|The Matrix Reloaded|
Andy and Larry Wachowski
Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, Jada Pinkett Smith, Monica Bellucci, Lambert Wilson, Harold Perrineau Jr.
|If eye-lectrifying computer-generated special effects were the sole basis for judging an action flick, "The Matrix Reloaded" would be an improvement over "The Matrix," its predecessor in revolutionary digital imagery. But since the latter's 1999 release, we've seen enough movies with gravity-defying, variable-speed martial-arts fights that ape those in "The Matrix." The novelty has worn off. "The Matrix Reloaded," the inflated second installment in a sci-fi trilogy from writing/directing brothers Andy and Larry Wachowski, continues the adventures of Neo, warrior/cyber-savior, in a reality where despotic machines rule over humans who mistakenly think they're living in the normal world. Most of humanity is captive and plugged into a virtual-reality existence. A free rebel faction, led by Neo (monotoned Keanu Reeves), his lover Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) and mentor Morpheus (scenery-scarfing Laurence Fishburne), battles the mean machines and deadly computer programs, such as replicating assassin Mr. Smith (Hugo Weaving). Despite a cool look, too much of the film is a logorrhea jam of expository dialogue and bogus profundity, plus tiring video-game-style combat.|