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The Matrix Revolutions
DVD disk
10.06.2004 By: The Shootin Surgeon
The Matrix Revolutions order
The Wachowski Brothers

Keanu Reeves
Laurence Fishburne
Carrie-Anne Moss


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The third and final installment of The Matrix Trilogy sees Neo, Trinity and Morpheus continuing their battle to free humanity from the grasp of the Machines. This time, as the machines near Zion and mankind nears its end, Neo and Trinity, finally admitting their love for each other, inch toward the Machine City in the hopes of accomplishing "The One's" prophecy.
Wrapped up in a shell of overdrawn and overreaching philosophy is the core of what's made THE MATRIX and its sequels popular to the mainstream fan: kick-ass fight scenes. Certainly there are those who'll read into "the message" that's trying to come across. I don't understand it myself but I could tell that somehow, somewhere, someone was trying to tell me something. The way I figure it, either that something is way above my own philosophical plane or my own brain was telling me that frankly, I didn't care and I just wanted to see Neo (Reeves) and Agent Smith (Weaving) duking it out while smashing every piece of wood, bending every rod of metal and cracking every piece of concrete around them. There were a few other things I was looking forward to, namely Carrie-Anne Moss' very tight and ultra-sexy vinyl suit and Monica Bellucci's mind-numbing rack. I got the vinyl suit and I got, albeit only for a short while -- the rack -- but unfortunately, that wasn't enough. The flick lost me somewhere around Jada Pinkett-Smith, corny dialogue and the "weird" Wachowski brother (I think it's Larry). It's unfortunate that as fresh as the original MATRIX was, this time around, I didn't give a rat's ass who or what The Merovingian was, The Oracle started to seriously grate my nerves and The Frenchman made me wish for The German to show up and scare him away...

Fortunately, Captain CGI came to the rescue and delivered two of the most awesome battle sequences my huge, hairy ass has ever seen. We're treated to an awesome sight when the Machines start to drill a bit too close to the human haven of Zion. As the humans suit up in their massive, mech-like APU suits and the Machine drills start getting louder, the whole tempo shifts from philosophical to frightening and once the bullets start roaring towards the flock of flesh-hungry robots, your sound-system will change gears and rattle your ceiling. The ultimate battle between Neo and his three-flick rival Agent Smith was also exciting and blew some minty-fresh air into what was up until then, an iffy effort. If you want to see stuff get smashed, then you'll get a Hulk-worthy dose of it here as Smith and Neo trade blows and use each others heads as baseball's. These two kick ass scenes -- which you can catch in between naps -- almost completely make up for what would have been a laughable sci-fi effort, if it didn't have a Matrix tag attached to it. Pinkett-Smith also stinks the screen up as per her usual self, but spares us mention of her über-annoying husband, while Laurence Fishburne shows up with a beer-gut that would make Cowboy Curtis hang his head in shame and the remaining characters display a level of personality that would even bore The Machines to their doom. Not really great, but if you can just forward to the fighting, you'll get what most came for.
There's enough to keep everyone happy here although don't expect any appearances from the Wachowski Brothers, they're nowhere to be found since part of their contract for the two sequels was that they wouldn't have to do any "promo work" for the films so the latter could "speak for themselves"... truly now we understand how they could end up with such a pretentious script. After you're done with disc one, which contains trailers for all the Matrix films, you can go to disc two which has the following grub:

Revolutions Recalibrated (40 mins.): This "making of" feature goes through all the motions with commentary from the entire cast and some crew including visual effect guru John Gaeta and producer Joel Silver's drunken nose. On a serious note, it's actually quite a complete documentary, despite not breaking much new ground. Most of the concepts have either been analyzed to death on previous parts of the trilogy or been swiped by other flicks and used on their own DVDs. However, the most entertaining part of the feature is listening to Fishburne give his thoughts on the Matrix Philosophy. Dude... it's just a movie... Get a life!

CG Revolution (25 mins.): There's a strong focus on two specific components of Revolutions: the siege of Zion scene and the monster APU units, both of which were new to this episode. Fairly entertaining, but soon overstays its welcome.

Super Burly Brawl (18 mins.): This is a mildly interactive feature in which you can access three different video angles for the final battle between Neo and Smith. Either storyboards, set footage or a mostly final cut can be seen and flipped through with the "angle" button on your remote. This scene is always fun to watch since it contains the Greatest Punch Ever in a movie... Poor Smithie...

Future Gamer: The Matrix Online (11 mins.): A quick feature on the Ubisoft/Monolith game that takes over where Revolutions left off. I don't know much about it, but they sure made it look cool! Then again, Enter The Matrix sucked on my Xbox so this one has an uphill battle as far as I'm concerned.

Before the Revolution (text): An interactive timeline that will give you the background on all the Matrix action up to Revolutions. It'll definitely help if you're not enough of a geek to know this stuff off the top of your head, but it unfortunately doesn't explain the confusing ending this time around.

3-D Evolution (text): This well produced stills gallery allows you to switch from pic to pic while accessing concept art, storyboards and final scene stills for each. A bit slow to go through, but nicely though out nonetheless.

Operator: Neo-Realism (12 mins.): You like bullet-time? Well if you haven't heard enough about it over the last 5 years, you'll get a bit more here, as well as a look at some of the new applications of virtual cinematography.

Operator: Super Big Mini Models (8 mins.): Much like the "big-atures" discussed on the LOTR extended editions, these huge scale miniatures are used to simulate explosions, crashes and more. A nice little feature on some old-school SFX.

Operator: Double-Agent Smith (7 mins.): Nice little feature on the techniques used to make the million or so Smiths who witness the confrontation between Neo and the main Smith.

Operator: Mind over Matter (8 mins.): For anyone who thought Keanu Reeves was a sissy, you'll get to watch him, as well as Fishburne and hottie Carrie-Anne Moss doing their own stunts. I usually like this kind of stuff, but I think over the past half-decade, we've all seen enough of Reeves hanging on wires. I could watch Moss getting all tied up all day though, but you know what....enough about me!
Despite a pair of awesome action sequences, this film never really gets to where it should have gone. The Wachowskis wanted the Matrix sequels to speak for themselves? Well, what they say is a little story about two brothers who came up with a cool idea, milked it for all it had and then kept squeezing that teat until what came out just wasn't that good anymore. A rental at best, but make sure you have a nerdy friend along who can tell you what's going on.
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