The Matrix Reviews

Top Critic
Keith Simanton
Seattle Times
October 21, 2013
Extremely violent, extremely preposterous, extremely entertaining, The Matrix succeeds at two extremely difficult tasks: as a vast, exciting virtual-reality movie and as a defibrillator for Keanu Reeves' big screen career.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
David Denby
New Yorker
October 21, 2013
The movie is nonsense, but it does achieve a brazenly chic high style -- black-on-black, airborne, spasmodic.
Top Critic
Mark Caro
Chicago Tribune
October 21, 2013
The Wachowskis and cinematographer Bill Pope take advantage of currently available technical trickery to create visually distinct levels of reality while setting high-speed cameras in motion to make the action sequences particularly dynamic and fluid.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Keith Phipps
AV Club
October 21, 2013
Where other films are done in by the freedom offered by computer effects, The Matrix integrates them beautifully.
Top Critic
Todd McCarthy
Variety
June 5, 2007
A must-see among genre fans, especially guys in their teens and 20s, for whom the script's pretentious mumbo-jumbo of undergraduate mythology, religious mysticism and technobabble could even be a plus rather than a dramatic liability.
Top Critic
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
June 5, 2007
There's not much humor to keep it all life-size, and by the final stretch it's become bloated, mechanical, and tiresome.
Top Critic
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
February 9, 2006
Another slice of overlong, high concept hokum.
Top Critic
Ray Conlogue
Globe and Mail
April 25, 2003
For those who have been waiting for movies to catch up with the graphic possibilities of comic books, wait no longer: The Matrix is among us.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
May 11, 2001
The Matrix soars with its feet in the air -- the rest crash-lands.
Top Critic
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
February 14, 2001
A wildly cinematic futuristic thriller that is determined to overpower the imagination, The Matrix combines traditional science-fiction premises with spanking new visual technology in a way that almost defies description.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Top Critic
Jay Carr
Boston Globe
January 1, 2000
Silly and dense!
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 1, 2000
The Matrix did not bore me. It interested me so much, indeed, that I wanted to be challenged even more.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
January 1, 2000
The movie is kinetic, atmospheric, visually stunning, and mind-bending.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Rod Dreher
New York Post
January 1, 2000
A more technically dazzling synthesis of action choreography and cutting-edge computer graphics has not been seen since James Cameron's T2.
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
January 1, 2000
As Keanu says: Whoa!
Top Critic
Susan Stark
Detroit News
January 1, 2000
The Matrix is the coolest -- a journey into a genuinely original vision of our cyberfuture that will have you checking your own reality by the time it's over.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
January 1, 2000
| Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Gemma Files
Film.com
January 1, 2000
The Matrix is mainly also an exercise in outrageous style over substance featuring flowing trenchcoats, sunglasses at night, and LOTS of guns.
Top Critic
Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
January 1, 2000
There's a kind of liberating, almost transforming energy in this film; it lights you up and sends you out all giddy with silliness.
Top Critic
Janet Maslin
New York Times
January 1, 2000
The most salient things any prospective viewer need know is that Keanu Reeves makes a strikingly chic Prada model of an action hero.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Top Critic
Steven Rosen
Denver Post
January 1, 2000
The Matrix not only is a failure as a science-fiction movie -- long on explanation, short on inspiration -- but it doesn't do anything interesting with the futuristic vision that it takes forever to explain.
Top Critic
Philip Wuntch
Dallas Morning News
January 1, 2000
The only things energetic about The Matrix are its special effects.
Top Critic
Kevin Maynard
Mr. Showbiz
January 1, 2000
The Matrix is too much of an outer-limits head-trip to resist!
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
January 1, 2000
A blast of Holly-Kong glitz that never approaches the stylistic cohesiveness of, say, John Woo's Face/Off or the charisma of that film's propulsive star John Travolta.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
January 1, 2000
Given a budget that encourages their kinesthetic skills, the filmmakers tend to go on a bit, but it's mostly a kind of quick, glancing hipness that's being indulged here.
Top Critic
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
January 1, 2000
Special kudos to the mysterious Wachowski tag team, who have created a lurid, splashy nightmare for the end of the millennium.
Top Critic
Bob Fenster
Arizona Republic
January 1, 2000
The Matrix flings around enough imaginative ideas and digitized bodies to make it a definite check-out-this-one for all science-fiction fans.
Top Critic
January 1, 2000
Keanu Reeves makes a lean, strikingly beautiful tabula rasa hero, twisting out of the way of bullets that elongate like silver beads of mercury, and he's partnered by the equally hard, blank, and androgynously gorgeous Carrie-Anne Moss.
Top Critic
Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
January 1, 2000
It may bore you to death or blow your mind -- and it's long and convoluted enough to do both -- but it holds nothing back!
Top Critic
Sean Means
Film.com
January 1, 2000
The Matrix serves up so much visual wizardry and thought-provoking ideas that even the inevitable Silver touch -- a finale with more bullets than the opening of Saving Private Ryan -- can't destroy the magic.
Top Critic
Bob Graham
San Francisco Chronicle
January 1, 2000
It's astonishing that so much money, talent, technical expertise and visual imagination can be put in the service of something so stupid.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Top Critic
Dennis Lim
Village Voice
January 1, 2000
Ultimately, The Matrix settles for technically dazzling comic-book shtick. Some might count this as a good thing, but I'm not a fan of the Wachowskis' more-is-more aesthetic.
Top Critic
John Anderson
Newsday
January 1, 2000
The Matrix is really about filmmaking style rather than context.