‘Matrix Resurrections’ Tops Redbox Disc Rentals; ‘Scream’ Remains No. 1 on VOD Chart

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment’s The Matrix Resurrections debuted at No. 1 on Redbox’s disc rental chart the week ended March 13.

The fourth “Matrix” movie and the first in 18 years earned $37.7 million at the domestic box office.

The top title on the Redbox On Demand chart for the second week in a row was the Scream relaunch from Paramount Home Entertainment. The fifth entry in the “Scream” horror franchise, which reunites several cast members from the original 1996 film, earned $81 million at the domestic box office.

Disney-owned 20th Century Studios’ The King’s Man dropped to No. 2 on the disc rental chart, which tracks DVD and Blu-ray Disc rentals at Redbox’s more than 40,000 red kiosks. Director Matthew Vaughn’s prequel to the “Kingsman” action franchise also fell to No. 7 on the Redbox On Demand chart, which tracks digital VOD and sellthrough transactions.

No. 2 on the Redbox On Demand chart was Lionsgate’s Dangerous, a thriller with Scott Eastwood as an ex-con who violates his parole to investigate how his brother died.

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No. 3 on both charts was Sony Pictures’ Ghostbusters: Afterlife. MGM’s House of Gucci, distributed on disc by Universal Pictures Home Entertainment, was the No. 4 disc rental and No. 5 on the digital chart.

No. 5 on Redbox’s disc rental chart, and No. 6 on the digital chart, was Lionsgate’s American Underdog, the biopic about Kurt Warner’s rise to becoming an unlikely NFL hall of famer.

The No. 4 digital title was MGM’s Dog, a comedy starring Channing Tatum as a man escorting a military dog to the funeral of his fallen commander. It was released via premium VOD March 11.

Top DVD and Blu-ray Disc Rentals, Redbox Kiosks, Week Ended March 13:

  1. The Matrix Resurrections — Warner
  2. The King’s Man — 20th Century
  3. Ghostbusters: Afterlife — Sony Pictures
  4. House of Gucci — Universal/MGM
  5. American Underdog — Lionsgate
  6. Eternals — Disney/Marvel
  7. The 355 — Universal
  8. A Day to Die — Redbox
  9. Redeeming Love — Universal
  10. Clifford the Big Red Dog — Paramount

 

Top Digital (VOD + Sellthrough), Redbox On Demand, Week Ended March 13:

  1. Scream (2022) — Paramount
  2. Dangerous — Lionsgate
  3. Ghostbusters: Afterlife — Sony Pictures
  4. Dog — MGM
  5. House of Gucci — MGM
  6. American Underdog — Lionsgate
  7. The King’s Man — 20th Century
  8. Venom: Let There Be Carnage — Sony Pictures
  9. The Desperate Hour — Vertical
  10. A Day to Die — Redbox

 

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The Matrix Resurrections

4K ULTRA HD BLU-RAY REVIEW: 

Street Date 3/8/22;
Warner;
Sci-Fi;
Box Office $37.69 million;
$19.99 DVD, $24.99 Blu-ray, $29.99 UHD DVD;
Rated ‘R’ for violence and some language.
Stars Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Jonathan Groff, Jessica Henwick, Neil Patrick Harris, Jada Pinkett Smith, Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

The fourth “Matrix” movie has a lot of fun with the idea of serving as a meta-commentary on the original trilogy. When it actually has to zero in on being a “Matrix” movie, it kind of hits a wall, but at least it opens the door for more movies.

At the end of the third movie in 2003, Neo and Trinity (Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Annie Moss) seemingly sacrificed themselves to bring peace between the remnants of humanity and the machines that sought to enslave them. Resurrections opens with the idea that the original story might have been a video game created by Thomas Anderson  Reeves). Then word comes down that his gaming studios’ parent company, Warner Bros., wants a fourth “Matrix,” and will do one with or without the original creative team. This is pretty much what happened in real life when the studio starting planning for a reboot of the franchise before director Lana Wachowski and Reeves signed on. So Resurrections is a bit of a tongue-in-cheek title referencing both the return of the characters thought killed off, and the long-dormant franchise itself.

Anderson is getting therapy to deal with thoughts of his life just being a computer simulation like his games, before events similar to the opening of the “Matrix” start to unfold to once more lead him back to reality (while using flashbacks to clips from the original trilogy to hammer home the point that it’s all connected).

This leads to some lengthy exposition and a healthy dose of philosophical ruminations about the nature of consciousness and free will, since it wouldn’t be a “Matrix” movie without it. Then the second half of the film is essentially an extended sci-fi action scene to hit the reset button on the premise so that Neo and Trinity can lead a new crop of characters in the fight against the machines. However, the lack of popular legacy characters such as Laurence Fishburne’s Morpheus is likely to leave a lot of fans cold.

Matrix Resurrections is entertaining in parts and has some intriguing ideas, but if there are future sequels they will have a lot of heavy lifting to do to prove there’s still life left in the franchise beyond running in circles.

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The Blu-ray includes several behind-the-scenes featurettes, including a nine-minute video of various cast members awkwardly recapping the story of the original trilogy. In act many of the featurettes are somewhat introspective about examining the film within the context of the franchise.

The primary behind-the-scenes featurette is the 31-minute “Resurrecting the Matrix,” which delves into revisiting the franchise after 18 years and crafting the new installment to expand the mythology (described at one point as not another box in a series of boxes, but a box that encases the previous ones).

The eight-minute “Neo & Trinity: Return to the Matrix” gives Reeves and Moss a chance to reflect on their characters’ journeys and their own personal friendship. The eight-and-a-half-minute “Allies & Adversaries: The Matrix Remixed” features supporting cast members reflecting on the expansion of the franchise, while the six-minute “Matrix for Life” features more reflections on the franchise from the cast and filmmakers. The five-minute “I Still Know Kung-Fu” explores the making of some of the action scenes.

Rounding out the bonus materials are “The Matrix Reactions,” a series of nine videos totaling nearly 49 minutes in which members of the cast and production team discuss individual scenes.

Overall, the extras, with almost two hours of combined footage, present a pretty thorough examination of the making of the film.

Originally published as a streaming review Dec. 27, 2021.

‘The Matrix Resurrections’ Available for Digital Ownership Jan. 25, on Disc March 8

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release The Matrix Resurrections for premium digital ownership beginning Jan. 25, followed by a Blu-ray, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release March 8.

The fourth “Matrix” film follows up on the trilogy that ended in 2003, and features Keanu Reeves returning to the role of Neo as he learns about the aftermath of the war between humanity and the machines he thought he ended in the previous films, and whether his reality remains part of a computer simulation. His mission becomes to reconnect with his lost love, Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss).

The cast also includes Yahya Abdul Mateen II, Jessica Henwick, Jonathan Groff, Neil Patrick Harris, Priyanka Chopra Jonas and Jada Pinkett Smith.

The Blu-ray and 4K editions will include several behind-the-scenes featurettes: “No One Can Be Told What The Matrix Is,” “Resurrecting The Matrix, “Neo x Trinity: Return to the Matrix,” “Allies + Adversaries: The Matrix Remixed” and “Matrix for Life.” Also included will be a series of “The Matrix Reactions” segments: “Echo Opening,” Deus Ex Machina,” “Welcome to IØ,” Bullet Time Redux,” “Morpheus vs Neo,” “Exiles Fight,” “Neo vs Smith,” “The San Fran Chase” and “The San Fran Jump.”

The DVD will include just the “Welcome to IØ” reaction.

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