The Matrix Resurrections, 2021.
Directed by Lana Wachowski.
Starring Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Jessica Henwick, Jonathan Groff, Neil Patrick Harris, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, and Jada Pinkett Smith.
The Matrix Resurrections is fresh off its disappointing theatrical run with a 4K UltraHD release that pretty much recreates the movie-going experience. The film looks beautiful and sounds great, although the story was a bit too heavy on the nostalgia for my tastes (your mileage may vary.) Warner Bros. has issued this edition with a Blu-ray copy, a code for a digital copy, and a nice batch of bonus features.
A funny aspect of getting older is that past events can feel like they happened yesterday one moment, or many years ago the next. That’s how I view a movie like The Matrix, which was such a huge deal to my 29-year-old self. Now that I’m 52, I’ve found that the film has aged well, although the two sequels are still as tepid as I thought they were in 2003.
If the intent of the new movie, The Matrix Resurrections, was to push my nostalgia buttons, it succeeded, although I found the story to be good but not great. I don’t know if there was a way to continue The Matrix without simply rehashing elements of the original film – I tend to feel that maybe the first film should have stood alone, without a franchise being built around it.
That’s not to say Resurrections is a bad film. It has its moments, particularly in the interplay between Neo and Trinity as the former tries to awaken the latter to the reality of what’s been happening during the 60 years since the events of the last movie. I certainly found it worthy of a second viewing when this new 4K edition arrived from Warner Bros., but I also felt like it was more of an exercise in nostalgia than anything new and groundbreaking, like the original was.
Of course, the film looks beautiful on 4K Ultra HD. Given its recent vintage, Resurrections is a movie that could go straight from the editing room to theaters to 4K without needing any laborious restoration work. If you missed this film at the cinema, you can pop in this new 4K and rest assured that you’re seeing an image that’s pretty much a replication of what you would have seen on the big screen. What a time to be alive, right?
The Blu-ray disc that’s included here is no slouch either, and if you want to partake in Resurrections on a computer or portable device, a code for a digital copy has been included too. The bonus features are all relegated to the Blu-ray platter, giving the 4K version of the film plenty of room for high-end image quality. Here are the extras you’ll find:
- No One Can Be Told What the Matrix Is (9 minutes): The cast takes the time to look back on the original trilogy, with copious clips from those films.
- Resurrecting the Matrix (31 minutes): Director Lana Wachowski, along with main stars Carrie-Anne Moss and Keanu Reeves and others, talk about the return to the franchise after so many years away. Wachowski gets a lot of screen time here as she talks about her gender transition and how it affected her creative outlook.
- Neo x Trinity: Return to the Matrix (8 minutes): Reeves and Moss reflect on their original meeting for the first film, all those many years ago, and talk about reuniting for this one.
- Allies + Adversaries: The Matrix Remixed (8.5 minutes): Members of the supporting cast talk about their characters as well as their experiences filming the movie.
- Matrix 4 Life (6 minutes): This is another walk down nostalgia lane, including behind-the-scenes footage from the making of all four movies. The main emphasis here is on the cast and crew members who worked on the original trilogy and returned for this film.
- I Still Know Kung Fu (5 minutes): The fight scenes get an all-to-brief look. Reeves gets a chance to show off his great sense of humor, which is always welcome.
- The Matrix Reactions (48.5 minutes): This is a breakdown of nine scenes from the movie, with the cast and crew chiming in with their thoughts on each one. You’ll also find comparisons between the original footage and the final product.
Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★ ★