The Matrix was released over twenty years ago. It was a game changer for action films and special effects back in 1999. And it made a generation of teenagers including yours truly) beg their parents for floor-length leather jackets.
One could explain the Matrix itself simplistically as a form of augmented reality, where humans are plugged into a faux world – most of whom are unaware that that the real world is well and truly fucked.
Two decades later augmented reality is becoming increasingly prevalent for real, which begs the question – does The Matrix still actually hold up?
Movies With Mikey dives into this question in his latest video for FilmJoy. I won’t spoil his deep dive for you, but he does open by making an incredibly good point.
“The Matrix is about waking up for the first time as your true self”. Meanwhile, a bunch of dudes in suits are trying to suppress that.
“My name is Neo.”
Considering the political and social landscapes we’re facing in 2019 – this perspective seems more pertinent than ever. On the one hand, the internet has allowed people to connect easier with one another and find support groups, so we have seen the rise of people coming out as queer and trans. In fact the creators of The Matrix, the Wachowski siblings, have both transitioned.
On the flip side, actual Nazis are also becoming increasingly normalised again.
“It’s a movie about freedom and equality in the face of tyranny,” says Mikey. Right on.
Enjoy this look into the history of The Matrix, the impact it had and how it tracks today. Oh and our boy Keanu casually training for the film despite a spinal fusion that was causing some leg paralysis.
This article was originally published 17/6/19.