Reactions to The Matrix Resurrections, the new long-gestating revisitation of the turn-of-the-century series, have been extremely strong and extremely mixed in ways that I don’t feel like quantifying. I’ve been torn between the desire to write about it and the desire to not actually dig through and really understand criticisms of the film that appear to be too varied for any kind of systematic approach.
The core of it seems to be that most everyone takes The Matrix really personally, which makes a ton of sense – the film’s central metaphor can be applied to just about any institution or cultural norm, and it can be a bit of a Rorschach test. How you read this film, which parts of it are important to you, it says something about you. Instead of trying to respond to points that appear to be completely different from one person to the next, I wanted to spend some time on what makes The Matrix personal to me and why The Matrix Resurrections ends up flowing so naturally from that.
These observations came from revisiting the sequel material for the first time since seeing them in theaters, but it’s also spelled out in a friend’s longform video essay here that keenly predicts what we end up seeing in Resurrections – relevant bit starts at 36:20. I’ll try not to repeat them too much, but there will be some overlap.Continue reading