The Morpheus Proposal
When we first meet her, the character Trinity is in a room numbered 303.Throughout the film, "The Matrix"
there is a delightful motif of numbers. Alittle later, we meet the character "Neo" who, we are told is "the one."Obviously, Neo is an anagram of "one." We meet him for the first time in hisroom, 101. Numbers play a key role in a society in which people are not merely cogs ina wheel, but a "human resource" in the most barbaric sense of the term.Certain key characters are identified with numbers, Trinity - three, Neo - one, Cipher - zero."Let me give you a piece of advice: be honest. He knows more than you canimagine," says Trinity at a critical juncture in the film. As with much of theother advice throughout the film, this advice proves to be excellent. Trinitygives Neo this advice as they stand together outside a door, behind which is the man Neo has come tomeet. Neo enters the room. Standing against the windows opposite the door is a tall, bald, black man in a longleather coat. After introducing himself as Morpheus, he says, "I imagine that right now you're feeling a bit like Alice…tumbling down the rabbit hole? I can see it in your eyes. You have the look of a manwho accepts what he sees because he's expecting to wake up. Ironically, this is not far from the truth."There is further irony in the fact that in Ovid's
, the character Morpheus was the deityresponsible for sleep, dreams, and the forms that dreamers see. The Morpheus of "The Matrix" isresponsible for helping dreamers wake up and see the forms of reality.Morpheus continues, "Let me tell you why you're here. You're here because you know something. Whatyou know you can't explain. But you feel it. You've felt it your entire life. That there's something wrongwith the world. You don't know what it is, but it's there. Like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad.It is this feeling that has brought you to me. Do you know what I'm talking about?"With a voice full of uncertainty, Neo asks, "The Matrix?""Do you want to know what it is?" Morpheus inquires very deliberately.At a nod from Neo, Morpheus continues, "The matrix is everywhere. It is all around us. Even now, inthis very room. You can see it when you look out your window or when you turn on your television.
1"The Matrix" is a film starring Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving and JoePantoliano, written and directed by Andy Wachowski and Larry Wachowski, executive producers Barrie Osborne,Andrew Mason, Andy Wachowski, Larry Wachowski, Erwin Stoff, and Bruce Berman. It is a Silver Pictures production produced by Joel Silver and presented by Warner Brothers in association with Village Roadshow Pictures - Groucho IIFilm Partnership. More information on The Matrix film trilogy can be found athttp://www.whatisthematrix.com/ The
soundtrack album features songs by Ramstein, Rage Against the Machine, Deftones, Prodigy, Rob Zombie, and MarilynManson. The program content, artwork, and photography is copyright © 1999 Warner Brothers. The use of quotes fromthe film dialog in this essay is fair use for the purpose of film review and film analysis.