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The Matrix (1999)
A strong marketing effort, but just wasn't entertaining at all for me.
I have to admit: I used to be a sucker for cheesy highbrow pretentious science fiction. In junior high school, I watched 2001: A Space Odyssey, Logan's Run, and read that kind of science fiction that is hailed as revolutionary in its interpretation of the human being as the bearers of the last step in evolution and all that. I was hooked upon a search for a higher state of intelligence and proving the endlessness of man's "understanding" of its universe. Then, I turned fourteen... and I saw Citizen Kane, Blade Runner, the Director's Cut, Metropolis, and Brazil. Well, not all in the same year, but you get the idea. The Matrix is the epitome of "higher power" transcendentalist science fiction epics in the way that it fuses stylized, substance-lacking, idealized action, big-budget effects, and two more film installments, but it has what all the other stylized epics that it ripped off lacked: twice as much of a lack of originality. The contrived nature of such films and, most especially, the lack of consideration for the characters' perceptions and emotions makes me wonder if moviegoers these days are the living dead or not. I watched this film with hopes for something better. Originally, I had the assumption that it was one of these "2001" films, but I wiped it away for the sake of taking a friend of mines advice that it would change the way I think. The movie had me on the verge of tears; not because it had hit an emotional cord or kept my heart racing, but because it kept me thinking that virtually anyone with a super 8 could produce an even better story, but isn't getting a chance. Instead, two members of the Landmark Forum are using the ideals they were infused with by some seminar teacher, with a pocket full of their money and no concept of his or her own creation to offer whatsoever, to make successful movies with Warner Bros. To think I used to like this kind of nonsense... thank Fritz Lang for Metropolis, Larry and Andy! You owe him a percentage.