Everything Everywhere All At Once Might Not Exist If Not For The Matrix

We still have a lot of 2022 left to go, but it feels like in the early going that A24's "Everything Everywhere All At Once" has a real shot at being the best-reviewed movie of the year, with audiences responding in kind. The film stars Michelle Yeoh, who is earning some of the best praise of her storied career, and was directed by Daniels, the filmmaking duo made up of Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert. And, wouldn't you know it, this acclaimed sci-fi flick might not exist were it not for one of the greatest sci-fi movies ever made — "The Matrix."

'We wanted to make our own version of it'

In speaking with IndieWire while promoting "Everything Everywhere All At Once," Daniels explained the importance of "The Matrix" and the influence it had on them, going so far as to say this movie was their response to the seminal 1999 sci-fi/action classic. Kwan speaking to that fact, said the following:

"This movie is 100 percent a response to 'The Matrix,' obviously. We wanted to make our version of it. It was wild to be like oh, 'We took so long that the Wachowskis beat us to it.'"

The joke there relates to "The Matrix Resurrections," which was released last year to a somewhat mixed response. The long-awaited fourth entry in the franchise certainly didn't tread on Daniels' turf, but did they feel that it lived up to their expectations? Kwan felt good about it, at the very least.

"I loved it. I know it's a mess, but there was enough in there for me to be really happy."

Scheinert was quietly less impressed saying, "I think there's one 'Matrix' movie. It's one of the best films ever made." Speaking further, the other half of the filmmaking duo explained that he isn't, generally speaking, a bit fan of big franchises in general.

"I'm not a fan of many series or trilogies. I love a sit-down experience that starts and finishes well. I don't need more 'Die Hard.' I have 'Die Hard.'"

The Matrix ripple effect

It is downright remarkable how, well over 20 years removed from its original release, "The Matrix" continues to influence very talented filmmakers and cinema in general. It truly was a watershed moment in movie history, the kind that only comes around once in a blue moon. There naturally were a number of cheap imitations in the years that followed but the film is so singular that imitation proved to be damn near impossible. Even the sequels themselves had an exceedingly difficult time living up to what had come before. Magic. Lightning in a bottle.

With that having been said, it's refreshing that we now have a generation of filmmakers that grew up being influenced by "The Matrix" and are making their own unique, stylish movies that are loving tributes to it, rather than a cheap attempt at a carbon copy. Because "The Matrix" exists, and because it was great, it inspired a couple of very talented directors to make a great new movie that we can all now enjoy, and there is something pretty neat about that.

"Everything Everywhere All At Once" is in theaters now.

Directed by Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, collectively known as Daniels, the film is a hilarious and big-hearted sci-fi action adventure about an exhausted Chinese American woman (Michelle Yeoh) who can't seem to finish her taxes.