Picked up “Matrix the Ultimate” today. It’s got all the special editions of the three movies, along with some behind the scenes, making of’s, commentaries by philosophers, etc. Ten DVD’s, all new “digital transfers” (look great!), something like 30 hours of content, some of it new and interesting.
Watching it reminded me of the first time I saw the Matrix, along with some favorite lines.
Mouse: Pay no attention to the hypocrites. To deny our own impulses is to deny the very thing that makes us human.
Girl: Do not try to bend the spoon, that’s impossible. Instead try to realize the truth.
It is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself.
Morpheus: The body cannot live without the mind.
Trinity: He is the one.
The first time I saw it was with bunch of people from school. College, ACM, etc. We ended up seeing it opening weekend, almost on accident, having no idea what it was about (this was when “whatisthematrix.com” was all that was advertised). Needless to say the movie was awesome, we all left very psyched about it. Immediately afterwards we rented pi (π?) and watched it. Probably one of the more mind-expanding movie nights I’ve had in a while.
The Matrix is a fascinating movie. It’s a movie about representations, and understanding those representations. “The Matrix”, “The Desert of the Real”, “The One” … each of those play a role in the movie, but they also have analogs (comparisons) in RealLife(tm), which you are encouraged to explore while watching the movie. Some would say that The Matrix was merely mediocre, and as a movie, it might have been. But as a popcorn-munching introduction to deeper philosophical thought, expanding your world-view, not taking things at face value, it can’t be beat.
This brings me to the subtle, yet important differences between The Sixth Sense and Fight Club. (Warning, spoilers ahead!!) Both of them were really good movies, but Fight Club “doesn’t count”. In the Sixth Sense, Mr. Shyamalan committed to the fact that Bruce Willis was a ghost, and that he couldn’t interact with anyone. In Fight Club, it was more wishy-washy. My memory is a little fuzzy, but I remembered several times where both characters (Ed Norton, Brad Pitt) were interacting with people simultaneously.
In Sixth Sense when the secret was revealed I mentally reviewed the movie, and every piece of the puzzle fit together. When “the time came” and the great secret was revealed in Fight Club, it felt a lot more like “Ooh, wow, let’s impress the stupid 12 year-olds” because when I mentally reviewed the movie, there were several parts where the surprise didn’t match the story (most notably when the both of them stealing the fat from the rendering plant for making soap). And that was the problem. In Sixth Sense, the ghost was a ghost. In Fight Club, the action in the story said there were two people, not just one.
Anyway, the commentary on the Matrix discs is pretty good so far, the commentators deep knowledge of all the different symbolism in the movies is very interesting. “Wake Up,” they say.