A fourth Matrix movie is exactly the kind of rabbit hole reality needs right now

With its ‘red pill’ imagery co-opted by incels, how nice that Lana Wachowski, a trans woman, could give the original a sequel it deserves

Of the 10 highest-grossing films of 2019, only one – Jordan Peele’s Us – isn’t part of a franchise. Few jaws will have hit the floor, then, at the wholly un-flabbergasting news that sci-fi punch-’em-up The Matrix is to return next year with a fourth instalment. The original trilogy’s co-creator Lana Wachowski will co-write and direct, and both Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss are set to re-stretch their leather trousers, despite the inconvenient matter of both of their characters being dead. All of this, in case you were wondering, is very good news.

Pub bores will already be licking the tips of their quills and drafting some dreadful soporific diatribe about how endless sequels and reboots are yet more proof that society is going down the Armitage Shanks. But Avengers: Endgame isn’t the most successful film ever solely because it’s a sequel. It’s the most successful film ever because it’s brilliant.

Be honest – what do you really remember about The Matrix: Reloaded or Revolutions? But the first film? Classic. An endlessly quotable pop-culture milestone. The sequels? Well, there was a car chase that was quite good. Neo and Trinity did that interminable bonk during that rave. Then there were some explosions, before most of the main characters died in variously underwhelming fashion. In short, the sequels were a load of old pants. This is Wachowski’s chance to give the original Matrix the rip-roaring follow-up it’s always deserved.

The timing also feels right. “Many of the ideas Lilly [Wachowski, Lana’s sister and co-director] and I explored 20 years ago about our reality are even more relevant now,” Wachowski said. From the vast strides made in tech and surveillance to blancmange-brained world leaders now denying reality itself, she’s not wrong. The words “red pill” have even been co-opted by incels and meninists as a metaphor for their self-imposed outsider status and thus why no one wants to have sex with them. Wouldn’t it be nice, with these buffoons seemingly everywhere, if one of the highest-grossing films of 2020 was directed by a trans woman? I, for one, am in. Take my money, Wachowski. Let’s see how deep the rabbit hole goes.

Contributor

Luke Holland

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
The Matrix rebooted: do we want to go down the rabbit hole again?
The influential cyberpunk trilogy conjured a terrifying future where humans were enslaved to technology. How might a new film’s creative revamp top that?

Ben Child

08, Aug, 2019 @11:47 AM

Article image
From red pills to red, white and blue Brexit: how The Matrix shaped our reality
Twenty years after the release of The Matrix, its prescient vision of a virtual world continues to mirror events in real life

Danny Leigh

21, Jan, 2019 @7:00 AM

Article image
Matrix rebooted: update of dystopian sci-fi franchise in the works
Sources suggest studio is considering Michael B Jordan for lead role in new version of hit franchise, with Alphas creator Zak Penn in talks to write treatment

Gwilym Mumford

15, Mar, 2017 @10:08 AM

Article image
The Matrix trilogy review – pop-culture juggernaut still lands a thrilling punch
Keanu Reeves’ first trip down the rabbit hole is as electrifying as ever – and Carrie Anne-Moss’s charisma elevates the sequels

Peter Bradshaw

12, Jul, 2019 @8:00 AM

Article image
Take the red pill and hire Laurence: can the Matrix work without Fishburne’s Morpheus?
Matrix 4 is under way, with director Lana Wachowski spinning a fresh puzzle for fans to obsess over. But their biggest question for now is: why isn’t Laurence Fishburne on the cast list?

Ben Child

25, Jun, 2021 @9:24 AM

Article image
The Matrix Resurrections trailer: Neo disappears back down the rabbit hole
Is that Morpheus? What are those blue pills for? And will this be the same old story told for a fourth different time?

Ben Child

09, Sep, 2021 @3:39 PM

Article image
The Matrix director: I'm glad film recognised as trans metaphor
Lilly Wachowski expresses pleasure that the film’s ‘original intention’ has become commonplace understanding among fans

Catherine Shoard

06, Aug, 2020 @11:54 AM

Article image
The Matrix: No 13 best sci-fi and fantasy film of all time

The Wachowskis, 1999

Stuart Heritage

21, Oct, 2010 @10:42 AM

Article image
Sad Keanu 2: why The Matrix without Reeves would be a journey down the wrong rabbit hole
The classic cyberpunk flick is getting a reboot without the everydude who seemed to embody its entire worldview. Can somebody wake us up from this nightmare?

Ben Child

15, Mar, 2017 @5:24 PM

Article image
Why is Elon Musk telling us to 'take the red pill'?
A cryptic tweet from the Tesla billionaire that referenced the first Matrix movie has garnered approval from Ivanka Trump – but not everyone is happy

18, May, 2020 @2:39 PM