The Matrix trilogy just celebrated its 21st birthday and Netflix decided to get all of its subscribers a little gift to honor the occasion. As of right now, the entire sci-fi trilogy is now available to watch on the streaming service. So for those looking to kill some time, and most of us are, why not revisit one of the most important sci-fi movies ever made? And then maybe give the sequels another try.
On March 31, 1999, Warner Bros. released The Matrix in theaters on unsuspecting audiences who, by and large, had absolutely no idea what was about to hit them. Courtesy of directors Lana Wachowski and Lilly Wachowski, with a cast led by Keanu Reeves, one of the most inventive, game-changing and all-around beloved movies in the history of science fiction was unleashed upon the world. Netflix, taking to Twitter, commemorated the birthday by revealing that the trilogy was coming to its streaming platform starting today.
"The Matrix was released 21 years ago today! and at midnight tonight, The Matrix Trilogy will be available on Netflix US."
The Matrix centers on a computer hacker named Neo (Keanu Reeves) who encounters a beautiful stranger (Carrie-Ann Moss). She leads him to a seedy underworld where he learns the shocking truth that life as we all know it is merely an elaborate deception crafted by an evil, highly-advanced form of cyber-intelligence. Neo teams up with a legendary rebel warrior named Morpheus (Lawrence Fishburne) in the battle to destroy the illusion that has enslaved humanity.
The movie proved to be a massive critical and commercial hit, grossing $465 million at the worldwide box office. The Wachowskis began work on two sequels that became The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions. Both were released in 2003. The hype was huge for Reloaded, which earned a truly impressive $738 million. Unfortunately, it wasn't able to recapture that same magic and Revolutions similarly couldn't match the original, but it still brought in $427 million. Over the years, the sequels have found their defenders, though the general consensus is that neither of the subsequent entries in the trilogy was on the same level of the classic that kicked this franchise off.
Currently, Warner Bros. and Lana Wachowski are hard at work on The Matrix 4, which had been filming before the production was temporarily shut down, given what's going on in the world right now. Both Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss are returning. Plot details are mostly being kept under wraps at the moment, but it's expected that a young Morpheus will be involved, so we could be jumping around the timeline a bit. At present, the movie is set to arrive on May 21, 2021, but that release date could be delayed, depending on how long the shutdown lasts. While we wait for Neo's next adventure, you can stream The Matrix trilogy right now via the Netflix streaming service.