4 Stars

The Matrix has you, and me, and him, and her. Apparently it has almost everybody. The theatre house that I saw it in was packed to the gills, and it was a Friday afternoon! I wonder if anyone has tried to correlate drops in worker productivity to major theatrical releases. Or at least, drops in technology production when sci-fi movies are released.

Matrix: Reloaded - Neo and Trinity

The film is visually stunning. An amazing spectacle of special effects wizardry intermingled into an admittedly weak storyline. The first Matrix movie was fresh and unexpected, since we didn’t know what the Matrix was then. When Morpheus says that the Matrix is the world that has been pulled over our eyes to blind us from the truth–we were shocked, we cared, we were interested.

The plot of this installment is simple, in the real world, the machines are making their way down to the city of Zion to destroy the city and its quarter million inhabitants. Morpheus says that the prophecy states that Neo will bring end to the war between the humans and machines, and destroy the Matrix.

Neo goes into the Matrix to speak to the Oracle about fulfilling the prophecy and destroying the Matrix. There he finds out that the Oracle and other entities in the Matrix are actually rogue programs created by the machines that inhabit the Matrix. He also finds that Agent Smith is no longer an official agent of the Matrix, but is now a also a rogue program that is intent in gaining revenge or power from Neo–his intentions are never made perfectly clear. In fact, the intentions of all the rogue programs are never made clear, and there are a bunch of them in this film.

There’s a lot of things about this movie that don’t make perfect sense. Do we even care about the people in Zion? What’s so great about Zion, anyway? All they do is rave and bicker with each other, except when they are not worshipping Neo like the next messiah or having raves next to lava pools and shit. Morpheus is preachy in this one, really preachy. Hell, even the Architect of the Matrix is preachy. By this point you almost want the Matrix to be “reloaded” and Zion to be completely destroyed, fuck ’em.

There’s absolutely no denouement–it is the first of two parts that will be continued when the next film, Matrix: Revolutions, is released in November. Reloaded is weaker than the first in storyline and frustratingly preachy in parts, but still a visual delight worth watching. It is a landmark film that must still be seen to be believed, but it falls short of capturing our imaginations as the first one did four years ago.

Update (5/19/2003): Be sure to read Larry O’Brien’s review.


  1. the stoyline was weak and there was lots of things left unexplained. But I the main reason I went to see the movie was for the action scenes and they did not disappoint. great film.

    #1 by mentiso — May 17, 2003 @ 1:16 am

  2. How disappointed was I in Reloaded? This much: http://www.thinkingin.net/stories/2003/05/19/matrixReloadedStunninglyBad.html

    #2 by Larry — May 19, 2003 @ 1:02 am

  3. weak, lack of plot, i say NOT! reloaded was awesome!! i was thinking about it for days after and i went and bought the first Matrix so that i could trace back all the details and get a more in-depth perspective. i can’t wait til revolution!

    #3 by shannon — May 21, 2003 @ 4:41 am

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