1999: The Matrix

The Matrix - Screenshot of the famous GLMatrix...

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It was a tough choice to select the Monumental Movie of 1999, what with there being so many brilliant movies from this year. However, I made the decision to go with The Wachowski Brothers’ classic, The Matrix. Although to many, it may just be seen as another action-packed gun-fest, this is not the case at all. The Matrix, starring Keanu Reeves as Neo, Laurence Fishburne as Morpheus, and Carrie-Anne Moss as Trinity, focuses around a computer hacker, Neo, who soon learns that the life he has seemingly been living all along, isn’t what he thought it was, and in fact, was all an artificial life, in which his mind had been trapped within. Morpheus, awakes Neo to this realisation, right after one of many famous scenes from this movie – the choice between the red pill, and the blue pill; whether he wakes up to the bleak reality that is, or to stay in his fake world that isn’t real – The Matrix.

Neo soon comes to witness the reality that is, a dark world, overtaken by The Machines, who are artificially breeding humans as an energy source for their sentient, yet mechanical existence. A small human rebellion that remains hidden on Earth, living in the city of Zion, are all that’s left, in the war between humans and machines. Neo, along with the rest of the team, must go back in to the Matrix, in order to destroy The Agents, a set of incredibly powerful computer programs, with the primary objective of destroying Neo and the remainder of the human race.

This movie is full of classic scenes. In fact, almost every scene of this movie is a classic, but a few of the ones which stand out a little more than the rest include the bank vault shoot-out. This is one of the scenes that revolutionised the action genre – shooting the crap out of the bad guys, whilst in slow-motion, doing crazy flips and cartwheels and shit. Proof that this movie appeals to our adrenanline-filled, gun-toting manic side, as well as our sc-fi nerdy sides. The scene where Neo is waiting to speak to the Oracle (the now deceased, Gloria Foster), where he has a conversation with one of the other ‘potentials’, a young child, is probably the most defining scene of the movie. The young, gifted child makes Neo realise that anything is possible, with the line ‘there is no spoon.’, which indicates that in the Matrix, nothing exists, but his mind, and so he must change only himself.

The movie ends with Neo and Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) fist-fighting to the death. Smith appears to have won, but Neo, having finally learnt the true nature of what the Matrix really is, rises up, and destroys Smith, combining himself with Smith, becoming more powerful than ever imagined. The war isn’t over yet, but now the Humans have a better chance than ever in the war to reclaim the Earth that once was theirs.

Now, although this may sound similar to movies such as The Terminator, what with Humans vs Machines and what not, and that it just seems like another action-packed movie, there really is so much more to it. Although movies such as Fight Club question our sanity, and movies such as American Beauty tackle the dramatic and life-defining aspects of life, The Matrix, questions life, and our existence. Yes, it has a science-fiction basis to it, but it opens our minds up and allows us to think ‘outside the box’ in such a way, which many other movies have not managed to do. The Matrix, revolutionised movies; it was the first of its kind. The classic line, “There is no spoon.” signifies this aspect, focusing on the idea of what is and isn’t real, and that with the brilliant capacity of our minds, anything is possible. It is one of those amazing movies that inspire us, as humans, to strive to be more than just ordinary, and to realise that we have the potential to be whoever we want to be. This movie has the power that so many movies do not hold, to make us evaluate our ideas on what we perceive to be real, and what reality is.  This is definitely a complex movie, but one that you need to watch.

By Manpreet Singh


One Comment on “1999: The Matrix”

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