Studying The Matrix (paperback) – Anna Dawson

£8.99   112pp   ISBN: 978-1-903663-82-0   2008

Following the release of the sequels to the surprise 1999 hit, The Matrix, producer Joel Silver declared 2003 ‘the Year of The Matrix’. Interest in all the films remains high and the original film is an ideal case study in science fiction cinema. Science fiction fans are absorbed in the revolutionary special effects and the convincingly depicted dystopia narrative; action movie buffs relish the conjunction of Hong Kong martial arts techniques with mainstream Hollywood aesthetics; and intellectuals immerse themselves in the film’s explicit and deliberate evocation of Baudrillard and higher mathematics.

Studying The Matrix considers the diverse influences behind the film – be it cinematic, philosophical, literary or comic book – together with its iconographic use of costumes, ground-breaking special effects and its stars, alongside its very particular industrial and ideological background, all in the context of the key concepts of Media Studies:

  • Media Language – the narrative structure of the film, its iconography and generic hybridity
  • Audiences and Institutions – The Matrix and its sequels as a seminal product of contemporary Hollywood
  • Representation – the names, roles and actions of every major character discussed.

Anna Dawson is a media education specialist, film journalist and Lecturer in Cinema Studies at Nottingham Trent University.


“Anna Dawson feels that The Matrix is far more substantial than it first looks, and her enthusiasm for the film… is not only valuable, but ultimately infectious.” Times Educational Supplement


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