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The Matrix Revolutions

The Matrix Revolutions on DVD

The Matrix Revolutions is what happens when you have the idea for the first two movies, but want to make it into a trilogy anyway.

Everything gets wrapped up for the most part, but it seems only wrapped up because they had to get it wrapped up.

After using his power to stop the Sentinels, Neo (Keanu Reeves) is now in a coma, stuck in a place called the Train Station, which lies in between the real world and the Matrix. Since his power is only supposed to work in the Matrix (though it now does in the real world as well, apparently), his only way of escape lies with his friends. Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) and Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) have to make a deal with The Frenchman (Lambert Wilson) for Neo’s release.

But they have to move quickly, because Zion is about to be invaded by thousands upon thousands of Sentinels, and the city needs every available man, woman and ship ready to fight. So it comes as no surprise when Neo, after coming back to reality, announces he needs a ship to go to the Machine City. Only Neo knows what Neo is up to, so he and Trinity head off while the rest stay and defend the city. Meanwhile, Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) is taking complete control of the Matrix at the same time as he is trying to kill Neo in the real world.

The first hour of the movie is endless talking. And it’s not the kind of story-based talking we got in the second movie. This talking seems to be heading nowhere and just filling up the first hour so they can get to the action.

The first major action sequence involves the attack on Zion, and is about 25 minutes of some really cool stuff. Once that ends, though, there’s no reason to continue. There’s some more talking, followed by the really lame final battle between Neo and Smith.

After my initial viewing in the theater, I actually kind of liked Revolutions. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized the flaws. Now, after a second viewing on DVD, I can safely say that this third installment of the trilogy just plain sucks. Which is even more disappointing because the second movie was so great, although we may have to take another look at it now.

Even Keanu Reeves, who actually did a good job in the first two movies, seems to have forgotten how to act. Everyone else has toned up the intensity to the point of disbelief; now it looks like they’re all acting (with the exception of Weaving, who is once again fun to watch).

The Matrix Revolutions is one of those movies that we could nitpick at for hours and delve deeply into all its drawbacks. But who has that kind of time? Although many have hailed the third as the best, it’s hard to imagine anyone liking this travesty over the greatness of the second. Revolutions is the kind of movie that make us think that maybe – just maybe – the Wachowski Brothers aren’t as smart as they made us think they are.

Although it made $140 million, The Matrix Revolutions should still be considered a bomb, and deservedly so. The combined $300 million price for the latter two films means number three probably cost at least $130 million. It came and went in theaters faster than you can say “whoa.”

The DVD features a reference quality audio and video track, and extras that exactly meet the standards set by the release of Reloaded.

Presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen (a Pan&Scan version is sold separately), the picture is outstanding. Color and sharpness are excellent, with blacks that don’t hide detail, and not a single trace of foreign objects. It’s a very dark movie, but you never have trouble figuring out what’s going on (not as a result of the picture quality, anyway. Script-wise is another matter...).

Audio, presented in Dolby Digital 5.1, is equally impressive, with plenty of surround use, excellent separation of sound effects, and a deep rumbling bass that shakes the floor.

“Revolutions Recalibrated” is a half hour long featurette on the making of the film. It features interviews with the principal players, but it also features a bunch of spoilers, so save it for after you’ve seen the film (although you could save yourself having to watch the film by just watching this featurette!). During the featurette, a white rabbit will appear in the corner of the screen. When this happens, press Enter on your remote and you’ll be whisked away to another featurette on “bullet time” cinematic techniques.

“CG Revolution” is a 15-minute featurette on, obviously, the visual effects. It talks about computer effects, miniatures, full size set elements, and motion capture. Could have been a lot better were it a full-length documentary that spent a reasonable amount of time on each section. “Super Burly Brawl” is six minutes of storyboards, raw footage, and final composite in three separate windows.

There’s also a featurette on The Matrix Online, a text-based Matrix timeline, a photo gallery, and trailers.

The DVD is very nicely done; it’s too bad the movie sucked.

The Matrix Revolutions, from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
129 minutes, anamorphic widescreen (2.35:1) 16x9 enhanced, Dolby Digital 5.1
Starring Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving
Produced by Joel Silver
Written and directed by The Wachowski Brothers


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