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Film&Discussion – The Matrix

July 7, 2009

Is Agent Smith the villain or the savior of the world?

I was going to argue both sides and say it’s all perspective, but I wasn’t buying it. So I’m just going to go off on what I think.

Agent Smith is, obviously, the villain.

However, he may be a savior to people like Cypher, who was once in the Matrix, but was then freed by Morpheus. Cypher decided, after so many years, that he enjoyed the Matrix better than the real world, so he went to Smith to get back into the Matrix. Cypher might indeed think of Agent Smith as his savior, but that conception of a savior is diluted, because the salvation in question lacks a basic truthfulness to reality. If a savior twists the very form of reality and denies people the truth, then this savior doesn’t really live up to his title. What is he saving them from?

Smith can give what anyone wants, but not what they need.* The reality is: we really don’t know what we need, and our wants always seem to change. So, if this idea is true, then the thing we want the most may not be what we need. One can cite the obvious examples, such as meth being what a drug addict wants, but far from what he needs; or the friend who keeps getting back into a pointless relationship.

To be more direct: what if, at our wisest points in life, in our greatest moments, we’re still far from what we need? What if we live only to fail at ever seeing what we truly need? After all, we’re only human.

Agent Smith was created to keep those plugged into the Matrix from waking up to reality. Smith symbolizes the very thing that stands in our way of knowing truth. He could be a religious group, a scientific dogma, or he could even be the person you sleep with every night.

Who’s your Agent Smith?

*I know… Coldplay lyric.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Zach permalink*
    July 9, 2009 4:09 am

    I think Smith is at least a catalyst for salvation

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