The Internet is a revolutionary communications device, one with an unparalleled ability to connect almost anyone with anyone else, anywhere, at anytime. For the first time in history, we are connected. Our Internet lives connect us in a virtual “cyberspace,” where we can communicate, talk, share ideas and even feelings and energy. Many love stories have already been written about couples that met on the Internet, and found their real-life selves having as much in common as their Internet ones.
The intrigue and power of this incredible communications tool keeps inspiring stories of all kinds, in book form and also onscreen. Some great films have been made dealing directly with the idea of an alternate reality existing somewhere in an Internet type of cyber-reality. Some other very intriguing earlier films have dealt with notions surrounding the idea of cyberspace, and the effect of computers on our lives, real and virtual. Here’s a roundup of a couple of the best ones:
Tron—Way back in 1982, Jeff Bridges starred in this forward-looking sci-fi fantasy about a computer hacker and arcade owner who is double-crossed by a business associate and digitally transported into the mainframe of a computer system. He enters a virtual world he helped create, and must find a way out. The film presaged many of the ideas about the Internet, and was so popular it has inspired a new sequel, as well as a video game.
The Matrix—This iconic, uber-cool 1999 megahit starred sci-fi action favorite Keanu Reeves as Neo, a mild-mannered software geek who hacks computers at night. He is taken into an alternate universe called “The Matrix” by some dark figures that have knowledge of conspiracy. The film’s depiction of an underground reality is stunning and utterly intriguing.
Written and directed by Larry and Andy Wachowski, “the Matrix” set a new standard for futurism in film. It’s a sci-fi classic.