Interesting point of view. I hadn't thought of current affairs when interpreting what the brothers were saying.
Richard Giles |
May 26, 2003 11:35 AM
Be careful with that leftist agit-prop line. The twentieth century was, in part, the story of leftists killing as many people as possible while fighting "against a rigid power structure". The people freed from the Matrix kill normal people who are controlled by the sinister forces behind the Matrix - agents who occupy normal human beings.
There certainly are some lefty messages in the movie - not least of which are the images of G.H-W. Bush and G.W. Bush on the monitors while Neo confronts the Architect.
Regardless of the Wachowski brothers' political affiliations - and your incorrect assertion that Hollywood Blockbusters necessarily "leads to a reinforcement of a conservative world view" (The American President, Enemy of the State, The Matrix...) - some things work in The Matrix and Matrix Reloaded because they take place within a particular - and imaginary - context.
Hollywood (and other) leftists may hate Republicans and conservatives, and Republicans (and independents like me) will still go see their movies (and read their books and articles). That's why it's called "entertainment" - it ain't real.
All metaphors break down if you apply them to strenuously. They also uncover parallels that the metaphor's architect did not intend. Between movie-making agit-prop and actual story, is this leftist interpretation more Morpheus, or Neo/Smith?
Or is it just a movie, with some interesting things to say, and its share of banality, too?
May 26, 2003 12:11 PM
May 26, 2003 12:12 PM
Oops. Sorry for the duplicated comments. The first effort returned an error due to an invalid email address. I edited it to include the "@" and the "." rather than " -at-" and "-dot-", and reposted. Apparently, I didn't need to.
I just wanted to let you know I wasn't trying to spam your comments!
May 26, 2003 12:16 PM
Another way of looking how the matrix was 'made' is through the eyes of kaballah. If you understand the four worlds and the doctrines then all you had to do is to go from 'thoughts as things' which is a key component of the doctrine to .. people living in the world of thought which, well, is equivalent to the notion of the matrix. if you can make this leap you can put the politics aside and find all the plot elements and concepts in jewish and vedic lore. now as the movie goes on to the apocalypse i wonder if anyone else will prefer to see nero's as campbell's hero's journey and realize something about the meaning of individuation in the process.. the key is to see the movie as the externalization of what is the internal process of liberation as vetted by the scriptures.
screw the external politics, learn to stop the bullets.
May 27, 2003 06:25 PM
Here in the real world, the main result of The Matrix series will be a two billion dollar funds transfer from movie-goers (some who tend to be pretentious) to the AOL/Time-Warner Corporation. Nothing particularly left-wing or subversive in that.
May 29, 2003 01:10 PM
Right on Del.
If you want to apply the philosophy of the Matrix to real life, think of it this way:
1) The Matrix was a surprise blockbuster hit in 1999, full of science fiction, kung fu, special effects, and philosophical/religious references.
2) In 2003 two sequels emerge. Almost everyone feels compelled to see the first sequel, just because it's the Matrix. As Morpheus would say, it is their destiny, they have no choice. Although the W bros put up a horrible script, one rich in allusions but completely lacking in substance or style, fans everywhere feel compelled to search for a deeper meaning in it. Since the movie doesn't really make too much sense, countless hours can be spent analyzing it.
3) The Matrix Reloaded ends on a cliffhanger. People feel compelled to return to the theaters in November so that they can see how the 5 million loose ends will be tied up. "Everything is going exactly as planned."
4) Although moviegoers believe that they are watching an profoundly philosophical movie, this is an illusion. As Del said, all that is occurring is a massive transfer of funds. Neat action scenes and numerous philosophical allusions (but nothing that actually makes sense) are what encourages people to not question reality, to accept that the Matrix is a good thinking movie, and to fork over more and more money in the form of repeated theater viewing, DVD rental/purchases, video game buys, and so on.
May 29, 2003 08:24 PM
The matrix plays on people's fears. It brings up the notion that our reality is the by-product of another [real] reality, making the concept of that reality, virtual. But; for there to be a virtual reality, it has to be in contrast with [real] reality. Otherwise, it is just reality. Sadly, too many people believe in the Matrix's escapism, which is why it's so popular amongst subversives.
This is discussed in more detail in Putnam's article: "Other Minds in Mind, language, and reality" (Cambridge University Press [NY] 1975). The article has the old "brain in a vat" idea. That is, if we are actually brains in vats, with data fed to us simulating reality, could we tell the difference? As you can see, the movie "The Matrix" was about 25 years out of date.
Backing up this argument in a sense depends on your metaphysical position. If you believe that we have something like 'souls' and some sort of intrinsic connection to 'reality', then you believe, probably, that we can intuit that we are, or are not brains in vats, and your argument then depends on your conception of what a soul is, so good luck avoiding circularity on that one. If you're a materialist, then you're really stuck... in the vat, since any signals can be externally duplicated.
May 30, 2003 11:38 AM
May 30, 2003 11:40 AM
"The Matrix" plays on people's fears. It brings up the notion that our reality is the by-product of another [real] reality, making the concept of that reality, virtual. But; for there to be a virtual reality, it has to be in contrast with [real] reality. Otherwise, it is just reality. Sadly, too many people believe in the Matrix's escapism, which is why it's so popular amongst subversives.
Answering this question depends on your metaphysical position. If you believe that we have something like 'souls' and some sort of intrinsic connection to 'reality', then you believe, probably, that we can intuit that we are, or are not brains in vats, and your argument then depends on your conception of what a soul is, so good luck avoiding circularity on that one. If you're a materialist, then you're really stuck... in the vat, since any signals can be externally duplicated.
May 30, 2003 04:19 PM
so the matrix is propaganda, whats new? the only frightening thing is i saw a Polish movie called Sex Mission (title in english) with exactly the same message and the same way of showing it made in 1988 or thereabouts, but this time not left wing propaganda but right wing propaganda. Seems liike times have changed but the methods of both systems are getting very similar. Watch the movie and look at it form the point of view that the system they are showng is the communist system and u have the matrix. Nice to see i was finally able to find an article about the matrix realtionship to propaganda.
paul fornal |
October 18, 2003 05:18 AM
the matrix is the first film ive seen in a long time that made me think about im sick of stupid action films where in order to save the world from mass destruction you must kill off the bad guy and follow the heros blood bath on the way i say thank you to the wachowski brothers for finally setting some acceptable film making standards
October 20, 2003 09:45 AM
As far as I know The Matrix was written by the Wachowski brothers who are Kabbalah Students. Since I studied Kabbalah too I can say that it is totally related. Kabbalah is mostly based on numbers and calculations. There's even a spiritual kabbalistic reason for this movie to come out on the dates it did.
Kabbalah is about achieving light and at the end Neo achieves it. Neo I think is the representation of all of us, like he did in the movie he was going to the matrix to represent us.
I think the message is that we all have to be like him, because we all have the power to save this world. We just need to see beyond the materialistic world, be ourselves to be able to identify were the real love is and to awaken those who can't. The ones who can't are represented in the movie as the Smiths, they are all the same because they don't feel they are just a creation of the material world. That's why he couldn't kill Neo, because Love is stronger than anything and Neo also is the representation of all the good people's love that are outside the box and see beyond. And toguether we can do miracles.
Valeria Scinto |
December 10, 2003 09:57 PM
Valeria Scinto |
December 10, 2003 09:59 PM
Especially interesting to me is how the physics submits to the politics--humans being used as batteries makes no Thermodynamic sense whatsoever--the humans must be eating MORE chemical energy then they are producing--but makes perfect sense in a political/social sense--we live in an illusionary capitalist model, designed not to meet the needs of humans but to keep humans from rebelling, and for the benefit of the designers of our economy--or so claims the movie. (Or so I claim the movie claims--whatever...)
July 6, 2004 10:08 PM
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October 26, 2004 04:12 PM