Thoughts and Reactions to Watching ‘The Matrix’ For the First Time

There is currently renewed hype and interest for Keanu Reeves. The fact that he had three films come out over the course of a month — John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum, Always Be My Maybe, and as of last Friday, Toy Story 4 — probably helps a lot.

Despite the fact that he has a career spanning the last three and a half decades, this is really the first time for me that I’m actually paying attention to him. Not to say that I wasn’t aware of him before, for I actually am well aware of the fact that he is a mixed race Asian American actor who has been privileged to have a long,  prosperous career in Hollywood. But what is going to sound strange for some is that the very first scene I ever saw him perform in was this one:

That’s right. Always Be My Maybe is the first film I ever saw him in, and I didn’t want that to be the only one. With this renewed hype for the man and the fact that this year is the 20th anniversary since The Matrix came out (which I’ve always been interested in watching), I figured there’s no better time than the present to finally watch this film I’ve heard so much about. In chronological order, these are my thoughts and reactions to different scenes and moments from The Matrix:

  • Trinity jumping from one building to the next: Is she a superhuman?!
  • The phone booth that Trinity is in getting hit by a truck: She’s gone just like that?! Who was she?
  • Neo meets Trinity at a club: How in the name of science is she alive?!
  • Upon Neo’s real name being revealed: Thomas Anderson is his real name? No wonder he goes by Neo.
  • When Morpheus is helping Neo escape the office:  How does he know exactly where he is? Was tracking technology that sophisticated in the late 90’s?
  • When Neo is taken by Agent Smith: Really?! He gave up just like that?!
  • During the intimidation scene when Agent Smith reveals to Neo, “…and you help your landlady take out her garbage”: Okkaayyy. Unnecessary detail that was definitely acquired by way of stalking.
  • WHY is Agent Smith wearing sunglasses INDOORS?
  • Neo’s mouth disappears: That is so freaky!
  • The first scene we see Morpheus, he is also wearing sunglasses indoors.
  • Morpheus to Neo: “The Matrix is everywhere. It is all around us.” –> So… it’s like the Force?
  • When Neo wakes up among a sea of other human pods: What kind of a whacked up science experiment is this?!
  • Morpheus upon rescuing Neo: “Welcome to the real world.”–> What just happened?
  • Tank programming Neo to learn martial arts: If everyone were able to acquire martial arts this way, I think we would all be in trouble.
  • Neo vs. Morpheus: This is hella tight!
  • Cypher’s dinner meeting with Agent Smith: Why is Cypher meeting with him? Is he a double agent?
  • Morpheus to Neo: “I told you I can only show you the door. You have to walk through it.”–> There’s an actual door. It wasn’t just a metaphor. It’s like this whole universe is allergic to metaphors.
  • The TV behind the girls making blocks move in midair is showing bunnies running: I’m not sure why that’s there, but that’s got to be the cutest detail of the movie so far.
  • The whole scene with the Oracle: I like her. She’s like a blend between Yoda and a grandmother.
  • Cypher backstabs and kills other crew members: TRAITOR!
  • Tank zaps Cypher dead: How did Tank not die?
  • Neo and Trinity prepare to save Morpheus: Glad to see Neo embrace not so much who he’s supposed to be, but rather what he can do.
  • Neo walks into the building wearing a long coat and sunglasses (indoors): It’s about to get REAL!
  • Water sprinklers come on following the bomb going off: Brilliant comedic timing for a film that’s anything but a comedy.
  • Neo dodges bullets: YES! There’s the moment I’ve seen parodied and recreated over the last 20 years! The real deal is EPIC!
  • Neo: “Can you fly that [helicoptor]?” Trinity: “Not yet.” –> This is a moment that exists in so many sci-fi films, and yet the character always winds up succeeding at flying said machinery anyway.
  • Morpheus to Neo: “There’s a difference between knowing the path and walking the path.” –> Oh that is DEEP!
  • Neo vs. Agent Smith: This fight scene doesn’t feel as satisfying to watch compared to when Neo sparred Morpheus earlier.
  • Trinity confessing her love for Neo: There was very little indication that she had any interest for him, let alone love him. It feels like that was included for the sake of giving Neo a love interest.
  • Neo is alive: He was shot several times! You mean to say that that kiss revived him?!
  • Neo flying off in the final scene: That’s kind of too perfect!

My general opinion is that The Matrix is definitely one of those films that you need to see more than once to completely understand it. It’s been a few hours since I’ve watched it and I’m still trying to make sense of so much of what went on. However, I think that is part of the point of the film.

Overall, I really liked it. Keanu was great as Neo and it definitely means a lot knowing that someone from the community was the lead in a film as iconic as this. I will definitely see it again. I took the red pill and I have no regrets.

Now, what other films that Keanu has been in should I watch? Hmmm…

5 thoughts on “Thoughts and Reactions to Watching ‘The Matrix’ For the First Time

  1. its not hard to read or understand his a person Neo or Anderson in this film figuring out who he is and how he fits in the matrix. Seeing the oracle the actress could do that scene excellently and too bad she passed away. Him being oriental I wish that would be tapped into but alas they wont dare have Neo be blood related to James Hong! one day though! Yeah I was drawn too the movie when Morpheus said blue or red.

  2. I would suggest Point Break, because it also stars Patrick Swayze ,and there is some crazy stuntwork involved. Its not my favorite Reeves movie, but its in the top five, for sure. or you might try Constantine. The movie bares absolutely no resemblance whatsoever to the comic books but its fun to watch Reeves sling magic around and fight demons.

  3. Oh yeah, I forgot Speed. That’s a lot of fun, though its not a smart movie. its definitely an adrenaline rush, which makes it to a lot of people’s top ten lists for best action films.

  4. Definitely watch Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure and Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, A Scanner Darkly, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and Parenthood.

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