The Matrix Reloaded

My Favorite Scene: The Matrix Reloaded (2003) – “Freeway Frenzy”


Trinity, Carrie Ann Moss, The Matrix Reloaded
When The Matrix hit it was an unknown quantity that quickly became a word-of-mouth sensation that managed to, by the end of the year, sway many jaded Phantom Menace fans to its universe and the promise of more to come.  I saw Reloaded at a midnight screening and the sheer amount of black leather in that audience could have upholstered Guam.  They walked in super pumped, borderline riotous.  They walked out  arguing, some defending the film some already off the bandwagon.

Reloaded is a divisive film and that’s not without cause.  Whereas the psychobabble in the first Matrix was cool, the psychobabble in Reloaded was some of the densest dialogue ever spoken by man.  In particular the scene between Neo and The Architect ( awesomely lampooned below by Will Ferrell at the MTV Movie Awards that year).

I like Reloaded overall (Revolutions we’ll get to next week), but it’s not so much a film – complete and polished – as it is a series of set pieces, some of which are insanely cool.  The Burly Brawl when it happened was incredible but time hasn’t been kind to it and it looks painfully dated today. 

The Matrix Reloaded

The fight at the Chateau is incredible and it was a toss-up between that and this extended highway madness.  I hope these two videos cover as much of it as possible.  From my mind it’s one continuous scene from when Morpheus and Trinity hit the street in the car until he kills the Ghosts (so underused).  The Matrix Reloaded, Morpheus, Laurence Fishburne

What people might not know is that in order to film this, they actually build over a mile of freeway and overpasses out in the desert to choreograph this madness.  Below is a picture from the air of how massive that set was.  Enjoy my favorite scene from Matrix 2 and we’ll be back here to, brace yourselves, handle Revolutions, next week.
The Matrix Reloaded

14 thoughts on “My Favorite Scene: The Matrix Reloaded (2003) – “Freeway Frenzy””

  1. That’s the thing… before Matrix Reloaded came out, the W’s had the total goodwill of the public. Everyone was ready to go nuts. And the W’s came close to delivering, in the sense that the unfolding story is really good, all the plot elements are in place, and the action set pieces (like the one you posted) are unbelievably awesome.
    Yet somehow the movie still managed to be extremely disappointing. I know a guy who thinks it’s because the first Matrix is like a rorschach ink blot test, but the second two are actually trying to answer questions.
    I would simply say that the Zion scenes are too talky, and the rave scene… not what I was expecting. The second half of the film really picks up, and the fact that the Twins are not in it all that much adds to their mystique, like Boba Fett in Empire.
    But I know some really smart people who did not know what the Architect was talking about, who thought it was gobbledygook and did not even bother trying to figure it out. In fact, it made them lose interest in the entire trilogy right then and there. When the payoff for your entire movie is incomprehensible, that’s a problem.
    The Matrix sequels do not prove that the W’s are are one hit wonders, or victims of their own success. Their subsequent work (Speed Racer, Cloud Atlas) proves they can do other things, that they are not stuck in Matrix Retread Land. I happen to think that Speed Racer and Cloud Atlas are inspired works whose time will come, and that history will judge the W’s kindly. But that’s just me.

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    1. I heart ya man, but you are not moving me to Cloud Atlas lol. Reloaded went to Zion to die. It’s like War of the Worlds when the film goes down into Tim Robbins basement and dies there. That entire Zion sequence which should have been amazing; seeing this last city of the humans, kills the film. It stops dead any momentum and the scenes in it are silly, tedious and just dumb. The rave kills Morpheus as a mysterious badass. When you talk about combining the two films, the first thing I’d do is cut 80% of Zion in Reloaded. The architect is hilarious. I love Ferrell’s impression because it’s not that far off lol.. It takes EXTREME concentration to get what he really means. Concordantly most people don’t. Ergo the anomaly that is the film’s climax vis a vis the choice of the One is negated.

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      1. It was a miscalculation. The W’s thought people would be going to see the movie multiple times to figure it all out, and that it would be fodder for water cooler conversation. And if Reloaded had been as cool as the first one, they probably would have been right. I think they were trying to do something different by making the first half of Reloaded mostly dialogue, and the second half one enormous action sequence (which it pretty much is). They have my extreme admiration for sticking their necks out, but when Neo and the Zion bigwig were leaning on that railing, and Neo asked what the point of that long-winded speech was, and the guy responded, “There is no point, I’m just talking,” the entire movie theater shifted uncomfortably in their seats.
        It is a measure of my extreme love for the W’s other work (both before and after) that I still hold them in such high regard. I’m telling you, they’re the real deal, and watching the car chase sequence in Reloaded shows what masters they are. If the W’s had not written Reloaded themselves, people would have been marveling at how they elevated the material with their wizardry. If you skip through your blu ray and just watch the awesome parts (of which there are many) it’s an experience comparable to The Animatrix.
        Jupiter Ascending and Sense8 are just around the corner. Long live the siblings, and if there is a higher power keep making lots of money available to them so that they can continue to instruct the rest of Hollywood in originality, vision, courage, and genuine heart.

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      2. It was a miscalculation. The W’s thought people would be going to see the movie multiple times to figure it all out, and that it would be fodder for water cooler conversation. And if Reloaded had been as cool as the first one, they probably would have been right. I think they were trying to do something different by making the first half of Reloaded mostly dialogue, and the second half one enormous action sequence (which it pretty much is). They have my extreme admiration for sticking their necks out, but when Neo and the Zion bigwig were leaning on that railing, and Neo asked what the point of that long-winded speech was, and the guy responded, “There is no point, I’m just talking,” the entire movie theater shifted uncomfortably in their seats.
        It is a measure of my extreme love for the W’s other work (both before and after) that I still hold them in such high regard. I’m telling you, they’re the real deal, and watching the car chase sequence in Reloaded shows what masters they are. If the W’s had not written Reloaded themselves, people would have been marveling at how they elevated the material with their wizardry. If you skip through your blu ray and just watch the awesome parts (of which there are many) it’s an experience comparable to The Animatrix.
        Jupiter Ascending and Sense8 are just around the corner. Long live the siblings, and if there is a higher power please keep making lots of money available to them so they can continue to school the rest of Hollywood in originality, vision, courage, and genuine heart.

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  2. This was the highlight of Matrix Reloaded for me, the freeway chase is amazing. I still prefer the original film, but Reloaded was still good, but I don’t think the story ‘t really hold together that well.

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    1. Totally agree. Reloaded gets lumped with Revolutions and its nowhere near that messed up. It has freaking awesome scenes, but the middle section drags so much that the film loses momentum. The chase is just astounding though. In the box set there’s a near feature-length doc on just making the chase.

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    1. Oh it’s insane. You have to go to youtube and see if you can find the making of the freeway scene and they just flat out built a section of freeway a mile or two long in the desert. I don’t know how else they could have shot that much traffic without going wholly CGI and in 2003 that wasn’t an option. And I’m glad it wasn’t, because I always have felt Reloaded gets too much crap, but Reveolutions can never get enough…..

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