Matrix 2.0, The: Battle for Zion

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Overall rating 

I watched this over the weekend and while I admired some parts of it, I can’t really recommend it either.

Obviously pretty much everyone has issues with the original films as they are, and there have been a few, including myself, who have attempted or will be attempting to make something better out of them. I think in all instances there are places where the editors have succeeded, but also places that don’t work and cause problems with the experience. This edit is no different.

While there is a ton of material that can be removed from these 2 films when combining them into one, I think sometimes we may try to take away too much. One of the main goals of this edit was to make a faster Matrix film, and obviously when you take away over 60% of the material it will be faster. The problem with this is that things that should be fleshed out aren’t, and certain notes aren’t hit right. Some explanations are left out to be assumed where there isn’t a clear assumption to be made. There are parts where I think I may have been somewhat lost or confused if I hadn’t seen these films before.

Also with excessive cutting the risk of noticeable or hard cuts rises, and it shows in this edit. For the first 45 minutes or so it’s not too bad being only noticeable here and there, but later in the movie, particularly the last half hour or so there are quite a few noticeable hard cuts that for me at least really detracted from what I was watching.

I think perhaps a better goal for a runtime would have been 2.25-2.5 hours long. That’s still close to 50% cut but would allow much more flexibility in cuts and allow some aspects to be explored more fully.

A solid effort, but too many technical problems. 6/10.

Owner's reply

Firstly, thanks for taking the time to leave feedback - always appreciated. I'm sorry that the Matrix 2.0 wasn't really your cup of tea. I'd like to ask a few qualifying questions:
1. What were you expecting from the film? The goal of the edit was never to simply be "faster", like you said: it's not Reloaded and Revolutions cut down, but an entirely new story (based on the shell of the original story). Were you expecting the same order of events and storyline (just faster)? Should I make this clearer in the description?
2. What do you mean by "hard cuts"? The last 45 minutes edits together seamlessly scenes from Reloaded and Revolutions. The scene switches rapidly from "Neo and the Architect" to "Zion battle" to "Hammer racing home"is this what you meant by hard cuts (the cuts are abrupt by design)? Or is it some of the cuts in the "talky" scenes (like the second council scene, which I have tweaked for the DVD)?
3. Why do you think 45 minutes longer would help? What extra would you have put in? What was unclear in the story? I agree that I ask the audience to assume some things (particularly the parlay with the machines, which happens off stage in is revealed as a voice over), but I didn't think that anything was *too* difficult to follow. What did you find difficult / confusing? If anything, I would think maybe 5 minutes of direct exposition could be helpful (adding 45 minutes would make the movie overweight and sluggish, I think).
4. I don't agree that having seen the originals would be of benefit - I actually think it's a problem! Going into the movie you have all these expectations, and you sit there saying "oh he's cut that", and, "oh that was abrupt, I expected scene xx to follow" and "oh, he cut out my favourite scene". I often find I have to watch an extreme fanedit (one where the story is changed) twice, once to exorcise the "demons" of the previous film, next to watch the actual film!
Technical issues - pure technical issues (jarring cuts, audio cutoffs, flickers) or story problems. Technical issues I can tryto correct. If you don't like the story, then there's nothing I can do about that one! I realise this edit will probably polarise people (feedback so far has either been "awesome" or "this isn't for me"!), so if you didn't dig the film I can respect that.

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