This morning, Warner Bros. released the first theatrical trailer for The Matrix Resurrections, featuring a return to the world of The Matrix with co-creator and director lana Wachowski for the first time since The Matrix Revolutions in 2003. The trailer featured Neo (Keanu Reeves), Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss), and a number of new characters (or are they reinventions of old characters?), played by actors like Neil Patrick Harris, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, and Jonathan Groff. It also featured one particular recurring motif from the first installment of The Matrix, complete with a song that matched up with it perfectly.
The motif? The red and blue pills, proffered by Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) in the first movie as a "last chance before everything changes" option for Neo. The song? "White Rabbit" by Jefferson Airplane.
You might remember that The Matrix started with a listless Thomas Anderson (Reeves before becoming Neo fully) at a dead-end office job, when his computer started communicating with him, directing him to "follow the white rabbit." The line was a reference to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, but in the film manifested as a young woman at a club, who Neo had to follow in order to find enlightenment.
The pre-Matrix mythology of Alice's white rabbit was previously chronicled by Jefferson Airplane, who used the Alice story (Alice's own pills) as a metaphor for recreational drug use and the mind-expansion that came with it. In both "White Rabbit" and The Matrix, you have one pill (the blue pill) that does nothing, and allows you to resume your life as before, or another (the red pill), which offers the promise of adventure and a whole new world.
In the trailer for The Matrix Resurrections, it appears as though the blue pill has been further weaponized to bury Neo's awareness of The Matrix, likely prescribed by his psychiatrist (played by Harris). Throughout the trailer, you see him taking and/or spilling blue pills a number of times.
In the context of The Matrix, the pills have also been seen as a metaphor for self-discovery, as filmmakers Lana and Lilly Wachowski have both come out as trans in the time since the original trilogy was made. During the 1990s, a common male-to-female transgender hormone therapy involved Premarin, a dark red tablet. Lilly Wachowski confirmed this theory during an interview last year.
"The Matrix...was all about the desire for transformation, but it was all coming from a closeted point of view," Wachowski told The Independent. "We had the character of Switch, who would be a man in the real world and then a woman in the Matrix, and that's where [both of] our headspaces were."
Directed by series co-creator Lana Wachowski, The Matrix Resurrections brings back original franchise stars Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss. Other cast members include Christina Ricci, Priyanka Chopra, Neil Patrick Harris, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Ellen Hollman.0comments
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