“The Matrix” by Andy and Larry Wachowski Essay (Critical Writing)- by EduBirdie

Table of Contents



Popular Culture Themes

Similar popular cultures in other films

Issues that emerge strongest

Sociological and cultural concepts

Reference List

Critical Writing on “The Matrix” by Andy and Larry Wachowski

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The matrix is a science fiction directed by Andy and Larry Wachowski. It was premiered in the theaters in the year 1999. It was produced by Joel Silver and distributed by Warner Brothers. The casts include Laurence Fishburne, Carry-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano, Keanu Reeves, Hugo Weaving, and Julian Arahanga.


Keanu Reeves who is a computer programmer in a blue chip software firm doubles up as a hacker known in the underground circles as Neo. He engages in all forms of computer crimes. He is not happy with the kind of life he lives.

He tries to redeem his image and bring meaning to his life while all of a sudden an unexpected computer presence, Morpheus appears on the screen of his monitor. It pronounces that the Matrix is with him and he should follow the white rabbit. Morpheus the captain of a space ship is Laurence Fishburne. He believes that Neo is the God’s messenger.

Laurence confesses to Neo on meeting him that all does not appear as he perceived. Laurence thinks that Neo is dubious and he intends to show him that he indeed is. Laurence who has learnt to manipulate the Matrix- a computer aided machine that is capable of controlling human minds. The Sentient agents stand on the way of Laurence and his associates from realizing their dream. The agents have been made to believe that Morpheus mission is to wipe from the surface of the earth the free thinking human beings.

The agents mission is to therefore to capture Morpheus and get to know the much details he has that may be helpful to their course. There is a very thin line between the reality and computer theatrics. This does not confuse the viewer. The structure of the story allows the audience to follow the action and comprehend what is unfolding the unrevealed secrets withstanding. For deeper understanding of the story line the viewer has to invest a reasonable level of intellectual participation.

Popular Culture Themes

In the Roman myths, Morpheus, is used to refer to the son of god of sleep that shaped dreams and sent people visions. Towards the end of the film, the metaphor of sleep and or waking up features as a key analogy of the thin line that appears between the underworld and the real world where Morpheus exists and where he introduces Neo to.

Because Morpheus is mythologically attached to sleep it is intriguing that the Morpheus that is feature prominently in the film is in touch with reality. In literal application, Morpheus implies one who shapes. For one to shape dreams he has to exist outside its boundaries hence be able to recognize them as dreams. This helps the viewers in discerning the character Morpheus in the film Matrix vis a vee the Roman Morpheus.

Film Studies ?

Activities of agent Smith especially when he is at the roof top are very similar to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s of the Terminator fame. This shows the film’s intertextuality. This shows that postmodern art is not founded in vacuum but is built from other arts and that represents real life. It is ironical that Matrix is all abut illusion versus reality. It is quite significant that the Matrix is all about salvation and redemption, atonement, and state of sinfulness.

Neo hides his money in disc form in a book called Simulacra and Simulation. The book is authored by postmodern theorist Jean Baudrillard. Jean contends in his book that the map precedes the territory (Baudrillard, 1994). He alludes that such images do become reality by themselves.

To him Gulf War was a virtual war comparable to video game displayed on monitors contrasted to real war that involve air raids and ground campaigns. This lends a lot to themes portrayed in the Matrix. The period within Neo starts featuring in the film is called Nihilism because during this period everything tends towards nothingness.

When Neo helps Troy with some money, Troy shows gratitude by saying the Neo is his Savior. He in fact tells Neo that he is his personal Jesus Christ. There are myriad Christian references made in the film. Troy and Neo engage in cyber crime known as hacking from where the virus Trojan horse associated with Greek Legend arise.

Similar popular cultures in other films

The theme of nature of reality and perception that features in the Matrix can also be found in Lewis Carroll’s Alice in the Wonderland. In fact the phrase follow the white rabbit is a direct reference from Alice in the Wonderland. Morpheus asks Neo how it feels following edubirdie.com rabbit down the tunnel like Alice did. The situation in which Neo is in resembles Alice conversation with Tweedledee and Tweedledum. These twins tell Alice that she is in the Red Kings dream. The moment the king stops dreaming, Alice would be no more.

The theme of illusion versus reality that features prominently in the Matrix is also evident in the Terminator movies that highlighted atonement, salvation and redemption, and fallenness. Both the movies exhibit intertextuality.

Intertextual reference comes out in the Matrix when space horror film produced by Ridley Scott is borrowed from when a bug is planted in Neo’s stomach. It represents invasion of sin at various levels of human life. Despite the fact that sin is forgiven just like Jesus did at his crucifixion, its persistence implies Neo must be a malware to save the technological world from its mess.

Issues that emerge strongest

Issues of Christianity feature prominently feature in the film. Morpheus tells Neo that he has been looking for him. He asserts that he can actually guide him. Biblically, Morpheus can be thought to be the biblical Israel waiting the Messiah. In Christianity the crucifix is also known as a scaffold that is repeatedly talked yelp.com about in the Matrix.. These words foreshadow the predicaments that Neo will face at the end of the movie. He dies to save ‘the world’ just like Jesus did.

Sociological and cultural concepts

Neo goes through a culture shock when he goes against the conventional rules in the society and is engulfed in new technological world, language, and culture. Elements of religion and metaphor are exhibited and one has to keep asking how modern day culture and religion converge in the matrix and how this movie connects to reality.

The viewer often asks whether “the one” is related to Christ and is capable of saving people from agents (Satan). The connection between the saved and the unplugged is shown. Hawethorne effect is shown when trinity suspects Neo has been bugged by the sentinels. The effect is exhibited when Sentinel changes her behavior because she suspects people watch and listen to her.

Reference List

Baudrillard, J. (1994). Simulacra and Simulation , translated by Sheila Faria

Glaser. Ann Arbor, Mi: University of Michigan Press.

“The Racial Contract” by Charles Mills Essay- by EduBirdie

Mills’ book explores the political philosophy of the social contract. “The Racial contract” was published at the end of the twentieth century, and it investigates the issue of racial relations in the world over 500 years. The book was considered controversial when it was first published.

Essay on “The Racial Contract” by Charles Mills

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However, the book has since become a useful tool in the study of political philosophy. The author explores several aspects of the social contract including Europe’s global domination, the relationship between whites and non-whites, the existence of full persons and non-persons, among Edubirdie other aspects. Using other existing philosophies, Mills shows how the racial contract has shaped the new world.

Mills’ philosophy is quite similar to both Marxist and Feminist based philosophies. According to Mills, philosophy is a discipline that is governed by its own set of “images, standard tropes, and classical scenes” (Mills 1).

When these aspects are merged with popular philosophical figures, they form a template that is synonymous with the philosophy discipline. This argument introduces the aspect of race in philosophy.

Philosophy is often considered a discipline of free thinkers who are not subject to racial and other vague inhibitions. However, Mills argues that just like in other academic disciplines, there are templates that shape philosophy.

The freethinking philosophers are guided by their interests as opposed to them delving into impersonal contemplations. Philosophy scholars find the likelihood of philosophers advancing ‘white-European interests’ unsettling.

However, a close analysis of some philosophers would validate this argument. Immanuel Kant and David Hume are some of the philosophers who have forwarded arguments that have elements of white supremacy.

Philosophy ?

Both of these philosophers believed that black people Reviews https://www.sitejabber.com/reviews/edubirdie.com have inferior cognitive abilities. This means that racism is not essentially a preserve of the ignorant populous.

The academic elite of the postmodern era also perpetuates racism. The concept of ‘white philosophy’ seems outrageous but Mills’ argument is strong enough to validate it.

According to Mills, “racial contract is the central component of the social contract” (Mills 87). This means that racism is an inevitable component of global political and economic activities. The dominance of Europe in these two areas acts as proof of racial contract.

Given the elements of a racial contract are still ongoing, the current racial equality achievements are just a sham. The truth is that efforts towards equality are initiated to give the people of color a false sense of contentment, complacency, and security.

The current equality is also meant to make the people of color depend more on the white people who ‘spearhead’ the equality efforts. Most people consider this era to be post-racial. This implies that no racial barriers exist in the current world.

However, several events and scenarios cast doubt on this premise. For instance, when President Obama was running his first election campaign, the race issue was dominant.

During that time, people barely paid attention to his economic or foreign policies, but they were more fascinated with the idea of a ‘black president.’ If this were the post-racial era, the issue of skin color would not have been that prominent.

Moreover, there are those who feel that the election of a black president serves as a distraction to modern racial oppression. For example, cases of racial profiling by the police are still rampant; the only difference is that they do not get as much publicity as they used to in the Civil Rights era.

“The Racial Contract” intertwines the issue of race and political philosophy. The mode of analysis used by the author raises and answers very important questions. The author also addresses the turn taken by racial inequality convincingly.

Works cited

Mills, Charles. The Racial Contract , New York, NY: Cornell University Press, 1997. Print.