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The Matrix

A computer hacker learns from mysterious rebels about the true nature of his reality and his role in the war against its controllers.
October 2019
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Ticket Prices

$11 regular admission
$9 matinees (before 6pm)
$9 students/seniors/active military with valid ID
$8 MdFF Members
The Matrix

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Director: Lana & Lilly Wachowski

Starring: Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Laurence Fishburne, Hugo Weaving, and Joe Pantoliano


1999, USA, 136 minutes, Digital, R

Language: English

Distributor: Warner Bros. Classics

Throughout Fall 2019, Science and Film will explore the meanings and uses of science and technology in film through special screenings, guest lectures and and interactive discussions.

Program Notes

20 years ago, a wildly inventive science fiction film posited that reality is a vast simulation created by hyper-intelligent AI. The Matrix has gone on to become one of the most influential films of all time, and scientists and philosophers have been arguing the plausibility of its premise ever since. Join us for a screening and post-film discussion as our own science and philosophy experts debate the key questions raised by this groundbreaking film: What are the odds that we’re all characters living in a computer-generated dream world? How would we know and what should we do about it?

Expert Guests:

Dr. Michael Wolmetz, Program Manager for the Human and Machine Intelligence Program, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

Dr. Elanor Taylor, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Johns Hopkins University

Dr. Canay Özden-Schilling, Mellon Sawyer Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Anthropology, Johns Hopkins University

Dr. Hey-Kyoung Lee, Professor of Neuroscience, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

The film takes place in a universe run by computers using human beings as batteries for bio-electrical energy. This “people power” fuels the artificial intelligence known as The Matrix, which has created a virtual reality to make its inhabitants think they are living happy, creative, productive lives. But in reality, they are only providing the energy that keeps The Matrix going. There are, however, a few human beings – including Morpheus (Fishburne) and Trinity (Moss) — who have broken free from The Matrix and are searching to destroy it, recruiting Neo (Reeves) along the way.

Selected for inclusion on the National Film Registry

Winner of the Academy Awards for Film Editing, Sound, Visual Effects, and Sound Effects Editing

Critics' Praise

The Matrix still stands up as a fiercely exciting and discombobulating futurist drama, which pioneered breathtaking ‘bullet-time’ action sequences inspired by Asian martial arts.”
— Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

“A wildly cinematic futuristic thriller that is determined to overpower the imagination, The Matrix combines traditional science-fiction premises with spanking new visual technology in a way that almost defies description.”
— Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

“Bill Pope’s swooping, noir-inflected cinematography is wonderfully complemented by Owen Paterson’s inventive production design, a great soundtrack and the best fight choreography this side of Hong Kong. And even if this isn’t Blade Runner, it is very cool shit.”
— Manohla Dargis, L.A. Weekly

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The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Parkway is located at 5 W. North Avenue (at the intersection of North Avenue and Charles St.) in Baltimore's Station North Arts and Entertainment District
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