Thanks to Bo and Oren (
… and together we are Three Fat Producers!) I saw Matrix: Reloaded tonight. So now I can read all the posts those nasty first-weekenders wrote about it.
Capsule review (no real spoilers): some awesome action, interwoven with set-pieces of exposition/philosophical bullshit, mediated through a sequence of Mysterious Strangers ™ – in other words, NPCs. This is definitely a movie about the roleplaying experience (notice how everyone looks cool when they jack into the Matrix, because those are their wish-fullfillement PCs). My games are just like this…
Over here, Itay Greif has an excellent, spoiler-laden play-by-play detail of why the Matrix: Reloaded is an RPG run by a 15-year old virgin DM (Hebrew).
I should note that the bullshit is skillfully done – more skillful than I expected, at any rate. The Merovingian (annoying NPC with French-accent) is cringe-worthy, but the scene with the ultimate
explain! NPC actually works very well, IMHO.
I can understand why some people felt the movie wasn’t
as good as the first – the first movie drew an iconic appeal from it’s mysterious, unelaborated background, while here, some effort is put into world-building (Zion, especially, but also expanding the mythological aspect of the Matrix), which dilutes the “purity” of the thing. Very similar to what Andrew Rilstone was saying about the first Star Wars vs. its sequels.
Speaking of Star Wars, Bo said the Matrix Trilogy could be
a Star Wars trilogy for our times (I don’t know what “our” times are – I grew up on Star Wars – but I guess “these” times is pretty accurate). He then tossed off the idea that in the future we’ll have to suffer through prequels.
I can just picture that, I said. The Matrix being programmed, the Matrix being compiled, and of course, the Matrix being debugged…
Let’s go in and beat up some stuff, I’ve got these bugs to work out…!