Not even a full week has gone by since we got an exciting new trailer for The Matrix Resurrections, but with the film’s premiere just two weeks away, Warner Bros. is clearly intent on amping up the excitement. The company released another trailer on Monday, and while new footage is in short supply, everything we’ve seen thus far is finally put into useful context.
The first trailer was released in September and was set to Jefferson Airplane’s “White Rabbit” to drive home the red pill/blue pill theme. We saw Neo in therapy with a smarmy psychiatrist played by Neil Patrick Harris, and it soon became clear that we were in a brave new Matrix-constructed world. People take two blue pills daily, and everyone is glued to their iPhones and tablets—whatever it takes to keep the masses sedated.
Last week’s trailer was aptly titled “Déjà Vu” since it riffed on that key moment from the first Matrix film when Neo saw the same black cat walk past a doorway in the Lafayette Hotel. We learned that the entire preceding “reality”—i.e., the events of the original trilogy—had been changed, but not many other details were revealed.
After months of sly hints, we now have a full official premise:
In The Matrix Resurrections, return to a world of two realities: one, everyday life; the other, what lies behind it. To find out if his reality is a physical or mental construct, to truly know himself, Mr. Anderson will have to choose to follow the white rabbit once more. And if Thomas… Neo… has learned anything, it’s that choice, while an illusion, is still the only way out of—or into—the Matrix. Of course, Neo already knows what he has to do. But what he doesn’t yet know is the Matrix is stronger, more secure and more dangerous than ever before. Déjà vu.
[Keanu] Reeves reprises the dual roles of Thomas Anderson/Neo, the man once saved from the Matrix to become the savior of humankind, who will once again have to choose which path to follow. [Carrie-Anne] Moss portrays the iconic warrior Trinity… or is she Tiffany, a suburban wife and mother of three with a penchant for superpowered motorcycles?
Morpheus is played by Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, while Jessica Henwick plays the hacker Bugs, aka the White Rabbit, who has long idolized the legend of Neo and is on a mission to find him again. Jonathan Groff plays Thomas Anderson’s business partner, described as “a slick, confident corporate type with insouciant charm, a disarming smile, and an eye on the bottom line—everything Mr. Anderson is not.”
Lambert Wilson returns as The Merovingian, a rogue Matrix program with his own agenda; Daniel Bernhardt will reprise his role as Agent Johnson; and Jada Pinkett Smith is returning as Niobe. Priyanka Chopra Jonas plays “a young woman with a wisdom that belies her years and an ability to see the truth, no matter how murky the waters.” The cast also includes Toby Onwumere, Max Riemelt, Eréndira Ibarra, Andrew Caldwell, Brian J. Smith, Ellen Hollman, and Christina Ricci.
“We can’t see it, but we’re all trapped inside these strange, repeating loops,” we hear in a voiceover as the new trailer opens. Thomas and “Tiffany” (aka Trinity) have a brief moment of recognition in a coffee shop, and we get several quick scenes from the original film interspersed with new takes on those same scenes—e.g., Hugo Weaving’s original Agent Smith’s “billions of people just living out their lives” line is echoed by Groff’s character. Soon, Thomas finds himself in the familiar (to us) virtual white space in complete silence. He gingerly touches the back of his head to check for cables and says, “I remember this.”
We see Morpheus showing Thomas images from the reality he’d forgotten on a big screen in a darkened room. “They taught you good,” he says. “Made you believe their world was all you deserved. But some part of you knew that was a lie. Some part of you remembered what was real.” Another war is brewing between humans and the Matrix, but there might be a few surprises in store. “It’s so déjà vu, and yet it’s obviously all wrong,” Bugs says. “Maybe this isn’t the story we think it is.”
Also, it seems that Trinity is in trouble. Morpheus tells Thomas that if he wants to see her again, he needs to “fight for her.” And fight he does. Everyone fights. A lot. And it all looks awesome. But there are hints that Trinity’s fate might already be sealed. “I saw this in a dream,” she tells Neo as they stand on that familiar rooftop from another reality. “My dream ended here.” We can’t wait to see how that dream plays out for real.
The Matrix Resurrections hits theaters on December 22, 2021. As always, we strongly recommend only going to see films in theaters if you have been fully vaccinated and wear a mask for the duration of the screening.
Listing image by YouTube/Warner Bros.