April 2, 1999
April 2, 1999
This film is so green. And as Kermit would say, it ain’t easy being green.
When I say this film is green, I literally mean that the color green permeates the film. Not only is green the dominant color of the sets and background, but even the lighting in many scenes is green. The Matrix is a leprechaun’s dream. There is the bright neon green of the computer screens, the mangy bluish green of the real world hidden beneath the Matrix and the chartreuse of the oracle’s abode. Green symbolizes many things. It can symbolize envy, such as the envy that Cipher had for the poor souls living in the dreamworld of the Matrix. Green can symbolize life and fertility, which ironically, is something that crew of the Nebachadnezer was seeking to restore to the human race. Green also symbolizes money, which this film is going to make a lot of.
Besides color, two major themes appeared throughout The Matrix. One was a Messianic theme – Neo as the savior of the human race. The word ‘Neo’ means new and Neo was always referred to as ‘The Chosen One.’ My boyfriend noted that it more relates to the story of Moses than Christ, because Neo is to lead his people out of bondage – a people that were born into slavery. Also, when Morpheus reveals the real world hidden beneath the Matrix to Neo, he says, “Welcome to the desert.”
The other theme running through this film was a drug parable. Beginning with the obvious statement to ‘follow the white rabbit,’ it is as much of a drug story as Alice in Wonderland or Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Neo is searching for Morpheus (enlightenment), which of course affects him professionally and socially. When he finds Morpheus, Neo is given a choice to take the blue pill (naive, ignorant sobriety) or the red pill (ugly reality). He chooses the red pill and his eyes are opened forever, a process which cannot be reversed. He will never look at the world the same way again and now feels compelled to save the world from the fake layer of surrounding it. Sounds a lot like the Acid-induced Hippy philosophy of the sixties to me…
I was not looking forward to seeing this film. I was expecting a rehash of Johnny Pneumonic, which by the way, sucked a great deal. I was pleasantly surprised to find that someone had put a great deal of thought into this film. Keanu is still Keanu – he invoked the memory of Ted ‘Theodore’ Logan more than once in this film. But I must say, this is the first time that I have watched a Keanu Reeves film and wanted to bone him afterwards…
Rating – R
Runtime – 136 minutes
Genre – Keanu
Director(s) – The Wachowski Brothers
Writer(s) – The Wachowski Brothers
Actor(s) – Keanu Reeves, Carrie Moss, Laurence Fishburne, Joe Pantoliano, Hugo Weaving
BOB Rating – Three BOBs
Favorite Quote – "You take chicken, for example: maybe they couldn't figure out what to make chicken taste like, which is why chicken tastes like everything!" - Mouse (Matt Doran)