It was 15 years ago today that 'The Matrix' first embedded itself in our consciousness, imprinting its lasting impact on our sense of what's real, what might not be, and lending itself to many an occasion when we can say, "this feels like something out of the Matrix."
Keanu Reeves' name was made as confused hacker turned revolutionary Neo
Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Ann Moss, Hugo Weaving and Laurence Fishburne were the stars of the Wachowski siblings' deeply original sci-fi outing, where Neo (Reeves) is a humdrum computer hacker, until he learns the nature of his 'reality' and his place in the war against the uber-controllers.
WATCH the video of the best bits from the Trilogy - do you think it's dated, or does it still hold up?
Since then, the names Neo, Trinity, Morpheus and, most enigmatically of all, Agent Smith, instantly conjure up visions of white rooms, post-apocalyptic basements and lots and lots of black leather and Lycra. Plus 'taking the red pill' - as Neo does when he accepts his destiny - has become shorthand for never going back.
Keanu Reeves co-starred with Carrie-Ann Moss and Laurence Fishburne
Plus any film that uses 'bullet time' - slowing down the central part of an action sequence while everything else around it continues at normal speed - can trace its DNA back to this film, which first brought this technique into the mainstream.
As for Keanu Reeves, this film and its two sequels transformed his career from that of sidekick stoner as one half of Bill and Ted, into something for more enigmatic. He'd previously started this journey with roles in 'Speed' and 'Point Break' alongside more fluffy fare, but it was as the world-saving Neo that his name was made, in a role that he has, arguably, never since matched.
Which might not matter because, true to form, there are rumours flying around that the Wachowskis are set to get to work on a new set of Matrix films...