How To Watch All Of The Matrix Movies

With The Matrix Resurrections now available to stream, there’s never been a better time to plug in.

Keanu Reeves in 'The Matrix' (1999). Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures/HBO Max.

The red pill, or the blue pill? When The Matrix premiered in 1999, it posed a question that would echo throughout pop culture for the next two decades — and it made no bones about pointing to the right answer. The film portrayed Neo (Keanu Reeves) as a hero for going down the rabbit hole, and memorably ended with the song “Wake Up” by Rage Against the Machine. Its message was clear: Become aware of the repressive systems that regulate society, and you’ll be able to make change, to bend rules that once seemed unbreakable. (It was also, as was later confirmed, a powerful allegory for the trans experience.) In the subsequent two sequels, writer-directors Lana and Lilly Wachowski followed Neo on his quest to save humanity from the machines, to reawaken the Matrix’s population from its collective slumber.

Now, Lana Wachowski offers viewers the choice once again in The Matrix Resurrections, the fourth installment in the franchise. In part, the new film was designed to take back the “red pill” metaphor, which has been co-opted by the radical right in recent years. In an interview with The A.V. Club, Matrix Resurrections co-writer Aleksander Hemon teased that “one thing we were mindful of is how to reclaim that trope. To renew the meaning of Red Pill/Blue Pill.”

Ready to dive into the Matrix’s world once again? Below, a quick, (mostly) spoiler-free overview of the original trilogy, as well as how to stream all four Matrix films, including The Matrix Resurrections.

The Matrix (1999)


This is the movie that started it all. Set in a dystopian future, The Matrix follows Neo, a computer hacker who is shown the truth about his simulated reality. He joins a group of rebels set on freeing mankind from the Matrix, which was designed by intelligent machines in order to enslave humans and harvest their bodily energy. The first movie ends with a slight cliffhanger, leaving much to be explored later in the franchise.

Stream The Matrix on HBO Max and Hulu. Rent The Matrix on Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, or Apple TV.

The Matrix Reloaded (2003)


Six months after the events of the first film, The Matrix Reloaded finds Neo and the rebels once again fighting Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving), who’s bent on preventing humans from escaping the simulated reality — and angling to leave it himself. The sequel provides more insight into how the Matrix works, and further details on what Neo’s role as “The One” will entail. Also important to The Matrix Reloaded is Neo and Trinity’s (Carrie-Anne Moss) evolving romantic relationship.

Stream The Matrix Reloaded on HBO Max and Hulu. Rent The Matrix Reloaded on Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, or Apple TV.

The Matrix Revolutions (2003)


The Matrix Revolutions picks up immediately where the second film leaves off, with the human city of Zion in danger and Neo struggling to fulfill his destiny. Meanwhile, as Agent Smith’s powers grow stronger, so do his plans to take over the Matrix. The rebels find themselves fighting a battle on two fronts — both in the Matrix, and in Zion — with the fate of the human race hanging in the balance.

Stream The Matrix Reloaded on HBO Max and Hulu. Rent The Matrix Reloaded on Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, or Apple TV.

The Matrix Resurrections (2021)

Warner Bros.

The Matrix Resurrections picks up 20 years after the events of the Revolutions. The cast and crew have been tight-lipped about the events of the film, but with Reeves and Moss reprising their roles as Neo and Trinity — and Matrix newcomers Jonathan Groff, Neil Patrick Harris, and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II set to join them — fans can hardly wait to see what’s in store.

Stream The Matrix Resurrections on HBO Max.