Matrix Resurrections: why are we afraid of change? - editorial

Matrix Resurrections: why are we afraid of change? - editorial

Matrix Resurrections

SPOILER ALERT: This article may contain minor spoilers about Matrix: Resurrections. If you haven't seen the film yet, we recommend that you only read it after you have seen it.

"Blue pill, end of story: tomorrow you will wake up in your room and believe what you want. Red pill, stay in wonderland, and you will see how deep the white rabbit hole is".

It was back in 1999 when, through the words of the legendary character of Morpheus, the Wachowski sisters opened the doors to the incredible cyberpunk imagery of The Matrix, a film that would literally unhinge any narrative archetype of the sci-fi genre, investing viewers, among other things, with a completely new insight into technology and how it affects our lives.

We almost struggle to define it simply as a motion picture, in fact. The Matrix is ​​much more: it is a cult phenomenon that has survived the test of time and has spanned the generations, it is an authentic modern and passionate treatise on philosophy with a very high cultural impact, capable of inspiring rather intimate reflections on the world that we it surrounds, all hidden under a sparkling action / sci-fi body in cyberpunk hues with an unmistakable aesthetic.

Watch on YouTube. Because the rabbit hole was really quite deep, so deep as to give way to a real narrative universe consisting of two (controversial) sequels, one (splendid) series of animated shorts, one (unobtainable) comic series, three ( questionable) official video games and a recently released (incredible) tech demo based on the futuristic Unreal Engine 5.

In short, it is an imaginary with truly infinite possibilities that lends itself to virtually any type of adaptation but which, for many years, has been a bit put on the bench, probably because producing further sequels for that story it would definitely not have been an easy feat for a variety of reasons.

The first and most important, of course, is that the third episode, Revolutions, had a rather accomplished ending that left little room for further plot development . The second, not to be underestimated, is that we live in a historical period in which the fans of the most famous franchises do not miss an opportunity to show themselves rather uncompromising: it takes very little, it is enough to disregard expectations often based on nothing to trigger long discussions with bright tones about forums, social networks and online aggregation spaces.

And in hindsight, this is a bit like what happened with Matrix: Resurrections, the fourth official incarnation of the saga that arrived in our rooms at the beginning of 2022 and which met with quite mixed reactions from the general public. There are those who have called it a disaster across the board, there are those who would have expected a film of a completely different caliber and there are also those who appreciated it while underlining some critical issues.

Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Ann Moss return as Neo and Trinity but in a different context than we knew him. The reason is clear already at the first viewing: Resurrections is not a simple sequel to the original trilogy but, rather, it is a meta-narrative experiment with the precise aim of deconstructing the epic of the original Matrix, of looking at it from a new point. of view, to reinterpret it according to a different vision.

On the other hand, the director Lana Wachowski (like her sister Lilly who has nothing to do with this project) has completed her own transition path and, in all probability, has taken advantage of the an opportunity to re-explore what was the most important work of his life and to communicate it to the public in an unprecedented way.

Let's talk about Sense8's Lana Wachowski and Cloud Atlas, a woman who has finally found herself and is free from the conditioning of an identity that has never fully reflected her. And the result, in our opinion, is truly enlightening.

Mind you, we are not saying that this is a perfect film or a product that can even replicate the global success of the first Matrix, simply because the ambitions are different.

Thomas Anderson is a video game developer, trapped in a fictional identity that someone else has created for him. Matrix: Resurrections is a 148-minute allegory about gender dysphoria, about the difficulty of accepting a fake world and a routine that someone else has decided for us, about the need to accept what we are deep inside in order to access our true potential, on the importance of love as the primary engine to overcome even the most impossible challenges.

We find Neo, or rather, the computer scientist Thomas Anderson once again interpreted by the immortal Keanu Reeves, the man so time seems to have stopped in 1999. We find it exactly as we had known it the first time but the context changes: this time Anderson is a game designer, immersed in the lines of code of a program conveniently called Binary that fails to complete as he would like.

And this is where Resurrections' metanarrative begins to show itself in all its power.

Good old Neo has become a living legend and in the field of videogame development, the mind behind the hit series 'Matrix', globally successful videogames based on fragments of memories stuck in his head.

There is a lot of action in this new chapter of the Matrix too but it is certainly not the main ingredient of the formula. Somehow, someone has made sure that 'the Chosen' is convinced that he is an ordinary human being, engaged in a seemingly normal life but who struggles to feel totally about him. Maybe the dozens of blue pills that are punctually prescribed by his Analyst have something to do with it? There is no time to think about it: the company he works for demands results, wants at any cost to repeat the success of the original Matrix trilogy.

'I know you said that the story is over for you but That's the way it is with stories: they never really end, 'says the company's director, Smith, in an interview with Thomas. 'Our parent company is willing to produce a sequel and will do it with or without us', continues the man, suggesting that even in the real world, sooner or later, we would still have seen a relaunch of the Matrix brand, perhaps in form. reboot as it was feared a few years ago, before the announcement of the start of work on Resurrections.

He is an iconic character who is bent on the market logic of a Hollywood that continually tries to find the formula of success of its most famous IPs, even if it means squeezing creative minds beyond all limits, whether they like it or not. An incredibly effective portrayal of how the film industry has changed over the past 23 years, no doubt about it.

But it's also the machines' attempt to keep Neo quiet, trapped in a simulated life, away from his affections and his true self, an entity that in the past had become so powerful that it destabilized their tyranny and is now in a state of mental and physical atrophy, immersed in an incubator somewhere outside of Matrix.

The talented Yahya Abdul-Mateen II plays a new version of Morpheus. Yet there is something that continues to haunt him, a voice that repeats that there is much more than it seems. And this voice finds a physical form in the person of Tiffany, or rather Trinity, once again brought to the screen by Carrie-Ann Moss.

Even the love of his life, the woman who more than anyone else believed in him has no memory of his past and is stuck in an artificially created everyday life. But Anderson seems to be able to look through them, he seems to have the ability to see who is really under the fictitious identity that the machines have given him.

The intervention of a new Morpheus, this time played by the talented Yahya Abdul- Mateen II taking over the role of Lawrence Fishburne will begin to tidy up Neo's life and open his eyes to what has happened in the sixty years since Zion's rebellion against machines.

Let's avoid anticipating the rest of the story so as not to spoil your taste for discovery but we would like to face one more emblematic last step to understand the poetics that Lana Wachowski has decided to adopt for Resurrections and that could explain why many do not have including this latest incarnation of the Matrix.

Do you have to find yourself in order to finally take flight? This is the first meeting between Neo and Bugs. The latter is an unprecedented character who witnessed an alleged suicide attempt by Thomas Anderson who, probably moved by memories of a distant past, tried to take flight by launching himself from the roof of a skyscraper.

Just then Bugs saw the true nature of Neo, the Chosen One, trapped in a fictional identity that prevents him from flying. The skill, as also seen in the course of the trailers, will return in the last act of the film, which Neo and Trinity will have met once again.

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This moment, after all, contains the entire message that Lana Wachowski wanted to convey with this film: we learn to fly only after fully understanding who we really are, supported by unconditional love of the people who believe in us.

Matrix: Resurrections sr all the unforgettable imagery of the Matrix to tell something different: it has changed a lot compared to the original trilogy and that is why it scares us so much. The action scenes, the 'kung-fu', the chases on the highways, have given way to a more mature story, centered on the characters and the impact they have had on the world.

It is a story of love, self-determination and personal fulfillment that has its roots in the personal experience of the director and of many other people who find themselves trapped every day in a life that they do not feel is their own or that someone else has chosen for them.

Just as Reloaded and Revolutions have been extensively re-evaluated over time, Resurrections will also need time to settle and be rediscovered by the general public, likely blinded by the enormous expectations associated with a return as important as that of the Matrix.

"It's so easy to forget how much noise the Matrix is ​​pumping into your head", but if you read between the lines, that noise can also become a pleasant sound.

Blue pill or red pill? The choice is always yours.

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