Lilly Wachowski, one of the directors of the original Matrix trilogy, along with Lana Wachowski, says that anger and rage inspired the siblings to create the films. Lilly directed all three of the original films with Lana, but will not be involved in the upcoming Matrix 4. Instead, she is currently working on Work in Progress, a Showtime comedy that deals with issues of queer and transgender identity. She also recently hit out at Elon Musk and Ivanka Trump for tweeting about “taking the red pill,” an allusion to ignoring warnings about coronavirus and a reference to the first Matrix movie.

The Wachowskis changed the sci-fi action genre upon the release of The Matrix in 1999. The movie, which starred Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss and Hugo Weaving, was a critical and box office smash, and spawned two sequels, as well as a video game and animated companion compilation. The themes the films deal with, such as revolution, resistance and fighting the power, remain relevant today, and the first movie in particular is held up as a classic of both action and sci-fi filmmaking. In the years since the first film’s release, the Wachowskis came out as transgender women.

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Now, in a wide-ranging interview with THR, Lilly Wachowski has spoken about her inner motivations for making The Matrix. Talking about how her earlier work relates to her current show, Wachowski says that her “transness,” which she was struggling with internally during that time, led to a lot of rage and anger. This, in turn, inspired some of the themes seen in the movie.

“[The Matrix was] born out of a lot of anger and a lot of rage, and it’s rage at capitalism and corporatized structure and forms of oppression. [The] bubbling, seething rage within me was about my own oppression, that I [was forcing] myself to remain in the closet.”

Wachowski goes on to say that now that she has come out publicly as transgender, a number of fans of The Matrix have said it helped with their own journey to coming out. People have come up to her, she said, and spoken about how important the films were as part of their coming out. She ended by saying, “I’m extraordinarily grateful that I could offer that to people.”

In the first film, the most obvious allusion to gender identity comes in the form of the character Switch, who was played by Australian actress Belinda McCrory. The original plan was for the character to be played by a man in the real world scenes, and for McCrory to play them in scenes set in The Matrix. This plan never materialized, though, apparently due to Warner Bros. Regardless, the final iteration of the character is not stereotypically male or female, and could be interpreted as gender fluid.

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The “rage” that Wachowski talks about can certainly be felt in the original Matrix trilogy, and arguably helps the films succeed. The very real anger comes across in the narrative, and allows the audience to sympathize with the cause of the humans, and ultimately makes for an enjoyable watching experience in The Matrix.

Source: THR

Key Release Dates
  • The Matrix Resurrections (2021)Release date: Dec 22, 2021
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