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BMZ Review: The Matrix Revolutions: The IMAX Experience
By Paula Tagle


The Matrix Revolutions: The IMAX Experience
Written by: Paula Tagle
Source: Big Movie Zone
Date: November 2003


Category: Reviews

Less exciting and less profound, The Matrix Revolutions offers neither the energy nor intelligence of the two films that preceded it.  More than any other impression, the film expresses a boredom with it all (from the filmmakers to the actors to the audience) as if the film wanted to say: Just end already.

Though commendable in its scope and ambition, the final installment of The Matrix trilogy falters in creativity where the previous two films excelled.  Part of the success of The Matrix franchise, although relying heavily on its coolness factor and explosive actions sequences, also derives from its ability to reconfigure myths, religious beliefs and existential ideas into a post post-modern sensibility.  It gave substance to its style. 

Here, however, the esoteric questions raised in The Matrix and Reloaded have none of the weight nor inventiveness previously delivered.  Instead, the dialogue appears heavy-handed in its abstraction and just plain lame.  Even when The Oracle declares, "I believe,"  you really don't.  The corny statements only lightly sprinkled in the first two films overrun Revolutions.  "The machines don't care how old I am.  They'll kill me just the same," says one kid in Zion.  Challenging huh.

The one exception to this overwrought melodrama is Hugo Weaving's charismatic Agent Smith.  So over-the-top is he, it works.  It is his perspective of the meaninglessness of it all that provides the much needed smarmy disgust to combat an otherwise bland script.

Nevertheless, if you don't think too much, the film is entertaining.  I mean really, why do we bother seeing it?  To watch the crazy superhuman action of course.  In response, Revolutions offers a 14-minute kill 'em all battle between humans and machines along with the triumphant Super Brawl between Neo and Smith.  The DMR conversion of The Matrix Revolutions for the giant screen accentuates just this type of filmmaking.  Sure the battle is a confusing mess of metal and lights, but it is absorbing -- demanding all the attention you can muster.  The IMAX conversion heightens the tension of these scenes enveloping one in both the clarity of images and expanse of sound.  Guns fire, machines crash -- it is an overwhelming but surprisingly welcome bombardment to the senses.  Dramatic, to say the least.  Such exceptional visuals allows you to forgive the more quiet moments not exactly suited for a giant screen.  Really, I can only take so much of a gigantor Larry Fishburne face.

Still, it is this reliance on the visuals that truly dampers Revolutions, offering no expansion or leap from the first two films.  Perhaps without the expectations and groundwork set prior to Revolutions, it might have been a satisfying film on its own.  But instead, its potential feels squandered, its heady ideas flattened -- a film that could've been but ultimately disappoints.

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