MARCH 31, 1999
A groundbreaking feat of science fiction cinema, The Matrix helped shape a generation of films with its innovative special effects and cinematography.
Influenced by Japanese anime, martial arts, Hong Kong cinema, Plato, Baudrillard, and Lewis Carroll, the film features a neo-noir cyberpunk future and explores deep philosophical themes about the nature of reality and the self. Written and directed by the Wachowskis, The Matrix is set in a dystopian future where computers grow and harvest humans. Only a select group of humans are aware of this reality, and they devote their lives to fighting against the machines that have taken over Earth.
Special effects made The Matrix what it is, especially a technique called “bullet time” where multiple cameras shoot the same scene. Afterward, frames are taken from all the cameras and lined up consecutively to produce multiple viewpoints of the same action, creating detailed slow motion and frozen time effects. The Matrix has won four Academy Awards including Best Editing, Best Visual Effects, Best Sound, and Best Sound Effects.