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Kid's Story

Kid's story begins with crows flying through the sky, the view of falling, a body pitched over a wall, falling down and down, passing windows on various floors, as the ground and some railings rushes up. Just as the viewpoint is about to hit the pavement, it abruptly ends.

A teenage boy in bed, opens his eyes. It was the dream, again.

He gets up, goes to his computer and logs in. He's annoyed, and types out:

"Somebody tell me why it feels more real when I dream, then when I am awake?
How can I know if my senses are lying?"

This is a very profound statement core to the notion of full immersion VR. If all your senses, your direct brain inputs are fed by an artificial source, there may be no way to tell.

His typing was just in a blank screen, not a chatroom or such. It looks a little like the Linux program VI, or a jet black notepad. Thus he is stunned when out of nowhere, someone replies, and fills in the lines below his:

"There is some fiction in your truth,
and some truth in your fiction.

To know the truth, you must risk everything."

The presence types nothing else, and does not respond to his typed prompting. He does not go back to sleep that night.

In the morning, the teenager has his breakfast, collects his skateboard, and heads for school. Just another day. Ironically the school's name is "Clear view".

Inside, its class as normal. The teacher writes on the blackboard, whilst he scribbles unrelated notes down. It is a long, hot, boring class full of disinterested students.

Suddenly, a telephone rings. The teacher puts down his chalk and scans the class. The teen, identified by the teacher as Mr. Parker, struggles to get it out of his bag, and drops the cellphone on the floor. He picks it up, turns it off and profusely apologises. After a brief lecture, he slides the off phone into his bag again.

Seconds pass.

The phone goes off again. Its off, no power, yet its ringing. He answers it. A man's voice speaks out. "They know you know. They're coming for you now. Get out. Get out now."

Mr Parker looks over to the window and sees several big, black, government issue cars pull up. Men in suits, all looking nearly identical, stream out of them. His gaze is interrupted by his teacher who grabs the phone and states. "You are in serious trouble, Mr. Parker."

Parker bolts for the door, pushing the teacher out of the way. He leaps over desks, sending his fellow students flying, as he madly runs to get away. Not making the door, he clambers out of a skylight window instead, into the hallway.

The men in suits are there, five of them, and they are walking towards him calmly, their eyes on him, steady. He runs to his locker and grabs the skateboard, and the chase is on.

The men in suits move with inhuman speed, but the skateboard gives him an esge, weaving between them and ducking down side corridors. More and more agents come out of the woodwork, too many to count. He sees the same faces over and over again, but surely that is not possible?

A blockade is set, tables piled high across the corridor. His skateboard goes under, he leaps, runs over, and is down the other side, back on the board. The chase continues, higher and higher. Every exit is blocked, but there's still the roof. He scoots into a girl's bathroom and out the window, its too high to jump, but he can climb.

Agents are waiting for him as he makes it up to the roof, their guns drawn. One takes careful aim as he climbs over the railing. Knowing the gig is up, he leans back, outwards into space, and whispers "Neo, I believe."

With that, he pushes off, and his body falls. There are no crows, agents stand in their place. Everything else, exactly the same as the dream. He does not scream as the floors pass by, and the pavement with railing rushes up to meet him…

At his funeral, the adults talk quietly about how he believed reality was just a dream; for him, reality was always somewhere else, out there. One, his teacher, says. "Well, he's in another world now. Make no mistake about that."

As the closing scene, the kid wakes up in the real world, surrounded by Neo and Trinity. He made it.


Running time: 8:56

Written by the Wachowski brothers
Directed by Shinichiro Watanabe


Purchase This

The Animatrix

The Animatrix is a collection of nine short animations, a mix of CG and hand drawn animation, starting with this one, and moving through eight others, each with a unique point of view. Some are deeply philosophical , some wax poetic. All are filled with information on VR, on what it could and can quite easily be, beyond the matrix series itself.

Ironically, Flight of the Osiris is the odd one out, as it is the most plot-canon of the nine, and has the least to offer in philosophical or technical musings about VR. That said, the CG still gives us a great deal to muse over visually, but the others too, are well worth a look.

Review also links to all nine short films.

The Ultimate Matrix Collection

The 'Ultimate Matrix Collection' is actually rather less than ultimate, since it does not include the Matrix philosophy books, and other add-ons. However, what this bumper DVD collection does include, is all three films, and the Animatrix.

Other Links

Resource List: Everything Matrix

A resource list held on VWN, attempting to index everything we have, Matrix related. It continues to grow steadily over time

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