|Rating:R for strong violence and a bizarre dance/orgy scene
Starring: Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving
Directed By: Andy and Larry Wachowski
Well movie fans, this is the moment that all of us have been waiting for; the unveiling of the next installment of the Matrix saga. The film hooks us with a fabulous introduction by the means of computer generated code that depicts the inner workings of a clock. Then we see explosions, slow motion posing, and Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) in a leather outfit!!! The story line then shifts to the invasion of Zion (the last city of the humans) by 250,000 Sentinels that will ultimately destroy everything in their path. There is only one hope for the human race…Neo (Keanu Reeves). Neo must go into the Matrix to speak with the Oracle (Gloria Foster) in an attempt to formulate a plan to shut down programs that govern the conscious illusion that is put forth over the human race.
The storyline of the movie, in my opinion, left out a main ingredient that any successful movie needs…characters. It seemed to me that the first movie focused more on the characters and their understanding of life itself, but this sequel really didn’t give out any more information of who Neo, Trinity, and Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) were. The story itself was, more or less, a love story between Neo and Trinity. And, I’m sorry to upset all of my fellow Star Wars nerds out there, but Episode Two sucked for the same reason. The love story was okay between Neo and Trinity because of the symbolic references toward the human race, but as an audience we should have the right to learn more about Neo and Trinity. Unlike the first film, Morpheus was simply there. The Wachowski brothers tried to show us a little more of his past via the love interest between him and Naobi (Jada Pinkett-Smith), but it felt that every time we started to understand Morpheus, the film would cut away to a less significant scene. I thought that this sequel could have done a better job with the characters, but hopefully, this will change in the third installment.
The Matrix wouldn’t be the Matrix without philosophical ideas. These segments of dialogue were, in a nutshell, sub par. I felt as though the concept of control, as presented by Councillor Hamann (Anthony Zerbe) was extremely ridiculous because of the context of the plot line. Yes, control and power have a great deal to do with the Matrix itself, but it has nothing to do with 250,000 Sentinels invading Zion. Also, in this conversation, the word point itself was said five times in a matter of three or four sentences. Quite frankly, I was annoyed after the second usage of this “special” word. Determinism was brought up in conversations with the Oracle and the Architect (Helmus Bakaitis). This concept was okay with the Oracle, but I thought the idea of choice made a direct connection with the audience with the conversation involving the Architect (Helmut Bakaitis). Other philosophical issues of power and purpose were brought up with the Merovingian (played by Lambert Wilson) and the Keymaker (Randall Duk Kim). Overall, the philosophy behind the movie was okay, but nothing compared to the first film.
In my opinion, this film was visually amazing. There were several action scenes that were spectacular! The film spent an enormous amount of money on a freeway scene that caused drool to slowly drip from my jaw that was hanging wide open from the awe I was experiencing. Also, the computer animation was magnificent, especially when Neo was fending off a swarm of Agent Smith’s (Hugo Weaving). This is what makes the Matrix what it is, visual effects. I feel that the fighting scenes were improved upon since the first film, and that the use of computers leaves us all asking ourselves “how in the world did they do it?” Overall, I feel that this film is worth anyone’s time and money, and, as Morpheus says…to “free our minds.” Thank you for reading, and happy movie going.