How ‘The Matrix’ Made Me Appreciate ‘Star Wars’

by Frank Martin

A long-awaited sequel to an old franchise is usually met with mixed emotions. A lot of fans are excited to revisit some of their favorite characters and stories, but these same fans are also apprehensive. And with good reason! Nostalgia is often challenged by something new. There’s always the chance that an additional story can taint the original by making the audience view it in a different light. Not surprisingly, the Star Wars sequels received a lot of hate for this very reason. Admittedly, I would consider myself among the fans who were less than enthused by the three main movies Disney produced. But a strange thing happened when viewing the new Matrix movie, The Matrix Ressurections, with my son: it made me appreciate those Star Wars movies for something other than what they were.

As a geek parent I consider it my duty to educate my children on the classics. And as geekdom grows, so does the ever-expanding library of things considered a classic. When I was growing up, the classics were things made before I was born. Now that I’m an adult, movies that came out when I was a child have been added to that list. Many of them my son has no knowledge about. He never questions me when I tell him they’re great, but there’s an added spark in his eye that comes when a title or story is already recognized.

This happened with the new Matrix. He had no idea what The Matrix was, and to prepare him for the new movie we sat down and watched the original trilogy. He enjoyed them, but probably enjoyed them more knowing that there was a new sequel coming that we can both experience for the first time together. Regardless, if The Matrix Resurrections is considered “good” or not is irrelevant on this subject because it allowed my son to feel connection to the originals, which would otherwise be considered dated.

And that is how we circle back to Star Wars. Many hardcore fans have strong opinions about the Disney additions to the franchise, but whether you enjoy the new movies or shows is not as important as the stories adding to the lore. Yes, we all want them to be good. But even if they are not, the fact that they exist allows a new generation of younger fans to experience something for the first time. And in doing so, gives them an interest to go back and experience the original stories with excited eyes even though those films and shows might be decades old.

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