The Wachowski Brothers, the writers and directors of the Matrix trilogy, have made it clear that patience is half of faith. This is a common spiritual realization. Or as Thomas Merton puts it: "The way of faith is necessarily obscure. We drive by night." Neo (Keanu Reeves) can certainly attest to that. He has tentatively tiptoed into his role as "the One" who can save Zion, the last human stronghold in a world dominated by machines. But along the way, he has been tested and tested again, and so have the people and sympathetic programs he encounters. Being comfortable in the face of mystery is no easy assignment. Those who are called to accomplish something of great value must constantly make new choices to discover what is right for them and for their mission. And, of course, Neo is no stranger to doubt and distraction, those nefarious forces that sabotage faith and trust.
At the opening of The Matrix Revolutions, the third and final episode of this futuristic story, Neo lies comatose as the defenders of Zion prepare to fend off a full-throttle attack by the machines. Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) is deeply in love with Neo and will do anything to help him fulfill his mission. Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) still believes in him even though things are looking very bleak. It turns out that the Neo is trapped in a zone between the illusionary world of the Matrix and the real world; it looks like a subway station and is under the control of Trainman (Bruce Spence). While Neo tries in vain to escape, Trinity and Morpheus visit the Oracle (Mary Alice replacing the late Gloria Foster). They enter Club Hell and in the coat check area engage in a massive shootout with security forces protecting Merovingian (Lambert Wilson) and his consort Persephone (Monica Bellucci). Trinity demonstrates her single-mindedness in a tense encounter with this witty enemy and manages to get the upper hand.
As in the other two films, a crucial scene finds Neo visiting the Oracle. He asks her the questions that are foremost in his and our minds: "Where is this going?" and "Where does it end?" Of course, she isn't going to spell anything out for him. It's all about choices, she reminds him, and we can't see beyond our choices.
Neo retreats to seek guidance and emerges to announce that he needs to go to Machine City to contact the Source and end the war. Niobe (Jada Pinkett Smith) gives him her ship for this dangerous journey. Trinity refuses to be left behind, and they take off together, not knowing that Bane (Ian Bliss) is aboard and has been invaded by Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving), the rogue program that has learned to duplicate himself into an army of fighting machines.
Back in Zion, the valiant warriors led by Commander Lock (Harry Lennix) enter battle with the invading machine army and are astounded by the endless waves of Sentinels that swarm down upon them, destroying everything in sight. Civilian volunteers including Zee (Nona Gaye) and Kid (Clayton Watson) are forced to demonstrate super-human courage on the battlefield. Niobe's heroics piloting a hovercraft even impress Morpheus. After a battle with Bane that blinds him, Neo arrives in Machine City and makes a deal with the Source. The final fight with Smith, whom we now know recognize as Neo's shadow, takes place in a fierce storm with lightning and pelting rain.
The teaser ad for Matrix Revolutions reads: "Everything that has a beginning has an end." Faith is not faith unless it is tested and tried. Those who choose to walk this path must be comfortable in the face of mystery, firm in their resolve to see things through, and willing to take a leap of faith in the dark not a bad image to sum up what Neo must do to bring this story to an end.
The DVD extras, as you would expect, focus on how the film was put together. "Revolutions Recalibrated" is the behind-the-scenes featurette. Other shorts look at how they made the special effects, with one concentrating on the final showdown between Neo and Smith. A timeline helps you remember all the developments in the three Matrix films. There are also weblinks to the official site and an online game.