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Matrix Trans

“The refrain is easy: ‘Did you know The Matrix is an allegory for transition?’ which is thrown out as though it’s self-explanatory. To do the same for Resurrections would lead to the exact kind of literalized criticism trans film writers have ostensibly rallied against for years now. Andrea Long Chu already wrote the essay decrying the rigid application of trans thought onto the original film, and there is a part of me that wants to echo her nihilism. The Matrix does not have to be one thing so cleanly, and I think Lana Wachowski would agree. We as trans people don’t have to see ourselves on-screen to feel seen; we can live in the corners as we always have, hidden in platitudes about ‘becoming.’ The script for Resurrections shatters easy red-blue dichotomies with reckless abandon (the villain’s eyes may glow red, a rebel’s hair might shine blue) and transforms the Merovingian, a villain from Reloaded, into a babbling idiot spouting on about the inherent inferiority of sequels. This is a series so informed by the capital-T Trans Experience that it cannot help, by nature of its fabled form, but become allegory… Some early reviews suggested that the new film was primarily offering a metaphor for the loss of artistic freedom and the death of originality in the Hollywood blockbuster, as though it was a sly satire built on easy targets and jokes that winked to the audience .However, we’re watching Neo kill himself. Even he cannot escape the central contradiction that subsumes contemporary trans thought: aesthetic beauty obscuring visceral pain.”

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