night of the Animated Dead
Freshman Year
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions
Anne at 13,000 Ft.
Even Mice Belong in Heaven
Death Screams
Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr.
   
 
Newest Articles
Hungary for Cartoons: Hungarian Animations on MUBI
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
   
 
  Matrix, The Pill Poppers
Year: 1999
Director: Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski
Stars: Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Ann Moss, Hugo Weaving, Gloria Foster, Joe Pantoliano, Marcus Chong, Julian Arahanga, Matt Doran, Belinda McClory, Anthony Ray Parker, Paul Goddard, Robert Taylor, David Aston, Marc Aden Gray
Genre: Action, Science Fiction, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: There's a disturbance in this apartment block of the city, as cops assemble in one of the homes to track down a troublemaker. She is Trinity (Carrie-Ann Moss), and she has been doing her own tracing, of someone online who she needs to get hold of, for very important reasons, though thus far he has proven difficult to pin down. As she makes good her escape, shooting, kicking and punching her way through the assembled law enforcers and slaughtering them without being caused too much trouble, one special agent, Smith (Hugo Weaving) proves harder to get rid of, and it's only chance that allows her to get away...

But Trinity is not our protagonist, that would be Neo, played by Keanu Reeves who with this blockbuster would become the poster boy for cyberspace and every keyboard warrior who thought themselves pretty tasty in a fight, be that in the so-called real world or in an online flame war. Indeed, there were viewers coming out of The Matrix who found themselves seeing the world in a radically altered manner thanks to its plot which discussed over and over again the possibilities for living in a society that was not genuine, it was a construct, and thus a thousand thinkpieces were inflicted on an unwary population.

The hook to The Matrix was that Neo was not who he believed he was, and on being contacted by Trinity he wakes up to the fact that he now has a mentor, Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne), who can teach him precisely what is really happening in the universe. That this fed into the superhero wish-fulfilment fantasy playing out across pop culture into the next century is no coincidence, for audiences wanted to feel powerful through surrogate characters who could assert themselves, often through violence combined with superior strategy. Add to that a heightened awareness of what was a very conspiratorial take on the globe, and there was your audience.

Not that the Wachowskis, who dreamt up this scenario, were entirely original, as cyberpunk had been a thing since the nineteen-eighties, often in the work of William Gibson on the page, and they drew on a number of references to craft their dystopia. They made sure to put allusions to the influences across the film so anyone watching it who recognised them could pat themselves on the back that they "got it", much in the way that conspiracy theorists looked out for details that they could use to piece together their ultra-paranoid picture of the lives they were living. Thus the influenced became the influencer as it turned receptive audiences on to all sorts of parapolitics and theories that would only be accessible through red pill taking insider knowledge you understood, not like these sheeple who thought The Matrix was a throwaway action flick.

But the dark side, which should have been obvious, has grown more apparent down the years, as conspiracies have replaced facts in how we see the methods and functions of our societies, and the way that many try to wrest control of their lives from the overwhelming powerlessness in the face of the corporations and rogue states is to do what Neo did: turn to violence. There is a sequence late on in the film where after he has learnt his new talents for bloodshed, he unleashes them on a bunch of security guards in a corporate-style building; both he and Trinity impassively take back their agency in their world by gunning down people they do not know with zero consequences, and we are asked to applaud them for it. Yes, Yuen Woo-Ping was onboard for fight choreography, and Bill Pope's cinematography makes everything look sleek and glossy, but the grim fact was that there could be no mass shooter on the planet who did not see that and think, that's the way to do it. Obviously blaming real life violence on fiction doesn't tally neatly at all, but The Matrix remains a troubling effort for the obsessive way it boosts the paranoid while building them up as new Messiahs. Music by Don Davis.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 550 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Lana Wachowski  (1965 - )

Reclusive American director who, along with brother Andy, now Lilly, wrote and directed the Matrix trilogy. The Chicago-born Wachowski brothers debuted with the lesbian gangster thriller Bound, and followed it with 1999's sci-fi thriller The Matrix which was a critical and commercial smash and set a new standard for special effects. Sequels The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions were less well received but still scored at the box office. What did not score was their live action version of cartoon Speed Racer, their adaptation of the bestselling Cloud Atlas or their original epic Jupiter Ascending, though cult followings were not far away. Also wrote the screeplays for Assassins and V For Vendetta. Born Larry, and credited as such on her first few films, she became Lana in the 21st century.

Lilly Wachowski  (1967 - )

Reclusive American director who, along with brother Larry, now Lana, wrote and directed the Matrix trilogy. The Chicago-born Wachowski brothers debuted with the lesbian gangster thriller Bound, and followed it with 1999's sci-fi epic The Matrix which was a critical and commercial smash and set a new standard for special effects. Sequels The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions were less well received but still scored at the box office. What did not score was their live action version of cartoon Speed Racer, their adaptation of the bestselling book Cloud Atlas or their original epic Jupiter Ascending, though cult followings were not far away. Also wrote the screeplays for Assassins and V For Vendetta. Born Andy, and credited as such on her first films.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: