REVIEW: The Matrix Resurrections [2021]

Desire and fear, baby. Neo (Keanu Reeves) and Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) are dead. There’s no denying this fact. They sacrificed themselves for the salvation of humanity, traveling to a machine city to explain to the source code that Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) had gone far enough rogue to threaten the viability of the entire experiment and thus both of their species. Trinity passed first (but not before seeing the real sun for the first time in generations). Neo went next, his deal for peace with the machines being contingent on…

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REVIEW: The Matrix Revolutions [2003]

Cookies need love like everyone does. You cannot have a film as anticlimactic and boring as The Matrix Reloaded segue into a sister project (they were produced and photographed concurrently) as propulsive (albeit very messy) as The Matrix Revolutions without realizing a mistake was made. Whether it was the filmmakers (Lana and Lilly Wachowski), the studio (Warner Bros.), or both, the decision to continue The Matrix through sequels seems to have been motivated by probable box office success rather than actual artistic merit. The idea of two new pieces set…

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REVIEW: The Matrix Reloaded [2003]

We can never see past the choices we don’t understand. Hype and nostalgia are drugs. Not only was I super psyched for The Matrix Reloaded when it came out, I remember being equally psyched upon leaving the theater. I was twenty-one, had just seen The Matrix a year or two previously (was late on that bandwagon), and had watched The Animatrix a couple times to prepare. A bunch of us got together to hit opening weekend (two of whom spoke French and confirmed that the cursing done by Lambert Wilson‘s…

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REVIEW: Benedetta [2021]

We’re all entitled to a sin. Even as a child, Benedetta Carlini (Elena Plonka) believed herself protected by Jesus. As director Paul Verhoeven and co-writer David Birke portray it, her arrival to the convent in Pescia was one dripping in entitlement. She belonged there. It was her destiny. And we believe it because her conviction is immovable thanks to a steady stream of miracles occurring whenever anyone doubts her bond with God. Where did that confidence come from? Was this desire to be Jesus’ bride her own? Was it something…

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