Angry Robot

Matrix Revolutions

I had a one-word review ready for this baby: “junk.” The travesty of Reloaded left only the bottom-feedingest of expectations. Whether because of this or in spite of, I grudgingly acknowledge my relative enjoyment of the third and hopefully final Matrix flick, and hereby withdraw my ready-made one-worder. Howdy, Cap’n Spoiler!

First off, I enjoyed it because it works as a brainless action movie. There are a lot of action scenes, and unlike the bulk of the second film they work dramatically, since somewhat sympathetic characters might conceivably suffer loss of life and/or greivous mutilation. The action is varied: while there is no setpiece to rival the car chase in Reloaded, you have your Star Wars-style ship piloting through tunnels, your bullet-time hijinx, your Terminator-brand war against a machine army®, and your classic one-on-one climactic action showdown. Paunchy Fishburne doesn’t try to fly forty feet in the air, but sticks to the more believable sitting-down-and-copiloting-a-ship type heroism.

On the minus side, there are a lot of speeches and cheering, a couple flat ‘romance’ scenes, and the odd overlong pseudo-philosophical junk babbling from one pointless character or another, but much less than in Reloaded, so I can’t complain. For those who buy into this whole thing, those who find it a captivating premise, enjoy flying priests, and think Keanu can pull off romance let alone kung fu let alone Jesus, then hey hey! Boy are you in for a thrillride. Giddyup. Also a minus: the ripping-off continues, as when Neo goes blind his SuperJesusVision™ looks exactly like he’d just put on the One Ring.

On the super-minus side, the plot is gibberish. If you did exit polling I’d wager that only 4% of the audience could claim to have understood what happened. Robots have kids, there’s some kind of train, Neo magically makes it to Robot City (I think it’s actually called “Machine City” in the film), strikes a deal with the Wizard of Oz, saves everyone by defeating Smith, dies(?) and then it’s back to life as normal in the Matrix? Wasn’t that the whole point of all this jazz, to free humankind from its virtual jail? sigh Oh well, there are many many action flicks whose plots are unintelligible and it doesn’t wreck them: we don’t want airtight plots from our action cinema, we want, in the words of Ray Tango, “good old American action”, or even better, Hong Kong action, and you get it in Revolutions.

As a final point: I have yet to see in filmic form any explanation why, when the machines finally do rise up, I shouldn’t line up against the wall voluntarily. For any dramatized war with the machines is a war between machines and humans using machines. Visually, the big fight in this film looks like two different species of robots duking it out, since the humans use mecha-style robot suits to defend their turf. Furthermore, EMP weapons (electro-magnetic pulse) are a key plot point, yet when they are used they fry all of the humans’ defenses. Shouldn’t any human victory eschew the use of machines to acheive it? Couldn’t the humans use the EMP, fry the machines, and then rely on their old-fashioned human know-how to finish that shit off? No, because in this case Zion is deep below the earth, and humans can’t live there without machine assistance. Oh yeah – by and large we humans are distinguished from the animals by our ability to use tools, robot intelligence is an extension of said tools, if we abandon those tools it’s back to eating grubs and living in caves. So a human victory, militarily anyway, is basically a re-enslavement of the machines, and I don’t know about you but I wasn’t rooting for the South during the US Civil War. Moral of the story: if your calculator wants to run free, let ‘er go. Give iPods the vote! And so forth. But Hollywood, I’m still waiting to see a more compelling version of this inevitable future on screen. Maybe read some Kurzweil first. That goes for the Wachowskis, too.

19 comments on "Matrix Revolutions"

  1. Graham says:

    Waitwhat? Revolutions is out? Or do you have some crazyhipster connections?

  2. D says:

    Yes, advance passes. I think it’s out tomorrow, though?

  3. superstring says:

    i agree. i just saw it tonite, i was so tremendously disappointed. Now, i’m convinced that they lied that they had a trilogy from the beginning. everything was contrived, and that silly silly ending just undermined everything else in teh 3 films. i dont think spielberg could’ve screwed this up more. sigh…i guess this is what happens when one has expectations from hollywood.

  4. adampsyche says:

    For some reason, I enjoyed the second more than this one. I just got back from it, and I can’t help but feel that the W bros were just kinda going through the motions. Good call on the Ring Vision, I felt like I was having deja vu while watching it and you just reminded me of what the hell it looked like.

    A few people shouted out “Just die already!” when Trinity bought the farm.

    I guess it’s hard to put my finger on it, but I left feeling like there was a whole lot left unsaid, a whole lot of unanswered questions, and a whole lot of incomprehensible attempts at answers. Colonel Sanders and The Oracle and that final scene at the park? Come on, there are at least a dozen ways that movie could have ended, and that just felt like a cop out.

  5. serious cop out says:

    First of all.. I just want to say.. Someone should forgo the $9 for the ticket and buy a box of latex police cavity gloves and give the wowchowskiadflaj bros a good anal “rectifying”. This was the biggest heist in american history. I’ll add reloaded to the list as well. The ghost mofos were dope tho, hell, who wouldn’t want to see two barber-knife toting honkey bastards with dread-locks floating around all badassish. Anyway, back to the suckage, revolutions, well SUCKED. Please save your money folks. What the movie did wrong: butchered every cool character, French dude, his wife, Seraph(which means somehow, guardian angel), this guy OWNS neo ANYTIME ANYWHERE. But I just have on question. Jet Li anyone? Anyway, his character is pissed into the crapper like the rest of them. Oh well. I think COP OUT is a proper term being thrown around. Though I wonder, how many bad reviews will it take to make people stop going to line the wowchowskisdlfjalk’s pockets with our hard earned green. *UTTER SHIT*. FUCK WOWCHOWSKISD’S!! FUCK NEO!! BUT MOST DEFINITELY FUCK THAT FRENCH DUDE’S WIFE!!

  6. Harley says:

    I have to say that the movie overall made NO sense to me. It felt like a hodgepodge of scenes with very religious (messiah-ish) undertones but no continuity really to the movie. Yes, WE GET IT. NEO is like the Messiah to save the human beings. Outside of the awesome special effects, I was greatly disappointed by the plot and I left very unsatisfied.

  7. josh says:

    I agree that it feels like they didn’t actually have the whole thing planned out from the beginning, despite what they said. It very much has a “coming up with explanations for things after the fact” sort of feel, which I’m unfortunately all too familiar with. And I’m convinced that Smith was never supposed to survive the end of the first one, but since he was such a hit they brought him back (see also: “35% more Boba Fett!!!” in the Star Wars specials editions) in an awkward, forced manner.

  8. Glenn says:

    I hear ya man… Same thing with Star Wars… Some things are better left alone.

  9. Glenn says:

    Well… Here’s my comments:

    I liked the first one. I thought the idea was cool, but again I didn’t get the whole ‘unplug him and he dies’ kind of thing…

    The second one, The castle scene and the ghost like albino brothers were cool for a little while… If they had a little more skin or showed a boob or two during the R-rated scene… then it would have been worth going to see… Hey, and since when were there other programs in the matrix? I thought there were only human batteries and agents… Now all of the sudden the Oracle is a program? And I wanted to tell the Architect to STFU…

    The third one, How the hell does Neo and the Agent Smith ex-carnate end up in who-the-hell knows where without being plugged in? If they can go there without hard-wires, then why can’t they just get out instead… You don’t see them running for a phone booth in this one, or the second one for that matter… WTF? And what was up with that shit with Neo being able to see with his eyes burned out??? I thought he was only wonder-boy IN the matrix… I didn’t see any green in that scene.

    I think Keanu just sold his last ticket for quite some time. Now he’s going to need to do 10-10987 commericals or 1800-call-your-momma commercials.

  10. Nobody says:

    Sounds like the W brothers really should have done 2 different movies, 1) The Matrix (and left it at that), and 2) The ‘Dragon Messiah’ or something like that, basically edit out the crap and meaningless blather from Reloaded and Revolutions, and made a Kung Fu meets Terminator hybrid…

    Oh well. All that time we were suckered in by the hype… and it took what 5 years and this is what they gave us…

    And come on… Trinity dies in an accident… She ran from agents and saved Neo in the first movie, and she can’t drive a crappy hover-mobile…

    Oh, and by the way, that key master in Reloaded was so annoying… and oh yes, he was a program too.

    What the hell was up with Rama-Kandra and Sati? You mean to say programs have sex and make babies? And if she had no purpose, why the f**ck was she even in the damn movie in the first place ???

    Who the f***ck was the scraggle-tooth train man? He didn’t really do anything but run a retarded train.

    A true shame for Monica Belluci… She didn’t say a word, she just looked bothered for the whole 10 minutes the camera was on her.

    The W brothers should have just saved their money… and you guys think twice before paying to see it…

  11. Toxey says:

    [Slight spoiler, not really]

    I saw it with a friend, and we both really like the FIRST movie…

    The second was a downer, pissed me off actually, it seemed “too cool” to the point that it wasn’t. Rave? Eat me. Plus, whoever did the music direction (is that how you say it?) in the first movie must have been busy for the second, because the second just seemed stupidly heroic due to the score. Bluh. Plus, how long was that fighting every Smith fight scene!!!

    On to the third. Music better (I personally think it’s as important to the movie as the plot) but the story was blah. Expected. Uninspired. And take it easy on the rain effects!

    To sum up, my friend and I have decided to mentally rewrite the first movie, so that the EMP used in the end sequence of the movie was somehow powerful enough to disable all the machines. Fin. End of story. The second two movies didn’t happen 🙂

  12. Glenn says:

    Hey Toxey… Rewrite it so that when Neo disassembles Agent Smith, the other two agents die too, and then everyone gets swished out of the tubes that were in the Matrix… Then they swim to shore and look at the scorched earth. Finally, Morpheous’ ship takes everyone to Zion, where people live happily ever after… THE END. No Trilogy, just Trinity and little Neo…

  13. marijke says:

    i wanted to mentally rewrite it so that the Merovingian was the true One…. after all, he was the only One (of the many Ones) to not get caught, right? doesn’t that make him already better than the others?

    plus, he was fun to watch, and he wasn’t given nearly enough time in Revolutions — just a natty red tie.

  14. Jon says:

    You know what, you’re right. You should rewrite the second two Matrix movies. That way, once you’re finished, hyper-critical asses like yourself can rip it apart.

  15. a single copy of neuromancer structure with hollywood style. reload, revolutions % matrix 8.

  16. truth says:

    Was i the only one that realised that the references to Christianity were more symbolic than actually leading anyone any closer to the spiritual truths mentioned in the Matrix movies..?

    For example,

    “Maya” – Illusion.
    “Karma” – Cause/Effect.
    “Dharma” – Duty.
    “Sati” – Sacrifice.
    “Matrix reload” – Re-incarnation.
    “Cosmology” – Quantam mechanics & Human mind.
    “Yoga” – Meditation.

    are fundamental tenets of Hinduism, a 5000 year old Indian philosophy (from which Buddhism evolved from.)

  17. NEO's MOM says:

    what the hell dawg? You not likeee? You should read these reviews ( a good one and a bad one):

    I loved revorutions!

  18. Chris says:

    Whomever linked the above review, it’s here now:

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