The chosen film for this project is The Matrix, which was directed by Andy And Lana Wachowski. It was released in 1999 and became a franchise to two following films. The Matrix provides the concept of different realities. It follows the main protagonist Neo into this neo reality, questioning all of his pre existing beliefs on this world. It questions the notion of reality and ‘what is real’, which gave personal creative sound scape visions of how this could be constructed. The film provides interesting locations in which ambience and sense of space in these different dimensions can be explored during production.
Sound Design Methods Used:
- Sound FX (Creating Modualr synth patches, and manipulating everyday sounds in Logic)
- Mixing in both Stereo and 5.1 Surround Sound
Scene 1 – EXT, The Matrix: The Debugging.
Neo is of the phone to Morpheus, they are arranging to meet. It is a wet, winter night; a car pulls up under the bridge where Neo is waiting. Trinity opens the door and invites him in. Neo enters and the car door shuts as the car pulls off.
Under the bridge the atmosphere is dull and grimy. The rain set a dull tone to the scene and Neo stands towards the end of the bridge awaiting company.
Trinity pulls up in a black car. She opens the door and tells Neo to enter. The front seat passenger pulls out a gun on him; Trinity explains it’s for their protection. The passenger tells him to take off his shirt. He feels overwhelmed by all the demands, the passenger tells the driver to stop the car, and she has no patience with Neo’s uncertainty. She tells him it’s either their way or the high way. Neo opens the car door and goes to get out.
Trinity looking disappointed asks him to stay and explains he’s been down that road before. He stays, and trinity begins to set up the debugging. She gets a machine, which is hooked up, to the cars power. Neo takes off his shirt and braces himself by sitting lower into his seat, revealing his stomach. Trinity with a little difficulty manages to debug Neo by zapping an agent bug out of his stomach. The bug is captured into a glass tube and thrown out of the window.
· Bridge – A large empty road, pouring with rain. Under the bridge the grimy walls all appear dark and gloomy. It is a wet, winters night; the rain pours heavily at the end of the bridge. Neo stands on the right hand side of the pavement awaiting company.
· Rain; echo of rain under the bridge
· Foots steps on wet concrete
· Car moving on the wet concrete
· Car door opening& shutting as the car pulls off
· Movement from all three characters
· Dialogue from all three characters
· Gun cocked by passenger
· Debugging machine being handled
· Bug sound as it wriggles around alive
Scene 2 – EXT, The Matrix: Blue Pill Red Pill.
Neo is sat with Morpheus in a dimly lit room. The room is cold and the wind can be heard through the fireplace. Neo is in new grounds as he is digesting the concept of everything he experienced in the car joinery here. He sits awkwardly, nervous about this experience. Neo and Morpheus sit opposite each other discussing the Matrix and how Neo can enter it. They are sat on two brown, old, leather seats with a small dark table between them.
Morpheus offers Neo two options. He speaks to Neo whilst wearing his glasses, covering his eyes. As he holds out his hands he offers Neo that he can either take the blue pill, which will take him back to his normal life and he will remember nothing, or he can take the red pill and find the true meaning of the Matrix. This is a heavy question. Neo reaches for the hand holding the red pill. Morpheus hesitates and reassures him that he is only offering the truth to Neo.
As thunder strikes Neo takes the red pill, swallows it, and washes it down with a glass of water. Morpheus then gets up and instructs Neo to follow him.
· The room – In the large dull-lit room, the rain and outside weather conditions can be heard. Neo and Morpheus sit discussing the reason for their meeting.
· Non-Diegetic Rain and wind; heard through the fireplace
· Non-Diegetic Rain; hitting the windows in the room
· Clothing sounds from Morpheus against the leather seat.
· Clothing sounds of Neo against the leather seat.
· Non-Diegetic Clock sound in the large room.
· Dialogue between Neo and Morpheus
· Sound of Neo picking up the red pill
· Sounds of him picking up the glass and placing it down
· Drinking and swallowing
· Movement from all three characters
· Footsteps of Morpheus on wooden flooring
Scene 3 Part 1 – EXT, The Matrix: Entering The Matrix.
Neo follows him into this Hi Fi - lab room, where he sits on what looks like a dental chair. This is the room where his Matrix initiation will take place. All sense of time and location are extracted from this space. The room is dull and lit by the electrical equipment. This room buzzes with electrical energy, which distracts Neo from what is about to happen.
Neo reaches to his reflection in a mirror, only to find, at his touch the mirror becomes a stretchy silver liquid. He realises the effects of the pill is kicking in and his reality is changing.
The liquid begins to crawl up Neo hands towards his face. He seems agitated as he fights the cold glistening liquid. Morpheus orders the other four characters (three in the room, one on the phone) to work on getting Neo successfully into the reality without him dying of shock. They use computers frantically as Neo is drowning in the silver liquid. They vigorously work on computer programmes coding Neo to the right destination. The coding makes robotic, inhuman sounds as the team direct him into this new reality.
They all succeed and Neo is overcome with the liquid into the new reality.
Scene 3 Part 2 – EXT, The Matrix: Power Plant.
· Neo entering the new reality
· Diegetic Silver stretchy liquid being touched as Neo places his finger on the mirror
· Dialogue from all five characters in the lab room.
· Computer sounds/ buzz/ hums
· Movement of three characters rushing in the room
· Morpheus picking up his phone& typing a number
· The silver liquid travelling up Neo arm towards his head, and into his mouth.
· Sound expressions as Neo feels like he is drowning
· Thick air in the room, stuffy.
· Footsteps of characters of wooden flooring.
Floating in a womb-red amnion. His body spasms, fighting against the thick gelatine. Metal tubes, surreal versions of hospital tubes, obscure his face. Other lines like IVs are connected to limbs and cover his genitals. He is struggling desperately now. Air bubbles into the Jell-O but does not break the surface. Pressing up, the surface distends, stretching like a red rubber cocoon. Unable to breathe, he fights wildly to stand, clawing at the thinning elastic shroud until it ruptures, a hole widening around his mouth as he sucks for air. Tearing himself free, he emerges from the cell.
He is bald and naked, his body slick with gelatine. Dizzy, nauseous, he waits for his vision to focus. He is standing in an oval capsule of clear alloy filled with red gelatine, the surface of which has solidified like curdled milk. The IVs in his arms are plugged into outlets that appear to be grafted to his flesh. He feels the weight of another cable and reaches to the back of his head where he finds an enormous coaxial plugged and locked into the base of his skull. He tries to pull it out but it would be easier to pull off a finger. To either side he sees other tube-shaped pods filled with red gelatine; beneath the wax-like surface, pale and motionless, he sees other human beings. Fanning out in a circle, there are more. All connected to a centre core, each capsule like a red, dimly glowing petal attached to a black metal stem.
Above him, level after, level, the stem rises seemingly forever. He moves to the foot of the capsule and looks out. The image assaults his mind. Towers of glowing petals spiral up to incomprehensible heights, disappearing down into a dim murk like an underwater abyss.
His sight is blurred and warped, exaggerating the intensity of the vision. The sound of the PLANT is like the sound of the ocean heard from inside the belly of Leviathan.
· Non-Diegetic and diegetic Fans
· Breathes and body expression sounds
· Breaking through the womb
· Standing in water/ jelly
· Pulling out pipes from mouth/throat
· Attempt to pull out pipe from back of head.
· Sounds of the thousand wombs around him
Scene 4 – EXT, The Matrix: The Decoding.
Morpheus takes Neo to a new loading programme where he can learn more about the Matrix. He needs to realise the ins and outs of the reality he has just woken up from. They walk through crowds of plugged citizens who are trapped mentally in the Matrix. Many of who Neo was next two in the womb power plant. They walk against the crowd as Morpheus points out different characters within the Matrix. Neo finds it hard to keep up, constantly bumping into the citizens.
Neo seems still overwhelmed, he is taking in everything Morpheus is saying but a woman in a silky red dress distracts him. She glares at him flirtatiously. Morpheus points out the distraction and asks Neo to look back at her.
Neo looks back only to find an agent point a gun towards his head. This is a lesson to show Neo how all the unplugged citizens are potential agents. If you are not unplugged you are a risk. Morpheus freezes time to explain to Neo the situation. They freeze next to a waterfall and the surrounding yard freezes. The citizens mid walk surround them.
Morpheus in the frozen silence informs Neo that they are danger and refers to Neo as ‘us’. He is now part of the team. He explains that the agents are powerful, they are the key to the matrix, but when people try to defeat them they have died. Neo begins to realise he is the chosen one for this battle. He slowly questions Morpheus. There is an empty, tense feeing in this scene as they focus on Neo’s teaching. Morpheus is guiding neo to the concept that he can beat these agents, with his help.
· Morpheus walking wearing leather jacket
· Hums of the Matrix whilst Morpheus points out plugged citizens
· Dialogue between characters
Scene 5 – EXT, The Matrix: The Dessert Of The Real.
Morpheus takes neo to a new location. He takes him to the ‘dessert’ the scorched land by humans and AI. They sit on the same two seats they sat on when Neo first met Morpheus and consumed the red pill. Morpheus sits casually holding a TV remote in front of the TV untouched by his surroundings. Neo stands to the right of Morpheus, uncomfortable to the new location.
Morpheus explains this is reality, where humans created artificial intelligence. This intelligence created a new race, which possibly killed all of existence and scorched the skies. He explains how humans relied on the sun as energy, which was then destroyed by this AI.
The dull dark clouds crackle, almost in an evil manner. This location is so inhuman Neo finds it hard to look up. A red fetus of Neo then appears, connected to an electrical power sourced from the back lower area of his skull. As he learns more he realises he has been living a lie since birth.
· Dialogue between characters
· Neo moving on gravel ground
· Matrix electrical live wire
Scene 6 – EXT, The Matrix: The Car Ride Through Reality.
Neo exits the doorway; he looks dazed from his Matrix initiation. He slowly comes to grips with everything. The rest of the characters follow as Morpheus tells them that himself, Trinity and Neo will return in an hour. Cypher walks around the back of the car and mysteriously drops a calling phone into the bin. The phone lands inside of a half full, metal bin.
The scene cuts to Neo staring out into the fake ‘outside everyday reality’. He looks outside the window nostalgically, remember his memories of when he lived there carefree. He chats to Trinity about his memories. The radio plays some unknown code of language as he accepts everything that once was, never existed. Morpheus drives, listening to their conversation. The dull outside passes by as a veil to the hoax of the Matrix. Trinity tells him about the oracle. He questions her experiences with the oracle but trinity hesitantly avoids a lot of them. She sits there patient for Neo’s awakening. Morpheus then tells they have arrived and gets out of the car. He tells Neo to follow.
The Car Ride Through Reality
· Footsteps on metal stairs
· Cyphers footsteps on concrete
· Phone being dropped onto rubbish
· Reverberation of this in metal bin
· Morphues and trinity leather jackets
· Neo’s movement in cloth blazers
· Dialogue between Trinity and Neo