OK, this is perhaps the definitive version of the matrix sequels in my opinion. That said, the ending is way too clunky. Literally the first 2 hours of this edit are flawless, but the cracks begin to appear with the choice to utterly cut the Bane subplot. There is no good way to explain Neos blindness and portray Trinity's survival. I know a lot of people don't enjoy Bane, but for the sake of continuity and flow, you can't allow your frustrations with the Bane subplot to compromise the flow of the film. I strongly suggest the edit stay mostly the same, but add 15 minutes of Bane and allow Neo to portray his real life powers to help the film. The edit, in my view, need to appear as the intended version of the story. That cannot happen without Neo showing real life powers, Bane blinding Neo, and the Oracle telling Neo the line that Mr. Smith says at the end. These 3 pieces are critical to wrapping everything together. If those were added, this would be the absolute, definitive and perfect ending for the Matrix story
I love the first Matrix film. To me, it's one of the best sci-fi films ever made. It somehow managed to be thought-provoking while also being edgy, cool, and sexy (with truly exceptional cinematography). Unfortunately, the next two films were bloated, dragged in certain moments, were over-saturated in bad CGI, and had an over-usage of exposition; the action scenes, despite the bad CGI, were still mostly ace though (I have no idea why in the hell most faneditors are seemingly hell bent in removing the Burly Brawl! I mean, shorten it and remove the shots of bad CGI? Sure. But outright removal?! It reintroduces Smith and his new abilities! It makes no goddamn narrative sense to remove it!).
This edit mostly fixed the said problems I mentioned (thank you so much for the removing that stupid rave sequence), while mostly keeping intact the action sequences ( I really cared about the Burly Brawl and the Highway Chase Sequence, both of which were done well). However, the fanedit does end up being overly ambitious in certain moments. The editing with the Oracle near the end was a bit wonky, and how Neo was portrayed in losing his eyes was iffy (it honestly didn't make sense that Trinity didn't help Neo in guiding him to the Deus Ex Machina baby-face thing in the end). The only other edit I straight up didn't like was in the beginning of the Reloaded segment: because you took out his flight to the Oracle after fighting the 3 Agents, it seemed a little goofy that he randomly shoots into the sky and then the film immediately cuts to the ship reaching Zion. That just seemed....awkward. Also, the sudden disappearance of the Key Maker seemed a bit....odd.
But it must be said: despite these flaws, in theory these ideas were fantastic. Narratively speaking, everything was surprisingly consistent, and made me realize just how unnecessary it was in telling this story in 2 separate films. This made me forgive the shortcomings of the fanedit for the most part, which is why I'd say it's worth at least a single viewing.
This is a vastly superior cut to the muddled sequels that were officially released. It is a better narrative, making an intelligent, concise, and exciting follow up to The Matrix. It wasn't perfect. There were a few cuts that didn't quite work to fill the narrative gaps, but it was still better than the bloated two sequels. I would recommend it to anyone who has seen those two films and want a different version. I would still have cut down that awful scene where New fights the multiple Smiths but it turns in to a bad early 2000's CGI nightmare. That scene was the weakest part of the fanfix. Other than that, this was a vastly superior follow up to the masterpiece that was The Matrix.
The first Matrix was an actual experience. It made cinema history and for good reason. I remember seeing it for the first time like it was yesterday. And I'm really happy that it was also a complete film, no cliffhangers, no wink wink for sequels. Unfortunately this wasn't the case for the two, now three, sequels. The first sequel was just one big, cgi-fest filler, with constant action and very little substance and the second one was just a flat out disappointment. But I was ok with it because I could just watch the first one and ignore that the sequels were ever made. The last few days I delved deep into fanedits, searching high and low for any movie that I wished was good but it wasn't, or perfected and I stumbled into this. And I thought, why not give it a shot!
Technical wise, although this is heavily edited as you can tell from the new runtime, it was pretty great! The only scenes where you could tell something has been tampered with, was the third act. But still, it doesn't retract from the narrative or confuse the viewer, you just "feel" something is cut out. But still, I don't think anything better could be done, since we needed so many changes for it to make it work. So job well done here!!
On the narrative side, I can safely say that the editor saved the films for me. I mean, if I want to have a closure for the Matrix in future rewatch, this is the way to go! My only issue is that, since this fanedit was released in 2016 so the editor knows how painfully outdated the cgi is, he could trim the bad cgi from action sequences. Which actually brings me to my next negative point, that now there is again too much action. 3-4 action sequences one longer than the other. So if you trimmed the bad cgi from the action sequences, you could kill two birds with one stone, reduce bad cgi aaand trim down the too long action sequences.
So I definitely recommend this to anyone who didn't like the sequels! I mean, if you don't like this fanedit, then the sequels are not salvageable for you in any way.
Thank you Jerick and thanks to anyone who read my review!
I am quite impressed by how well this works as one film! Having the warning of incoming sentinels to Zion at the beginning and the battle happening at the end, rather than those two things in two separate films, really adds to the weight of it all (and the anxiety!). And I really don't miss anything that was cut EXCEPT for Trinity's badass bike flip explosion scene.
I think what's crucial from my experience is that my girlfriend, who has not seen Reloaded or Revolutions, did not notice anything missing as far as the narrative goes. So, for someone's first watch, it works! Yes, during the last third, when the most aggressive edits are made to Revolutions, she noticed some abrupt shifts where clearly something was cut out, but she was not left confused or wanting anything else. Also, with these edits, Niobe's character really feels much more crucial as the amount of time between her scenes is reduced. One thing that did leave my girlfriend asking questions was when Niobe's ship comes crashing in just in time and they hit the EMP... earlier in the film they mentioned needing all the ships to stick around, but where are all the other ships? I couldn't remember what happened in the full movies, so we looked it up and it turns out it was part of the Bane narrative - he destroyed or disabled them. So the question of "why didn't they plan on having an EMP ready to go in Zion?!" becomes a glaring thing and makes the whole argument against "should we let ships go look for the Nebuchadnezzar" more valid. Other than that, I missed Trinity in the last half of the movie. Seems like she wasn't around much after the highway chase scene - though I'm glad so much of that scene was in this edit.
Anyway, I will def return to this! And I'm glad I watched this in preparation for the new one as I don't think I'm missing anything.