U.S., 1999, 136 min, 4K DCP, Dir. the Wachowskis, Rated R, Warner Bros.
“An apocalypse of kinetic joy. Like it or not, this is one movie that words don't come close to approximating.” – Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
Neo (Keanu Reeves) is a hacker recruited by the enigmatic Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) to fight against oppressive machines who’ve enslaved humanity in a simulated world called the ‘Matrix’ in order to harvest their physical bodies as an energy source. Whoa. The Matrix is an amalgamation of three of the Wachowskis' main loves: anime, philosophy, and cyberpunk. Pulling from the works of Mamoru Oshii (Ghost in the Shell), Lewis Carroll (Alice in Wonderland), Jean Baudrillard (Simulacra and Simulation), and others, the Wachowski’s concocted a groundbreaking film that pays homage to its forefathers but is far from derivative, standing shoulder to shoulder with the great works that preceded it. Noted sci-fi author William Gibson described the film as “the ultimate ‘cyberpunk’ artifact.” 20 years later, The Matrix’s influence still reverberates throughout the cinematic landscape, not least in part thanks to masterful fight scenes choreographed by martial artist Yuen Woo-ping (Jackie Chan’s Drunken Master; Iron Money; Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), revolutionary visual effects that include the film’s iconic ‘bullet time’ sequences, and a complex, layered narrative that still raises questions about the nature of our reality.
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