1) The Matrix Revolutions Isn’t as bad as Everyone Thinks
I think this tends to be the main issue for a lot of people, and on the whole, I think it’s a little unjust. Sure, there were certainly some issues with the story in Revolutions; failing to adequately wrap up the loose ends from the previous film. It also seemed to negate certain plot lines that had already been established. On the whole, however, I think many people were off-put by the religious aspects of the third film.
In fact, I remember quite clearly in the theater I watched it in, as the credits rolled, a man shouted “Ah, they went all religious on us!” Well, we have to face facts that the series from the start had been very religious. The connotations and allusions were ever-present in the first film, and it’s subtle symbolism is one of my favorite aspects of the series. But in the third film, all of that stuff became…not so subtle, and that’s when people started not liking it.
If you look at the third film more objectively, it’s really not hard to like it. It has amazing action scenes, a war scene that could rival any other, and ultimately a good message. There are a lot of things to like in this film, but it was a departure from the previous movies so it’s understandable for many of the die-hards to find fault with it. Of course those guys got on the Internet and suddenly, it was okay to hate this movie. I know there were some issues with it, but take another look, and you’ll find that the film is more fun than you last remembered, especially without all the hyped expectations behind it.
2) Ridiculously Cool Fight Scenes
Say what you will about the films, but it’s hard to deny the impact they had on the martial arts/action genre. The first film reset the bar for action movies and started a movement in Hollywood for fantastic choreographers and pushing the edge of what we’ve seen. Because of The Matrix, we didn’t have to suffer through anymore action films with sub-par fighting here in the States, while China and Japan laughed at our efforts.
Since the last film, in 2003, we’ve seen how drastically fight scenes have improved in the film industry. The Wachowskis are all about pushing the envelope and moving genres forward. They changed the way films were shot and choreographed with the first films, and it’s highly unlikely they’d rest on their laurels for any new movies. With films like The Raid 2, Ong Bak, Ip Man and several others taking fighting flicks to the next level, I would expect the next Matrix to do everything possible to raise the bar once more. At the very least, it’ll be fun to see them try!
3) There Are Still Plenty of Stories to be Told
One of the fun aspects of The Matrix, is the vast ‘universe’ it created. As shown by the popular AniMatrix, there are several stories that can be told within its established world, without stepping on other plots or the need for the primary characters. I know many fans’ complaint now is the fact that the original story is over and Neo is dead. The end of Revolutions essentially set up Neo’s return, but even he’s not needed to continue the franchise Despite the fact that there was a truce between the machines and the humans, you know not everyone is going to be happy about it and more than likely the transition wouldn’t be smooth. This leaves room for smaller stories to be told while still technically being a sequel.
The Merovingian is one such character who wouldn’t enjoy the peace. His business thrives on the dispute, and conflict between man and machine. Since he’s already an established villain and wasn’t completely dealt with, he’s prime for comeback and one of the few programs who could cause havoc independent of the machines and humans. He’s known for having a bad ass entourage of fighters, so there would be plenty of action and story, without having to erase the work that’s been done before.
That’s just one example. The films have also alluded to the fact that Neo wasn’t the first ‘chosen one’, making the series ripe for a prequel story to cover the story of those first failed attempts at overthrowing the machines. Or they could follow another rogue program out to cause mischief for all the others attempting to escape. There’s a myriad of stories they could tell that would both appease franchise fans, while carving new paths.
4) It’s the Wachowskis
Seriously, if there’s a family duo out there that knows how to make films, it’s them. They brought us the Matrix, and after that they helped to give us V for Vendetta (though not in the director’s chair), which we’ve already argued is one of the most influential movies of modern times. While they’ve struggled for another box office smash since then, it’s hard to deny their visual flair and talents for storytelling. Cloud Atlas was beautifully told, and I feel the problem with that movie lies mostly in its source. It’s a movie I continue to enjoy and is a good showcase for how well these directors can tell a story with characters you care about.
Let’s not forget that they created the world of The Matrix. They know it better than anyone, and are the only people I feel could handle a return to this franchise and have it make the most sense. The siblings still have a lot of talent up their sleeves, with the potential to make highly entertaining movies. Hopefully Jupiter Ascending will remind everyone of that and start to silence some of the doubters. I guess we’ll have to wait and see!
Remember, for now, all of this is wild speculation. It’s very possible that nothing comes of it and more Matrix movies never happen (until 15 years later when Hollywood decides to remake it). But if there is a chance for these movies to happen, just remember that it is okay to be excited for them. A few bad experiences shouldn’t keep you from enjoying a return to a genre-defining, innovative, and overall enjoyable franchise.