Friday, July 26, 2013

Personal Heroine: Lana Wachowski

If you have ever watched The Matrix movies you know who Lana Wachowski is; she directed and co-wrote them with her brother Andy, and back when they were reclusive and avoiding the public eye I wanted to know more but of course you could not find anything about them good for them, bad for me.  I respect that urge to want to keep your personal life out of that celebrity madness where you can't have a life--

The Matrix (1999)
I first saw this film when I was visiting UC Berkeley for orientation the summer before I was to begin matriculating in the Fall of 1999.  I had gotten in as a Religious Studies major (because its not impacted) but ended up majoring in Philosophy--so a film like the Matrix had so much of what I was thinking about at the time, I connected with it on a very intellectual level--and of course I loved the aesthetics and costuming of it...Black, Shiny, BDSM gear--you know I am there. I connected with the characters, they all wanted to know the truth-that ever nagging quest that plagues most thinkers: what is existence? what is the Matrix?

I always wanted to know who wrote this awesome sci-fi philosophical film, right at the time when a lot of people were having these existential thoughts.  We as humans work in boundaries, and a millenia tends to make people think the world is changing, the way we think is changing--the episteme changes.

But more importantly I loved the underlying message about being inside and outside--inside there was this feeling of not belonging and "living a lie", while Neo is like the superman in Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra--God:the Matrix itself, the universe created, is fake and thus null and void--DEAD. And we have killed him--by no longer following the rules, Neo recreates himself to how he really feels and is empowered by it.  I would hate to think that a writer and director like Lana does not put herself out there with the characters she creates and how it can be parallel to her life.  Our imaginations sometimes tell us what we want that we deny ourselves and this is how I have come to see it--as a way for her to come to terms with her identity and who she wanted to be.

She speaks this truth to me that I have been trying to express but I didn't know how to express it until she put it this way in regards to our mainstream society's inability to truly understand her experience:

"Without ever interrogating the pathology of a society that refuses to acknowledge the spectrum of gender in the exact same blind way they refuse to see a spectrum of race and sexuality"--Lana Wachowski(@14:14 video below)

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