The Matrix was an extremely popular film, and I suspect just about all of us have seen it, and I would be surprised if any of us didn’t love it.
Now as a film buff I always think of Dark City, and The 13th Floor as similar films that were released at a similar time with a very similar overall plot point: The Existential world pulled over our eyes to conceal a hidden truth from us. I personally think that those other two films present the subject in a more artistically interesting, while Matrix is more of a standard Hollywood action film. Of course the action and the special effects have a better appeal, but I think there is one other thing that makes The Matrix stand out to the audience. How the truth is presented to the protagonist.
Its served straight-up. Take the red pill and you agree to see the truth, but the blue pill is the status quo and acceptance that the lie exists, but you choose ignorance.
This is later revisited with the mole Cypher who is regretting his decision.
This presentation has universal appeal. First it offers some great fantasy escapism, as Neo is nobody special, and The Matrix is such a good copy of our world that indeed you could be living the lie right now, and we can all see ourselves as Neo sitting at his soulless corporate job.
And while Cypher presents a very good argument about wanting to be ignorant of the grim future, how many of us really wish for ignorance? Do you really wish Santa Clause was real? That a loved one never told you they were terminally ill? That they made two other Matrix movies?
Sure we wish for a nicer reality, but we NEVER wish for ignorance.
And of course the tale of a hero discovering they were living a lie is a VERY common theme in literature as well as film.
While I imagine discoveries of lies of theatrical proportions are VERY rare, its not uncommon for somebody to uncover a massive lie. For me it was gun control, which I supported and thought was a great idea…until I started looking into the issue objectively.
The inspiration of this post is this speech by Dennis Henigan, when I first started watching it I was thinking about fisking the speech. Only it didn’t take me long to realize that besides his name and his job title everything he was saying was a lie.
Well straight-up blatant lies, Half-truths, and smatterings of “studies” his group conducted for the expressed purpose of having a “Study” that stated gun control worked.
Linoge also covered a similar subject about how Mayors Against Illegal Guns often misrepresents their membership numbers.
The real human nature is no different than the fictional reaction in books and film to discovery of a big lie. Rebellion!
I began supporting gun rights, as well as confronting my former allies. The more I fight the less I doubt that my change was a good idea.
Linoge points out that because of the internet both sides are readily available to anybody interested. Back in the 90s the anti-gun talking points were being sent into my home on every news station. I couldn’t tell you how I could find a pro-gun publication. Certainly it would take a very strong level of determination.
These days I encounter VERY few people who are like myself. Good-natured, but ignorant on the issue. Most of them are the true believers, and those who are paid to agree with the anti-gun position.
That isn’t very surprising.
I don’t get paid for what I do, but I’m glad to be on the correct side of the issue.