The original Matrix film and its initial sequels have had quite the impact on pop culture over the years. In fact, their influence even spread into politics, where right-wing political groups began using the terms “red pill” and “blue pill.” It appears that the new sequel The Matrix Resurrections is completely aware of this, and even co-writer Aleksander Hemon has claimed that the new film will reclaim the “red pill” term from the right.
This was revealed in an interview with The AV Club, in which co-writers Aleksander Hemon and David Mitchell discussed the film. The new sequel is something of a meta-sequel, and those elements include our actual cultural and political climate at the moment.
Here’s what Aleksander Hemon said specifically:
“Things like the Red Pill/Blue Pill trope or meme and how it was kidnapped by the right-wing,” Hemon explained. “The verb ‘to red pill’ and so on. So one thing we were mindful of is how to reclaim that trope. To renew the meaning of Red Pill/Blue Pill.”
As those who’ve seen The Matrix know, Keanu Reeves’ character Neo is given the choice between either taking a red pill or blue pill. This is a monumental moment in the film, and one which gives Neo his first real view of reality. As such, political groups have began using “red pill” as a term for breaking people out of the influence of the media or left-wing groups.
Here’s what co-writer David Mitchell had to add:
“I don’t see myself as a frontline fighter in the culture war, but you also want your work to mean something, to have an ethical edge,” said Mitchell, regarding the phrase. “One of the many reasons I’m proud of Resurrections is it does have that. What I’m trying to say is, I think the film has integrity, and perhaps that’s the source of the integrity.”
“I am infused with a need to confront some of the things that are taking place in this country,” but “we did not set out to get into arguments with right-wingers.”
The all-new sequel The Matrix Resurrections is now available in theaters as well as the streaming platform HBO Max.