Neo discovers that somehow he is able to use his powers in the real world too and that his mind can be freed from his body, as a result of which he finds himself trapped on a train station between the Matrix and the Real World. Meanwhile, Zion is preparing for the oncoming war with the machines with very little chances of survival. Neo's associates set out to free him from The Merovingian since it's believed that he is the One who will end the war between humans and the machines. What they do not know is that there is a threat from a third party, someone who has plans to destroy both the worlds. Written by
Within the first ten minutes of this film it seemed that Revolutions wasn't going to be the redemption of Matrix Reloaded I had hoped for. The cod-philosophy was back with a vengeance but within even less substance then the supposed profound musings of the previous films while the first few action scenes seemed crudely tacked on set-pieces used as weak attempts to move between the poor-excuses for plot devices. As the film progresses it gives a disproportionate amount of focus on secondary characters with whom we have little-to-no attachment to, unless of course you have succumbed to the cynical cash-in ploys of the Animatrix and the Enter The Matrix computer game, but even then their backstories are less than fascinating and add little to the film. It is as if the Wachowski brothers have run out of ideas for the main characters, who, without the fast-paced world of the matrix to play with, reveal themselves as increasingly 2-dimensional, only defined by each one's singular purpose - i.e. Morpheus' faith in Neo as saviour, Trinity's love for Neo, or Neo simply being Neo, the all-asskicking super-dude we all secretly wish and/or think we might be. The Wachowski brothers appear to be introducing as many other (also 2-dimensional) characters as possible into the fray in order to distract us from the poor development of the series' central characters. What we are left with is an onslaught of scenes with characters in peril which we ultimately don't care about, and that do not make for exciting viewing. In fact, I personally was looking forward to the potential deaths of certain of the Zion-based characters rather than fearing their demise, notably "The Kid" of Animatrix fame and the Captain who's main role in the film is to shout "Aaaargh!" while firing large guns (I won't tell you whether either of them actually do get it or not). Neo and Trinity are given little screen-time for the bulk of the film as they go about their separate mission while Morpheus literally takes a backseat to Niobe, a character for which we care little for unless we have been lining the Wachowski brother's pockets further by buying Enter The Matrix.
The action scenes themselves can err the viewer towards boredom - there's only so much interest or fear to be gleaned from admittedly well-crafted but still obviously CG creations. The sheer scale of the employment of CG creations in Zion unfortunately makes the whole battle seem too fake to be truly involving. Much of the film is not unlike watching a friend playing on his X-box but not being given a turn yourself.
The film's attempts at plot hinge on the themes of love, death and perhaps even a slightly Jungian themed idea on the dichotomy of the self in terms or Neo and Agent Smith's relationship to one another and the inception of a twisted humanity into the program, Smith, who's menacing role is inevitably driven towards a pantomime villain styled performance. The love theme is somewhat overplayed and seemingly without anything to say other than "Love's great, isn't it?" while we are yet to see really why there is any love between the dull, lifeless characters of Trinity or Neo. The climax of their love in this film is embarrassingly acted and overlong, releasing a few laughs from the more cynical of us in the cinema. Moreover, the much anticipated answers to the looming questions of the second film and the conclusion of the series are glossed over with vague dialogue masquerading as profound sentiment, ultimately leaving the viewer to come up with their own explanations as the Wachowski brother's appear incapable of doing so themselves. Oh, and they never do explain why Neo's intra-matrix powers have deteriorated from the first film (where he ultimately became capable of rising from the dead to invade and destroy the agent programs from inside) into merely being a better-dressed version of Superman. The questions of free-will and metaphysical freedom touched upon in the first film are largely ignored in favour of a simple fight for survival against the evil machines invading Zion and Neo's battle with the cyber-bogeyman that is Agent Smith instead of the potential for a psychic/psychological battle with the matrix program itself - a potential for a mindblowing effects-fest if ever there was.
All in all the concluding part of the Matrix trilogy comes over as a bloated, overlong ending tacked on to reloaded with few to zero new ideas, less engaging action scenes and an ending that may well have been conceived on the back of an envelope while on the way to work. The brothers did a masterful job of melding science fiction, comic and anime influences into a thoroughly entertaining, ground-breaking and thoughtful film in the original Matrix but have stretched the concept too far in a quest for a bigger bank balance. Although kids with a short attention span may well find the blaring gunfire and many explosions of Revolutions appealing they were much more entertaining when more firmly routed in the artificial world of the Matrix itself. Upon leaving the cinema the thought I was left with was whether the real matrix controlling and shaping what we think is that of the dumbed-down entertainment industry, force-feeding us brainless, unimaginative films to pacify our minds.
45 of 82 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?