Film reviews - main page
Warning: this page contains spoilers!
I thought this was much better than the second Matrix film, although my lower expectations may have helped. Also, I rewatched the first two films at the weekend, whereas I hadn't seen the first film recently when I went to the cinema to see the second. This film did seem to be much more closely tied to the second than either of them were to the first.
Thinking back to the second film, I found the fights inside the Matrix quite tedious, so I was much more impressed by the stuff in the real world this time out. For one thing, they seemed to be going for a different effect in the action sequences - fear rather than excitement. Particularly the scene with the loaders: you're unarmed, pushing a big heavy trolley, and there are big things with lots of tentacles on the other side of that door that want to kill you. I realise that this may seem odd coming from me, since I enjoy superhero stories, but even then I lean more towards street-level stuff rather than people throwing mountains at each other. Mind you, I thought that the scene in the garage was quite nicely done, with the vertical symmetry of the pillars, so that you couldn't actually tell who was on the floor and who was on the ceiling at any given time.
I was surprised to see Niobe and co still alive, after what happened in the second film. But I'm glad they made it, and it was interesting to see their (sensible) plan go awry due to an accident.
I was a bit confused about the family on the train. I thought at first that they were coming from Zion into the Matrix, since the father mentioned something about being a recycling plant. That seemed like the most plausible explanation, but I was surprised that the humans would allow them. However, after discussing these with other people, it now looks as if the family was coming from the machine city.
I was thinking about the business in Angel with the little girl in the white room; she isn't human, she just chooses to look that way. And the comments in Star Trek TNG ("Measure of a Man"), where Commander Maddox says (about Data): "If he looked like a toaster, we wouldn't be having this discussion". I.e. the tendency to anthropomorphise. While I'm not suggesting that the daughter had any sinister motivations, it's worth bearing in mind that she (and the harmless looking keymaker in the second film) are not what they appear to be.
The fetish club was rather strange, although it did strike me that Trinity fitted in quite well there. So, that probably says more about her choice of clothes than anything else. More generally, looking at all three films, when I know that the characters aren't really wearing the outfits we see (i.e. that they are computer generated), it seems a lot like posing. I'm not sure why I react that way, since the same should apply if someone chooses to dress that way in real life (and arguably this way is better, since you only need to "get dressed" once).
Personally, I thought that the romance between Link and Zee was much more convincing than that between Neo and Trinity. It seemed as if Persephone's main purpose in the film was to say "Look at those two, you can see how obvious it is that they're very much in love", to compensate for the fact that it wasn't actually obvious.
It took me a minute to recognise Gina Torres (from Firefly and Angel) playing the sister-in-law - I assume she was in the second film too, but I just didn't recognise her there.
Something I didn't really pay attention to before - it's nice to see that Jason Locke actually has a sensible name, rather than a hacker alias. I also felt a lot more sympathy for him this time round, since I didn't envy him his job.
At the start of this film, it did occur to me that since it was the final film in the trilogy, that gave them more flexibility to kill off characters. However, the difference between this and other finales (e.g. the last episode of Voyager/DS9) is that the characters also perceived the end being imminent, so there was a strong feeling of "Let's pull out all the stops, because we don't need to plan ahead to tomorrow". E.g. ripping the hovercraft apart when it came through the gate.
I was surprised not to see any civilian robots, thinking of the relevant Animatrix shorts. Of course, just because we didn't see them, that doesn't mean they aren't there.
One other interesting implication here - since the machines were able to plug Neo into the Matrix, that implies that they could have done the same for Cypher (in the first film), so when he argued about it with Morpheus, he was actually correct.
Looking towards the future of the Matrix (not necessarily any future films/comics, just the construct itself), I think it could still have a purpose, like the holodeck in Star Trek. In particular, I can see it being quite a handy aid for people on diets - go in there, enjoy pigging out on a mega-sized pizza and Coke, but don't pick up any calories in the process.
There's nothing after the end credits, so don't bother waiting around unless you're interested in the credits themselves. One other note - there is a strobe sequence in the film at one point (which wasn't announced beforehand), so if that's likely to trigger epilepsy or anything then you may wish to be cautious.
This page was last updated on 2003-12-29 by John C. Kirk