Episode 4: Trip Out Tremendously

Put down the drugs and listen to Triple Play instead. Please.

This month Kiyan and Dylan digitized and uploaded themselves into the virtual world. No it’s not Tron, it’s The Matrix. Tron doesn’t even have 3 movies, the third one got canceled last we heard. Anyway, read on below for some links and show notes, and listen in to find out how The Matrix got made and what we thought of it.

A good starting place for any self respecting Matrix fan would be The Wachowskis themselves. The New Yorker published a comprehensive overview of their film career that you can read on their website.

If you’re curious about how the Matrix came about, check out this Time article which details not only the conception of the Matrix, but also a lawsuit surrounding its underlying idea.

A great source for background information on the making of the first film, from it’s conception to casting to special effects, would be The Making of The Matrix documentary, included on the DVD releases. It has been graciously posted to YouTube.

The casting of the Matrix was some of the more complex and involved casting than in the previous trilogies we’ve covered. For an overview of this casting, check out this short piece. For a more in-depth look, a lot of our specific examples and notes about Keanu’s casting came from this CinemaBlend article. For just weird casting news and rumors, as well as a glimpse into an early Matrix idea, be sure to read Empire’s summary of that time when Will Smith turned down the Matrix.

The curious conception of the Matrix extended well beyond the first film, and the second and third have many stories behind them as well. For an interesting look at the second film in particular, you can watch a short 20 minute documentary, called PRELOAD, on YouTube.

We mention quite a few fun little facts throughout the episode, most of which center around the extensive Martial Arts training that the cast went through to make the film. You can find more of these over here.

For an in-depth look into some of the visual and special effects of Revolutions, be sure to read this article detailing the final Zion battle scene.

If you couldn’t tell from the episode, both of us loved the practical effects that went into making the freeway scene in Matrix Reloaded. You can see pictures and a nice overview of the 1 mile freeway that was constructed here. For those who prefer the video medium, you can view two different behind the scenes videos detailing the freeway chase scene here and here.

For any other visual and behind the scenes information, IGN provides a good article that can serve as a nice bookend following this podcast episode.

So now that the behind the scenes is out of the way, let’s ask the big question: What the heck happened in these films? If Kiyan and Dylan’s attempt at an explanation left you wanting a more in-depth film analysis, then be sure to read some of their subject material, David Edwards’ The Matrix: An Ideological Analysis.

For those who don’t want a heavy paper to start of 2016, there is also a slightly less in depth plot analysis and summary at TheMatrix101.com.

These show notes started with the Wachowskis, and it seems only fair that it should end with them too. So, here’s a fairly lengthy interview with the Wachowskis, where they discuss all of their films and what happens behind the scenes.

So that’s all for The Matrix. Be sure to tune in next month where we explore some expanded universe Matrix topics, before returning the month after (that would be March, if you lost track) with our next trilogy.

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