The news has been circulating lately, and I’ve been mulling over it. A Matrix reboot or remake. Huh.
It seems definitely like – while remake might be what we would expect with everything Hollywood has been doing these days – reboot is the more likely route they will go. So not restarting the franchise, but simply dipping back into it. Here’s several articles on the news:
I am unapologetic in the fact that I really like the Matrix trilogy. I think in part I felt a strong connection between the films and the Dune book series, and it felt like the Wachowskis trying to work their way through the themes of the books – much like I was doing myself at the time. I think it was with these films that I coined my often-used phrase, “Just Like Dune.”
But that means the films felt like, for lack of a better term, fandom to me. Fellow travelers in a Dune fandom. But somewhere along the line, I also picked up some Matrix aesthetic (I still love my long black coat), and in writing this post I now have “Mona Lisa Overdrive” stuck in my head – I absolutely loved the music.
The Matrix Reloaded is still one of my go-to pop-in-and-watch movies, though I typically start it roughly when they head back into the Matrix to find the Oracle, and often stop it before reaching the Architect. This skips some of the stronger like-Dune aspects but is just action and effects fun.
All of which is to say… returning to this world? Possibly without the Wachowskis? Disconnected from the plot and characters we know? How do you build a new movie in the Matrix universe? There are only a couple of really big reveals, and it seems like those are already covered. So let’s consider a few things.
I feel like reviewing the movie is pretty quick and easy for me. I did not find it as bad as some did. I definitely feel like the ideas – both story/world ideas and visual ideas – were much better than the character interaction and dialog. And maybe their biggest problem is how easy it is to compare to Guardians of the Galaxy – a movie which they could have come out before, but instead came out after. So Channing Tatum comes across as a poor-man’s Star Lord, rocket-skates and all.
So I want to look more at two aspects of the film. One is the comparison to other science fiction, where I have found people comparing it to all sorts of other movies – but for me, there’s really only one main comparison. The other aspect I want to look at is the thing that I think could have made the film better – more characters! Maybe some spoilers to follow for Jupiter Ascending.
When I watch the Matrix movies, I think about Dune. I feel it must have been a strong influence – you can really see it in Reloaded and Revolutions – and I am okay with that. I like Dune, and I like the Dune trilogy.
That is all to say that I am fascinated by the character of Trinity – who is Neo’s prophesied beloved, much like Chani is Paul’s prophesied beloved. I am fascinated by prophecy, and it will likely be an upcoming focus in some of my posts on time travel and on science fiction and religion.
But for now, what about just Trinity? Does she stand on her own as her own character, or is her whole purpose to be an object for the One to love? That’s what I want to consider about Trinity!
As it is Doctor Who Week (well, at least the 50th Anniversary week), I am going to keep going with my Doctor Who theme! The other day I wrote a post about personified evil, in the Doctor Who episode The Satan Pit. I wanted to once again use the thought of Science Fiction and Religion to consider another Doctor Who episode: The Doctor’s Wife.
This award-winning episode written by Neil Gaiman really is one of the finest episodes of Doctor Who there probably has been or will be. The reason I feel like I can say that is because it explores and discusses the very heart of what the show is, of what happens in it, of that most important and constant of the Doctor’s companions: the TARDIS. Or should I say, the Doctor is the most important and constant of the TARDIS’s companions?
And if you are going to personify an abstract concept, there’s probably not a better writer than Neil Gaiman for the job. Check out Neverwhere (which a guest blogger discussed here on Comparative Geeks before) or American Gods to see what I mean. So as Neil Gaiman is someone who has breathed life into gods, I think I am not out of line in approaching this episode from the stance of Science Fiction and Religion. So read on, for a discussion of this episode, and larger considerations! Spoilers of course!