11 November 2003

Why I Liked Matrix: Revolutions and, in Unrelated News, Why I Need Psychiatric Help


--Matrix: Revolutions was a huge success in my book. I am going to detail why for all of you, as this has caused much controversy, but will warn you that if you have not yet seen the film and don't want to spoil it for yourself, please scan through until you get to the second set of stars (****). This will denote the end of my spoiling.

*************SPOILERS ABOUND BEYOND THIS POINT*************************************************

1) Let me start with the things I didn't like--

--The scene where Trinity dies is way, way too f*cking long and drawn out. They talked too much. Note to Wabalooski Brothers: people who have been impaled by large pieces of metal generally can't talk for five minutes. Say goodbye and let her die. This moment almost took me out of the movie.

--The lady who played The Oracle in the first two films died before she could finish all of her scenes for the second installment, so they had to go out and get someone else. The reason for why she looked different in the third was paltry and useless because it added NOTHING. I want to make this clear: the Washavinskis would have been better served to just not mention anything about her appearance than do what they did.

--These two are about it.

2) Why I did like it:

--I thought the whole third story wrapped up the parts of the overall trilogy without giving you every single answer. I like very much that it combined parts of various religious theology (Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism) with an emphasis also on secular philosophy. I also don't think for a second that they talked too much, as is oft a complaint. One of the big themes of the movie is free thought...so they were apt to speak and think freely. Did anyone notice that much of the philosophical questions posed were answered during the fight scenes? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? When this comes out on DVD, rent it and rewatch it for this reason if no other.

--I would have been lost with all the computer programming jargon if I hadn't done a little bit of searching to understand its connection to philosophy and theology. One of the major pulls of the film is that it takes so much from the Biblical story of the Great War in Heaven, the story of with which I am fascinated. It also helped me greatly to read up on the history of the Merovingian...and not the ones that ruled France in the 7th Century. It might be interesting to some of you to read about them here. It also helped to research oracles a bit, and not just The Delphic Oracle. There are also strong connections from The Oracle to The Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene.

My point? I am immeasurably impressed at the amount of research and detail the Warbonski Brothers put into this work. It's depth is incredible and if you are even slightly versed in any of these studies I believe it makes the film much more interesting.

--I have always been a big fan of the old martial arts movies. Even the sound effects. The Wac...ah, f*ck it, the W. Bros. were the same way and even used some of the techniques during filming. In the scene in Reloaded where Neo fights the hundreds of Smiths, they played with different sound effects, like toppling dominoes. I just think that's neat. I can't think of any other word but neat. Neat is the word I'm using. And I'm overly impressed by the fact that the W. Bros. and their team came up with a brand new cinematrographic/directorial/special effectual technique, something no one does these days. Have you noticed the proliferation of Bullet Time (TM) technology since the first film? It's everywhere. The whole concept blows my mind. I consider the final fight scene between Neo and the Smith to be one of the best things I've ever seen on a big screen, in scope and in execution because I really think it was appropriate and, though it was highly special effects laden, not overdone.

--Finally, and this is my biggest point, one of my favorite Conquerable Postulates is that Free Will and Fate coexist. Think about it: everything we do is inevitable and nothing we have done is can be altered simply because we do not possess the capacity to travel back and forth in time. So all of the choices we make in life lead to a point. In the moment, we can make one decision or another, but that choice can neither lead us to where the other choice would have nor could we backtrack and do it over. Therefore, though we make our choices freely with each passing moment, we could never change them, and being that you can't go back, you are always set in one path.

I have no idea what I just said. The point is, the W. Bros. offer a story in which the hero has a choice but ultimately cannot alter time and space. There will be a cycle that goes on. Does it ever stop? When did it ever start. These are eternal questions, and I think important questions. This story gave me another way to think about them, to contextualize in my world.

Plus, I'm a sucker for this particular story, most popularized by Jesus Christ. You know how it goes: a stanger walks into town where everyone is afraid of him except a few, and these few befriend him and learn from him, and then he begins to affect the public, but there is a misunderstanding, and he is either run out of town or killed, and only afterwards do the people realize his intentions were benevolent and that he held the secret to leading a good life.

This story's inception was NOT the Bible. The roots of this story can be traced back as far as ancient Mesopotamia and the first known civilizations at the axis of the Tigris and Euphrates. It is one of the Six Original Stories of the World, and it's probably the best known. Because it's so effective. We all want to believe there is a savior out there. We all believe in some deep recesses of our brain that we might be that savior. Or at least help him/her along.

This trilogy does that for me. It's not so much the execution of everything--many parts could have been done better. It's not so much the manner in which it was done, though I think it was more than timely and more than appropriate. For me, it's all how it came together.

Certainly they weren't going to top the first film. It was groundbreaking. It may have been the best overall film of the 90's. I resented parts of the second film that strayed from the form of the first. But I realized that the first film only told a very, very small part of the overall story, and that keeping it there would have eventually taken the characters nowhere.

I'm very pleased with all three for those reasons. Disagree if you like.

***********************************SPOILERS DONE MOTHERF*CKERS*********************************

--Here is a dream I had last night:

I'm on a boardwalk-like area somewhere, maybe by the ocean, maybe not. There are a lot of college-aged kids around. I'm attempting to buy something to eat. My ex-girlfriend walks up to me, drunk. I try to be polite but she is being loud and obnoxious. I try to leave and she follows me around into a sporting goods store where I attempt to find a fitted Cleveland Indians cap to no avail. She comes in, still loud and obnoxious, and is so drunk that she falls over. I have to help her up. I leave the store, and she follows me out, yelling after me. She buys a beer as I try to walk away. She is drinking it and starts making out with the beer guy, then continues to follow me. There is a fast-forward (the first ever fade-out/fade-in in Geoff History), and I'm at a play. For whatever reason, I walk through the actors while they are in the middle of performing the play, up a ladder and out onto a very thin, creaky balcony outside. Trying to think of a move, as I can go almost nowhere, she walks out to face me. I wake up as I'm thinking, "She's going to stab me."

Can anyone analyze this for me? I guess my real question is, do I see a psychiatrist or a psychologist? What drugs do I need? And how much of each? If it helps, I ate celery and a cup of Blueberry Yogurt before bed.

--I have seen the Paris Hilton sex tape. I'm less impressed than I was and find her less attractive every day. That said, she does have better boobies than I would have given her credit for. I can say that. But it's all the nicer I can get.

--I'm beginning to get my insulting swagger back. I like insults. They're like the S'Mores of the Communication World, but less sugary and more hurty.