Of the major 2021 blockbusters still on the release schedule, there’s one big title that fans know very little about: the much-anticipated fourth Matrix, which is currently scheduled to release December 22 in theatres and on HBO Max. Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss are returning, along with a few new additions, but what the movie is called or what it looks like have remained a total mystery with just under four months left until release. Until now.
You can’t keep that keep that kind of information from the people who are going to screen your movie, which is why Warner Bros. announced at CinemaCon 2021 that the film, written and directed by Lana Wachowski, is called The Matrix: Resurrections. We also saw the first footage.
It begins with a very glossy looking city. A psychiatrist (Neil Patrick Harris) is sitting with a patient named Thomas. Thomas is Reeves and he’s having problems. He says he’s having dreams that aren’t quite dreams. We see him walking down the street with the green Matrix code. “Am I crazy?” he asks. “We don’t say that,” the doctor replies. Thomas is then sitting in a bathtub with a rubber duck on his head. He walks into a coffee shop and greets Trinity. “Have we met?” she asks as they shake hands.
We see that Thomas is taking blue pills at home. He looks into the sky and watches a bunch of birds flying. He’s trying to analyse it. Next he’s in an elevator with a bunch of people on their phones and he looks up at the reflection of everyone looking at screens. About here is where the song “White Rabbit” begins playing.
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II shows up as a character who looks just like Morpheus and offers Thomas a red pill. He meets a person with blue hair who has a tattoo of a rabbit. This all feel very familiar to us, the audience, because this is kind of just… The Matrix again?
Neo and the person with blue hair walk through a mirror. He’s in a café. Then he’s in a very serene dojo, which is on a lake, with Abdul-Mateen’s character. “The only thing that matters to you is still here,” he says. “You’ll never give up.” They begin to perform martial arts, and when Thomas hits Abdul-Mateen’s character hard in the chest and he flies out of the room.
Thomas and the blue-haired person are on a train. A bullet from a sniper is shot from far away and it flies through the train toward them. Tons of action scenes now cut very quickly. We see the fields of people plugged into the matrix. Trinity being unplugged in the matrix. The blue haired person jumping over a car in slow motion. Thomas holds bullets in the air.
A helicopter fires a missile at Thomas and Trinity, and Thomas changes its direction mid-air and shoots it into another helicopter. Then, Thomas is in an office with a man in a business suit played by Jonathan Groff. “You’re going back to where it all started,” he says. “Back to the Matrix.” Then the title: The Matrix, which fades away, and then Resurrections.
You very much get the sense that everything that happened before with Neo, Trinity, and Morpheus is happening again, just with minor changes. Characters fated to live the same stories over and over again. Or… something like that. We don’t really know. But damned if it didn’t look as big and action-packed as we’ve come to expect.
Co-starring Jada Pinkett Smith, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Neil Patrick Harris, Jessica Henwick, and Jonathan Groff, The Matrix: Resurrections opens December 16.