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The Matrix and the Hero's Journey


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Fotso 1 Andre Michel Fotso ART2010 Prof. Farrell 30 June 2011

A Blender of Ideas In 1999, the year it came out, the movie “The Matrix” directed by the Wachovski brothers was considered by many as one of the best action movies in the film industry in decades. It was understandable after the success it had at the box office, and its success among viewers, which was not only local but global also. The structure of the journey of the hero, Neo, is nothing new. In fact, it starts and it ends like all the other journeys that preceded it, with the advantage of being rich in thought-provoking themes in comparison to the other movies of the genre. In order to help in the development of those themes, the Wachovski brothers use a lot of allusions, references from religions, myths, philosophy, literature, without changing the pattern of their hero’s journey which is clearly the same as the one represented in Joseph Campbell’s hero’s journey. Using the latter, it would possible to understand the use of certain figures of imagery, camera movements, and other tools by the Washovski brothers in the making of this film. 1- Departure Just like any other hero’s journey, the story of the matrix starts with the departure, which is comprised of five steps: a) The call to adventure b) Refusal of the Call

Fotso 2 c) Supernatural Aid d) The Crossing of the first threshold e) The Belly of the Whale During this first stage of the journey, the hero has to separate from the world he knows, and in the movie “The Matrix” there are lots of symbols, motifs with connections to sleep, dreams, reality and choice. a) The call to adventure “The call to adventure is the point in a person's life when they are first given notice that everything is going to change, whether they know it or not.” (Heros) Right before Thomas Anderson (at that point Neo), the protagonist is seen for the first time, the

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