Keanu Reeves and company have reunited to rage against the machines in The Matrix Reloaded, the highly anticipated sequel to the 1999 sci-fi blockbuster that redefined the genre. In this installment, due in theaters May 15, the machines have amassed a giant army to destroy Zion, the last real city of mankind, and squash the human resistance once and for all. The second chapter of the Matrix trilogy promises to be one of the biggest action-fests of all time. Here are a few non-spoiler highlights of what audiences can expect:
Insane fight sequences that push the envelope of special effects technology. In an epic battle between Neo (Keanu Reeves) and one hundred Agent Smiths (Hugo Weaving), all of the agents have been rendered by computer. But instead of the cartoonish humans you might expect from a Pixar movie, the Smiths have been rendered in unnerving photorealism. Why hire a hundred stand-ins when a computer can crank out as many as you need?
Upgraded villains.Reloaded introduces a sinister new "upgrade" to its roster of bad guys: a pair of pale, dreadlocked agents known as the Twins will terrorize the resistance with their vicious relentlessness, the ability to phase, and the use of straightrazors as weapons.
New characters. Co-creators Andy and Larry Wachowski promise that the world of The Matrix will be vastly expanded, which presents the opportunity for a whole lot of new characters. Among them will be Monica Bellucci dolled-up as mega-babe Persephone.
Wicked fashion and mad style. With everyone dressed up like S&M goth-monks, The Matrix continues to exude a strong sense of style. Coupled with the washed out colors of the background, the movie definitely has its own signature look and feel.
An annoying cliffhanger ending. The conclusion of The Matrix Reloaded is considered such a major cliffhanger that Warner Bros. has decided to release the trilogy's conclusion, Matrix Revolutions, in only six months, rather than make everyone wait a whole year or more. (Yeah, yeah, I'm sure their decision was financial, but at least they acknowledged how pissed off everyone would be if they had to wait for any unreasonable length of time.)
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