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Matrix 4: The Search for More Money
I hate the action pieces in Reloaded so much. Neo demonstrates quite forcefully that he’s way past them by the end of the first, but Matrix is at least nominally an action franchise. It still needs fights and Neo to fight them. So we get “upgraded” agents. There’s a bowling ball and pins sound effect in the Smith brawl.
Michael Barnes wrote: The second was almost like that plus willfully pretentious, cerebral 1970s sci-fi, also opening up the concept of The Matrix to accommodate ghosts and vampires. It also sticks one of the greatest chase scenes in film history (better than those we saw in the 70s) right in the middle of it like it’s no big thing.
It’s stupid and lazy, but the greater problem is that the fights don’t matter and have no consequences. Neo doesn’t need to fight anymore, so they need to work overtime to keep him out of the action. No one even gets dirty. One Smith loses his sunglasses in the brawl. That’s it for a fight that includes multiple men getting clocked by concrete.
Morpheus and Smith in the bathroom in the first was amazing. No one talks about it, but it was amazing. There was a purpose. There were consequences. It told a story in miniature. Neo and Seraph? Just needed a fight to bookend a bad a Oracle talk.
It was an embarrassment from a team that had already proven they knew better.
I don't mind the subsequent films because I can see what they were trying to do, but they lack the menace, tension, and rhythm of the first film almost entirely. The Animatrix has some good stuff that could have been explored further, but nothing that truly departs from the first film's vision in a way that would have been enough to carry a feature film. I own DVDs/Blu-rays of all of them, because I like their stuff, but I rarely go back to watch them, as I've seen the first one many times and the others don't really motivate me.
- content-wise, everything interesting is taken from somewhere else, like PK Dick or Hong Kong Cinema (or a trip to a Berlin club)
- the first Matrix was part of a series of 'Jesus movies' compiled by a theology professor in Germany
- I love Speed Racer
(posted from the high seas)
Michael Barnes wrote: That’s actually not the case. I might be misremembering exact details, but I believe they pitched The Matrix with something like a 400 page script with storyboards and had pretty much everything in place from the beginning. This is why Reloaded/Revolutions were shot practically at the same time. I’m sure things were changed after the first film and it’s success but it definitely was not a JJ Abrams make it up as you go along thing.
Right. I didn't mean to imply that it was an on-the-spot thing. I know they had a background set up. But the first film was a complete story; beginning, middle, end. It could easily have stood alone with no sequels required. The story was told and the message was delivered. But then it was a blockbuster hit, so the story had to be extended. As good DMs will know, here's a difference between setting/background and actual storytelling. They told their first story in a succinct fashion. It was done. Then they had to crack it open and tell some more, which is where the later two films broke down, IMO.
I still watch Reloaded. I end up toughing it out to get to the car chase scene, then since I only have about 30 minutes left in the movie I end up watching it to the end. I just skip Revolutions.
I'll watch Matrix:4, but I'm not stoked to see it.
Reloaded was in the summer of chase scenes. IIRC Terminator 3 came out that year as well and at least one other car chase heavy film, Bad Boys 2 maybe?
Aside from that though I loved the film and what it did, the look of it, the ideas. But I remember bouncing off the messiah thing hard; it almost ruined the rest of it for me - to the extent that I went to see the next one only under great sufferance and felt completely justified afterwards. I don't think I saw the third or any of the other material. I've watched the original again a few times and still enjoy it on the whole, although I still just wish it wasn't a stupid chosen one narrative. I suppose to watch the 4th I'll have to watch the others too, not sure if that will happen.
Edit: getting Force Awakens vibes, since this trailer is basically "hey we remade the first one, you liked that movie right?" Remains to be seen how much of the movie is actually that and how much they lean into the garbage from the sequels, but if nothing else it looks like some fun fan service to be had.
Edit edit: if this entire movie is an elaborate setup to deliver a huge middle finger to the human garbage who coopted the red pill thing in recent years I'm okay with that too.
At least I can expect some well shot action scenes, hopefully not full on CGI cartoons.