April 12, 2000
Well, I finally caught "The Matrix" last night on cable (actually, it’s now satellite), and, as I suspected from the beginning, it was a big nothing. Not only is it a stupid science fiction story, with (and I quote Leonard Maltin) "a high Mumbo-Jumbo Quotient," but it goes on and on and on, seemingly forever. Acts one and two were at least bearable, but act three was complete pandering noisy shit of the worst Joel Silver "Die Hard" variety.
Perhaps it’s just me, but any vision of the future that still contains gunpowder-driven, bullet-firing weapons is moronic (like, say, "Starship Troopers"). Bruce Campbell, being overly nice, said that he felt the filmmakers wanted to make a good movie, but that it simply wasn’t humanly possible working for Joel Silver. I personally never got a sense of a good movie lurking anywhere in this picture.
Just so we can get this out in the open, Keanu Reeves is a big bore! And why, may I ask, when our heroes travel into the Matrix do they automatically end up in sexy, fashionable black attire? It’s also particularly bad storytelling technique to have to have a character that sits at a mega-computer and has to talk the rest of the characters through their adventures on a cell phone.
By the time the Wachowski Bros. reach the end of this nonsense they’re not even following their own stupid rules anymore. Whether or not Neo is "the chosen one," nothing has indicated in any way that he’s immortal and won’t die, yet he gets shot five or six times and it means nothing. By this time, though, it has become so noisy and meaningless with all the automatic weapon fire that plot considerations no longer mean very much.
In fact, the most interesting aspects of this film for me by a long shot were that Anthony Ray Parker, who portrayed the character Dozer, also played the Minotaur in the Hercules TV movie I directed, and Julian (Sonny) Arahanga, who played the character Apoc, was on the 2nd unit lighting crew when I was 2nd unit director on the Hercules movies. And far more interesting than anything in the film, Anthony Ray Parker, who lives in New Zealand, and I are both from Michigan.