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Reboot: Could A Matrix Prequel Redeem The Series?

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Reboot: Could A Matrix Prequel Redeem The Series? Empty Reboot: Could A Matrix Prequel Redeem The Series?

Post by Admin on Thu Feb 11, 2010 6:51 pm

Adam Best | Feb 11, 2010

After re-watching The Matrix, I’ve been pondering a Matrix prequel for about the past week. It can work. Matter of fact, a Matrix prequel could end up being the best installment in the series. Here’s why…
The Keanu/Neo Factor

Keanu Reeves. He didn’t hold back the original, but he was in the Luke Skywalker role. In a lot of ways, it is one of the easier roles in the film. All he had to be was the doe in the woods for about 75% of the film, and then as it reached its climax he turned into a confident and willing hero. Sure, his role had an arc, but it didn’t have a lot of depth or emotion. Morpheus, Trinity, Cypher, hell, even Agent Smith were all so much more invested in the war that was taking place, regardless of which side they were on. By the time Neo realized what war he was in, its stakes and who he might be, he was already at the Oracle’s crib with a decision to make. He seemed too shocked to truly digest anything and then — boom! — he was called to action. As for that decision, that wasn’t even all that heartfelt. He didn’t have any time to even struggle with it, and deep down I think we all knew he wasn’t going to actually sacrifice himself, despite his efforts. The protagonist role and the actor playing said protagonist could both be stronger in a prequel.
The Storyline

As for the plot, it was pretty incredible. But we joined the fight pretty late in the game. I’m sure the earlier struggles of Zion and its founders were far more difficult. We enter this world as Morpheus and his fellow Zionites are on the verge of finally being able to go to war with the agents of the Matrix, instead of always running from them. What’s cool is that we discover the Matrix and what is possible as Neo does, we make that journey with him. But wouldn’t it be cooler to see that actual discovery? That would be much more compelling. Also, the sequels got tripped up completely lost in philosophy and the increasingly blurred line between what was real and what was the Matrix. The sequels were a clunky mix of exposition and redonkulous action sequences (Which sometimes the technology couldn’t keep up with. For instance, the Neo vs. the Smiths battle in The Matrix Reloaded. That looked video-gamish, and not in a good way). All the incoherent, overthunk exposition really kind of unraveled and ultimately weakeneed what we loved about the first film. Focusing on a prequel could undo a lot of that damage.
Bring Back Morpheus

The best character in The Matrix series is Morpheus and it’s not even close. You can hear, smell, taste and see the hell he has been through for the cause he believes in every single time he acts or utters a word. Instantly, you fall in love with the character because you know that without Morpheus there would be no resistance, no war, no mankind. The Oracle even says that without Morpheus they would be lost (something the sequels seemed to backtrack on, only to come full circle once again). Here’s what I want to see: A.) What compelled Morpheus to take the red pill? B.) What compelled Morpheus to become the leader he becomes? Those questions could be answered in a prequel, and in dramatic fashion. Much like how we have recently seen Batman, Bond and Captain Kirk struggle to become heroes, and a young Morpheus would be equally compelling.

That young Morpheus (Chiwetel Ejiofor, who I have starring in everything, but it would have to be him.) figures out something is not right about the life he is living and the world which he lives in. He seeks answers and almost immediately finds the resistance. It is important that, unlike Neo, he figures a lot of it out on his own, finds the resistance and evades agents to become free. Morpheus isn’t Neo. Where Neo is natural ability, Morpheus is instinct, heart, etc. — all of the things that make us so very human. That’s why his discovery that he isn’t being allowed to truly be a living, breathing human is so important. This could all happen in engaging, rapid-fire fashion as we have seen someone freed from the Matrix before.

Things would then flash forward to Morpheus’ visit to the Oracle. It is then that he is told that he will find the One. But before he is told, the Oracle must give him a history lesson about the previous One. The One Morpheus told Neo about in The Matrix, the One who figured everything out, birthed the human revolution and helped found Zion. Morpheus would have heard about the One, urban legend, stuff like that, but the Oracle tells him the actual tale. This tale becomes the core of the movie, as Morpheus’ involvement serves as both the icebreaker and the link between the orginal installment and this prequel. It also serves as Morpheus’ motivation from there on out, giving the original installment more resonance than ever before.
The Original One

Who would play the One. Adrian Brody maybe? He even looks a little like Keanu Reeves, so that would support what was divulged, or at least attempted to be explained, in the sequels. Milo Ventimiglia also looks the part. Or the sequels could just be ignored, and someone else could be cast. Inglorious Basterds‘ Michael Fassbender is just waiting for his big shot — total star in the making. Alexander Skarsgård would certainly be a departure, but he’s all kinds of awesome. Lots of different way the filmmakers could potentially go here, and there isn’t necessarily a wrong answer. Except using Keaunu Reeves again, which they actually could very well do.

The One breaking himself out of the machines’ human-harvest pod somehow and the fight that followed would be nuts. How in the hell would he break himself out? After all, someone had to be first. How would he hack into the Matrix? He’d have to be a genius, a natural, a prodigy — Neo on steroids. How did he fight the machines? Free others? Build spaceships? EMPs? Who else would he free?

What would be awesome is if he died Tony Montana style taking on all comers while the others fled to a secret location that was Zion. Maybe he fights an army of agents while the sentinels attack their first-gen scrapheap ship. I’m talking about Aragorn taking on all of the enemies at Helm’s Deep by his lonesome. The machines guess that they won’t abandon the One, but it was his plan all along to hold off the agents, and sacrifice himself so the others can obliterate an onslaught of sentinels with the EMP device and escape to what will become Zion, undetected. The machines lose this fight because they underestimate the human heart and its ability to sacrifice.

You could even echo and improve upon the Neo-Trinity love story by having the original One have a love story of his own. It would only be fitting for his love interest to actually have to use the EMP and sacrifice the One’s life herself, at his command.

On one hand, it would be a tragedy. The One would lose his life so the bigger war could eventually be waged. On the other hand, it would be a tale of triumph. The One would allow a resistance that would eventually free mankind.
The Wachowski Brothers Wachowskis

They bombed with both the sequels and Speed Racer. Larry, er, Lana is getting all kinds of weird press because he-she is apparently no longer a man. Andy doesn’t do interviews either. They have no planned projects, not even as writers or producers (V for Vendetta). You could easily see them falling off the map and being forever remembered as one-hit wonders. Unlike George Lucas, the backstory is there for The Matrix and going backwards has always made more sense than going forward. They also could go the 3D route now and other amazing advancements in film technology have been made. Just imagine what they could pull off within the world of the Matrix over a decade later? You know they could secure a huge budget. Hell, M. Night Shyamalon is still living off The Sixth Sense.

This makes too much sense not to do. Oh, and to the Wachowskis Bros., if you steal my idea both of you will be women. Kidding. I piggybacked on your existing work just like you guys, er, people did the original concept from the Mother of the Matrix. All is fair in love, war and, apparently, film. Besides, here’s hoping the trend where studios and filmmakers actually listen to fans continues. Make them make a Matrix Prequel, Joel Silver. Call it The Matrix: Origins or something. Do it right. Make a billion dollars. Again, it just makes too much sense.

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