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The Matrix Revolutions
(2003)
Album Cover Art
2003 Maverick
2014 La-La Land
Album 2 Cover Art
Composed, Conducted, and Produced by:

Orchestrated by:
Don Davis
Erik Lundborg
Conrad Pope

Additional Music by:
Juno Reactor
Labels Icon
LABELS & RELEASE DATES
Maverick Records
(November 4th, 2003)

La-La Land Records
(February 25th, 2014)
Availability Icon
ALBUM AVAILABILITY
The 2003 Maverick album is a regular U.S. release. The expanded 2014 La-La Land Records set is limited to 3,000 copies and available primarily through soundtrack specialty outlets for an initial price of $30.
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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... if you were captivated by Don Davis' maturing orchestral and choral themes for The Matrix Reloaded and wish to hear the progression of those ideas towards a victorious finale of religious proportions.

Avoid it... if you cannot tolerate the unsettling battle between satisfying harmony and challenging dissonance that Davis utilizes to very nearly the end of the trilogy.
Review Icon
EDITORIAL REVIEW
FILMTRACKS TRAFFIC RANK: #62
WRITTEN 8/30/03, REVISED 4/13/14
Davis
Davis
The Matrix Revolutions: (Don Davis) One of the most storied series of fantasy films came to an abrupt end in 2003, with both The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions dazzling audiences in the same year. The establishment of humanity's battle against the machines that rule the future Earth in the prior two films reaches its predetermined destiny in The Matrix Revolutions, the romantic tragedy of love and civilization lost countered by a fulfillment of fate that doesn't necessarily end this epic battle, but at least earns humanity a reprieve. Once again on display are concepts and techniques in visual effects that offended conservative groups while thrilling franchise faithful, and, unfortunately, Warner Brothers' choice of releasing both films in the same year diminished either sequels' chances of earning a wide range of technical awards. No fantasy franchise concept in the decade since has come close to provoking as much thought. While the music for the three films in the franchise was never as well conceived in detail and arrangement as Howard Shore's concurrent The Lord of the Rings scores, composer Don Davis did consider the three films to be an ongoing symphony of several developing movements. Continuing his collaboration with directors Andy and Larry Wachowski, Davis' involvement with The Matrix Revolutions brought about a momentous and epic conclusion to the trilogy. "It made perfect sense to me to infuse some kind of individual personalities to Reloaded and Revolutions," Davis later stated. "It wasn't a matter of improving on what I did in The Matrix, it was a matter of developing the ideas that we're established in the first movie. Even though it's not what you can call a fanatic score, there is a fanatic continuity." The music for The Matrix was an edgy, disturbed combination of razor sharp orchestral suspense and atmospheric, electronic ambiguity. Its effectiveness was measured by its ability to lure the audience into an uncertain world of distorted reality, and it thus was equally disturbing as a listening experience on album.

The music for The Matrix Reloaded was arguably intended to be the most stylish and contemporary of the three scores, adding considerable influence from Juno Reactor and Rob Dougan to Davis' equation. At the same time, the second installment began to introduce a sense of satisfying orchestral harmony for the resolution in the third film score, including several majestic choral cues for its higher impact scenes. For The Matrix Revolutions, the script demanded an even more powerful orchestral presence for the anticipated movement towards a fantastic, lengthy battle sequence at the end of the story. With the war against the machines rising to the surface of the charred Earth and culminating in Neo's final, spectacular battle with the them, Davis' orchestra and chorus is busy matching the dissonant echoes of the past with the finale's need for monumental order and tonality. Davis recorded the 110-minute long score in August 2003 with a 99-piece orchestra and 80-member choir at the Newman Scoring Stage at 20th Century Fox in Los Angeles, stirring up great anticipation among franchise fans for his final act. The score's greater length was required due to the extensive, epic fight sequences littered throughout the film (utilizing score instead of songs or non-Davis instrumental material), and thus, only one source song is employed in the picture. This is in contrast to the previous two films, which featured a heavy dose of 1990's electronica in the pictures and on their albums. Seemingly fewer collaborations with electronica artists existed with Davis in The Matrix Revolutions, with Juno Reactor's Ben Watkins only contributing to a few cues for the project. The collaboration of Davis, Watkins, and Dougan for the previous 2003 installment was certainly a success on album, the 2-CD set selling over 500,000 units and achieving Gold status. Davis himself praised the approach of combining the score and songs onto one album, stating, "As a consumer, I always feel a little bit slighted if I get a soundtrack CD that's mostly songs or only score music. This soundtrack is a real effort to change the paradigm of what's being offered to consumers in film music." Undoubtedly, the move was a very profitable one for Davis and increased exposure for his work as well.

With the shades of Dougan's "Clubbed to Death" now gone from the series, Watkins' remaining contributions to The Matrix Revolutions are restrained to collaborations with Davis, and moreso than before, Davis' influence leads Watkins' rather than the other way around. Both collaborative cues, "The Trainman Cometh" and "Tetsujin," offer Davis' score with minimal integration of synthetic instrumentation. The notable use of the Seraph Kodo drums in the latter cue finally yields to straight, rocking electronica rhythms in its last moments. It should be noted that the collaboration between Davis and Juno Reactor seems better balanced here, with nothing as far reaching as "Burly Brawl" from The Matrix Reloaded breaking Davis' established tones and pace of development. The one clearly out of place and unfortunate cut in the project is "In My Head," Pale 3's much heavier electronica contribution outside of Davis' influence. With less song material to be heard in The Matrix Revolutions, Davis' score is finally the central source of attention. Interestingly, the composer considered this third score to be a natural end of the road from a procedural standpoint early in the process, saying, "On the first Matrix they wanted me to be as creative as I could be, doing something absolutely new, different, big and huge and all this kind of stuff. Then Reloaded came along and it has to be newer, more different, bigger. I would think that by the time Revolutions is over I'll have pretty much reached the boundary of what I could do with this." That boundary exists on the highest level of harmonic, tonal development while still inserting just enough uneasy dissonance as to remind the viewer of the troubling concept at the root of the trilogy's story. For much of The Matrix Revolutions, Davis provides lush, romantically inclined orchestral and choral statements with just a tinge of rambling, atonal accompaniment. Even in the score's highlight battle cue, "Neodammerung," Davis brilliantly uses tonal chants and large statements of the film's three dominant themes led by a consistently rotating, off-key section of the orchestra in the background, one often performing a grandiose version of the remarkably effective, accelerating machine theme.

Davis refers often to the technique of the alternating chords of the series' primary motif to accomplish a background effect of continuity. The dual-chord motif wavering between trumpets and horns, a deceptively simple but memorable musical identity for the trilogy, is introduced (in customary fashion) in the first cue of the score and proceeds to add its flexible sense of warped reality to several cues throughout the score. Interestingly, this theme becomes less apparent as the score becomes more pleasant, only hinting softly at its own ghost on woodwinds in the middle of "Spirit of the Universe." The directors asked Davis to remove the motif from the very end of "For Neo" as to not suggest a continuation of the story. The crashing theme for the machines, striking the same note in an increasingly rapid pattern, is applied mostly to the sentinels in The Matrix Revolutions, culminating in "Niobe's Run" and offering a considerable amount of ruckus for chase cues that herald back to the truly disturbing moments of the original trilogy score. The continuously growing love theme for Neo and Trinity is freed from the awkward bonds that it experienced in The Matrix Reloaded, providing the first true sense of compassion (in a totally open, undivided performance) in the trilogy. This love theme balances the non-stop action from this and the previous score with fantastic performances on cello, horn, and clarinet in "The Road to Sourceville" and "Trinity Definitely." The hero theme for Neo himself doesn't alone experience the same rush of enthusiasm in its complete form in this score, instead merging with the love theme to better represent the character's fate. Other overarching stylistic choices that Davis made early in the trilogy receive appropriately dying representations in The Matrix Revolutions. The swirling and sometimes frenetic rhythmic movements representing the actions of Morpheus' crew throughout the first score and, to a lesser degree, in the second have been slowed to a crawl by the end of this one. The broad, rumbling percussion motif that accompanies the title theme at the outset of each film is slowly disassembled in the late minutes of "Spirit of the Universe." This deconstruction is a continuation of Davis' smart structural decisions in the music of this franchise, and they will certainly be a highlight of The Matrix Revolutions for its collectors.



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VIEWER RATINGS
8,603 TOTAL VOTES
Average: 3.94 Stars
***** 3,542 5 Stars
**** 2,503 4 Stars
*** 1,547 3 Stars
** 601 2 Stars
* 410 1 Stars
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COMMENTS
279 TOTAL COMMENTS
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The Matrix Revolutions score Analyzed
Ed Chang - February 17, 2016, at 5:54 p.m.
1 comment  (270 views)
Personal Opinion of this Score
Mitchell Hanson - September 30, 2009, at 4:02 p.m.
1 comment  (1398 views)
Brass Section (Hollywood Studio Symphony)
N.R.Q. - July 13, 2007, at 8:26 a.m.
1 comment  (1732 views)
Complete Scores?
Stuart Shepherd - May 14, 2007, at 7:15 a.m.
1 comment  (1661 views)
The Complete Score Rocks   Expand >>
Pudgy - October 31, 2006, at 2:46 p.m.
6 comments  (5389 views)
Newest: June 25, 2009, at 6:44 p.m. by
Parker1
Choir
N.R.Q. - July 9, 2006, at 12:09 p.m.
1 comment  (1442 views)
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Track Listings Icon
TRACK LISTINGS AND AUDIO
Audio Samples   ▼
2003 Maverick Album Tracks   ▼Total Time: 63:24
• 1. Logos/Main Title (1:21)
• 2. The Trainman Cometh - composed by Juno Reactor and Don Davis (2:43)
• 3. Tetsujin - composed by Juno Reactor and Don Davis (3:21)
• 4. In My Head - composed by Pale 3 (3:46)
• 5. The Road to Sourceville (1:25)
• 6. Men in Metal (2:18)
• 7. Niobe's Run (2:48)
• 8. Woman Can Drive (2:41)
• 9. Moribund Mifune (3:47)
• 10. Kidfried (4:49)
• 11. Saw Bitch Workhorse (3:59)
• 12. Trinity Definitely (4:15)
• 13. Neodammerung (5:59)
• 14. "Why, Mr Anderson?" (6:10)
• 15. Spirit of the Universe (4:51)
• 16. Navras - composed by Juno Reactor and Don Davis (9:08)
2014 La-La Land Album Tracks   ▼Total Time: 128:38

Notes Icon
NOTES AND QUOTES
The 2003 album's insert includes extensive credits and lyrics to "Neodammerung," but no extra information about the score or film. The 2014 La-La Land set's insert contains extensive notation about both.
Copyright © 2003-2017, Filmtracks Publications. All rights reserved.
The reviews and other textual content contained on the filmtracks.com site may not be published, broadcast, rewritten
or redistributed without the prior written authority of Christian Clemmensen at Filmtracks Publications. All artwork and sound clips from The Matrix Revolutions are Copyright © 2003, 2014, Maverick Records, La-La Land Records and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 8/30/03 and last updated 4/13/14.
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