Monday, January 17, 2022



So much of this project depends on the use of actual clips from the first three films that you're not convinced that director Lana Wachowski didn't have much faith in the ideas that are haphazardly strung together here. To be expected, the action sequences are well-made. The look of the film is dark with desaturated color in all shots to give this enterprise an oddly fetching grubbiness. Still, when they are not fighting, the characters are talking, talking, talking, talking and talking and then talking some more as they hash through plot points and concepts of the three previous films, indulge themselves in some very 90s Baudrilliardisms and stale deconstructive bromides, all of it given with a hurried, breathless pace, none of it really makes any sense in ways that you care about. What you realize is that this whole reshuffling of the Matrix mythology is to set us up for another trilogy of movies, or more even, if this current effort justifies its expense and hype financially. It's not without some laughs, some cool moments, some genuine surprises, but as with most franchise films these days, it's drawn out, it drags too often, you find yourself fast-forwarding to the next action sequence because of all the chatter amid the expressionless looks of sleepy eyed actors cannot keep your attention.


 A well-made piece of action-adventure, and a unique premise, to my mind, but nothing to brag about if you're the screenwriter or the director. There is nothing technically amiss with the motion picture; every scene set up achieves what it's supposed to do, the actors are fine , the pacing and editing keeps matters moving along. The problem is that the matters that are kept moving are hackneyed tropes. You can only repaint an old wreck of a vehicle so many times before the dents , scratches and pockets of rust show themselves through the thickest coat you can put on it.


A fine , dark comedy that presents audiences with characters viewers want desperately to relate to in some way, an urge the filmmakers deny. There are times when you feel inclined to cheer for Rosamund Pike's character as the heartless and irrationally ruthless tries to surmount grim challenges the tautly constructed plot foists on her, only to have your heart strings strummed, more than just a little, but the sad eyed frustrations of Peter Dinklage's portrayal of a deep- souled yet equally heartless Russian mob boss. But filmmakers are quite adept at intervening at those plot points where viewers might invest there sympathies in a single character's plight: at crucial points we get reminded that although there is a veneer of "relatability" to all protagonists and antagonists (Pike's and Dinklage's personas switch positions a time or two here) we get reminders that these folks are monsters, sociopaths, dedicating themselves to doing awful things that ruin the lives of innocent people. The ambivalence adds to the tension and makes the comedic critique of corporate capitalism effectively cutting.

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