The Matrix Resurrections

Tom Cruise in Top Gun Maverick. Scene from the Paramount Pictures official trailer.
Tom Cruise in Top Gun Maverick. Scene from the Paramount Pictures official trailer.

The 1999 opening of the Matrix series was riveting, exciting, and compelling. The “red and blue” pill choice offering freedom or continued blind servitude became part of pop culture vocabulary, akin to the Seinfeld inspired “Yada Yada Yada” or “Festivus for the RestOfUs.” Keanu Reeves as a computer hacker codenamed Neo, through the mysterious mentor Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne), discovers that humans psychically inhabit a digitally created computer program. At the same time, their insensate bodies feed artificial intelligence (AI) overseers. He (aka Mr. Anderson) is destined to lead an underground of noble humans fighting back secretly in fear by overcoming powerful computer-generated quasi-federal agent tools and their AI masters.

Perhaps it was a false expectation that historical familiarity and admiration of the 1999 premiere could propel a parallel creation of a sequel replete with mystery, intrigue, romance, and new award-winning attributes. Although the film score was noticeably interesting, new special effects and inconsequential dialogue were inadequate to draw an astute participant into the dreamscape. Individuals continually exited the theater as the film trudged forward.

Minutes into this fourth edition of the Matrix franchise reminded me of the B. B. King’s 60s chestnut The Thrill is Gone. What came was confusion and an indolent bearded Neo, or wait, Mr. Anderson manifestation, or maybe not, inspiring another 60s Led Zeppelin song, Dazed and Confused. 

Keanu Reeves has a large fan base and is known for his broad talents, philanthropy, and generosity. While he draws audiences to his work, inadequate excitement ensued when former paramour Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) is discovered in a vegetative state in a slime-filled casket providing energy to AI masters as her consciousness lives with an ersatz family. Trinity’s plight drives a series of events to free and reunite her with Neo. Just as Neo did, I wondered why he could no longer fly. Fortunately, Trinity can zip around like a butterfly. Laurence Fishburne did not reprise his Morpheus role, so we got a friendly AI substitute machine version and statue.

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Edward A. Kliszus

Edward A. Kliszus

Performer, conductor, and educator Edward Kliszus began his musical studies at the age of 5 and has since been deeply involved in the fine, performing, and literary arts. He is a long-time and current member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) and the American Federation of Musicians (AFM). He studied trumpet performance and music education while attending the Manhattan School of Music and was a student of Mel Broiles, principal trumpet of the New York Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. His post-graduate studies at New York University focused on trumpet and piano performance, music composition, and analysis of composer Elliott Carter's 1974 work Brass Quintet. He was music director and conductor of the New Jersey based Union Symphony Orchestra for 15 years and has performed at Manhattan's West Village venue Monologues and Madness. He currently focuses his artistic and creative endeavors on writing, music composition, piano jazz, and as a critic for and OpeningNight.Online. He holds a Ph.D. from New York University, Master of Music from the Manhattan School of Music, and Bachelor of Music from Nyack College.

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The Matrix Resurrections

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