Hackernoon logoSundance 2021: Why 'A Glitch in the Matrix' is a Danger to Today's Youth by@cyberguyesq

Sundance 2021: Why 'A Glitch in the Matrix' is a Danger to Today's Youth

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@cyberguyesqDrew Rossow

Internet and Cybersecurity Attorney | Protecting You Against Social Media Crime #OwnYourData

Source: Sundance Institute | A Glitch in the Matrix

Admittingly, I thought the documentary would actually take a detour, and reveal how sick this conspiracy theory actually is. But instead, I was met with extreme disappointment as the film just took a dark turn for the worst.

It's hard to fathom just what the hell the documentary's director Rodney Ascher (Room 237) was thinking when he decided to take such a broad view of Simulation Theory.

#1 - Simulation Theory is Nothing More Than a Conspiracy Theory...Take Caution

"Simulation Theory" , in its barest form presents a question as to how "real" the world around us really is. In pop-culture, it's known as "The Matrix" trilogy. But do not confuse the two, as the social, moral, and ethical value behind the theory is significantly lacking.

The film's skeleton is predicated upon the conspiracy theories that were manufactured by sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick, beginning with his 1977 speech in France titled, "If You Find This World Bad, You Should See Some of the Others."

Dick, known for authoring dark futuristic works such as A Scanner Darkly, The Man in the High Castle, Minority Report, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, and We Can Remember It For You, confesses that back in 1974, a dose of Sodium Pentothal for impacted wisdom teeth allowed him to have this epiphany, which he refers to as an "acute flash" of a "recovered memory" about a world and life that was not his own.

He compiled this information into the now published work, known as "The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick." What Dick was trying to reveal to anyone who would listen, is that the world in which we think we are part of, is not really our world.

In other words, what does it mean if the world we know (or think we know) is manufactured, or simulated? Should we consider the people we meet everyday to be "real", or simply non-playable characters (NPCs) as you would expect to see in a video game?

#2 - Ideas Are Like Parasites

Source: Sundance Institute

Have we learned NOTHING from "The Matrix Defense?" I mean for fuck sake, Joshua Cooke literally thought he was "disconnecting" from our world's version of The Matrix, when he decided to brutally murder his mother and father in cold-blood. More on that in the next section.

This entire documentary attempts to dangerously convince viewers that simulation theory is actually real, which requires us to question our very existence and reality. In other words, we are all living in a modern day Truman Show. The problem with the theory, is that these examples provided throughout the abysmal documentary, are examples that these gamers have themselves created, so of course their theories make sense.

DiCaprio said it best back in 2006, when he compared the smallest of ideas to that of a living parasite:

“What is the most resilient parasite? Bacteria? A virus? An intestinal worm? An idea. Resilient...highly contagious. Once an idea has taken hold of the brain, it’s almost impossible to eradicate. An idea that is fully formed – fully understood – that sticks; right in there somewhere.”

If you haven't seen Christopher Nolan's Inception, I highly suggest you do, because it will put this entire review in perspective. A fan-favorite quote and take-away is the above statement made by Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio), where in attempts at clarifying the dangers of "inception," compares ideas to that of parasites.

The biggest take away from Glitch, is that it in and of itself is a parasite. A danger. Highly contagious to a potential viewer who may themselves question the reality around them, so much as to believe they can "free" themselves from it, at whatever the cost to their own safety and/or the safety of others.

Why else would they highly allude to some of the most highly-rated forms of media known to pop-culture today? In addition to The Matrix, viewers will see the talking-head interviews make reference throughout the documentary to several TV shows, video games, and movies such as Star Wars, Defending Your Life, Minecraft, Avatar, Batman Forever, Total Recall, Rick and Morty, The Wizard of Oz, A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Adjustment Bureau, They Live, Terminator, Red Dead Redemption, among countless other works.

And for what?

To try and sway viewers into this conspiracy theory that in 1999 the Wachowski Siblings purposefully injected Simulation Theory into society when it released The Matrix.

#3 - Confirmation Bias is a Sign of Trouble

Confirmation bias, as an ideology that is quite concerning. It is a notion where individuals become prisoners of their own assumptions, attributed to the direct influence of desire on beliefs.

It serves to "morph" an individual's reality of truth. When people would like a certain idea or concept to be true, they end up believing it to be true, no matter the cost. We have seen this first-hand for the past four years with former U.S. President Trump in The White House. This notion of "wishful thinking" is nothing more than a poor excuse to forego all logic and reason, halting the search for *accurate* information when the evidence gathered thus far confirms the views or prejudices one would like to be true.

An example would be Trump's delusional beliefs that there was (1) election fraud and (2) the election was stolen from him.

#4 - What Is "The Matrix Defense?" Good Thing I'm a Lawyer...

"The Matrix Defense" is legal insanity plea, derived from the 1999 sci-fi film trilogy, The Matrix. The defense is based upon the idea that we live in a simulated world, to which we must free ourselves from, at the cost of either our own life, or someone else's. Disturbingly, this is an actual legal defense that has been very difficult to successfully prove.

Just when I thought the film couldn't get any worse, it took probably the most dangerous, dark, and toxic highway it could have, when it tried to actually explain and justify the behavior of Joshua Cooke, a Matrix fanatic who at 19-years-old, brutally murdered his parents with a 12-gauge shotgun in cold-blood in 2003. In efforts to bring a successful "insanity" defense, Cooke eventually pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 40 years in jail. He isn't scheduled for release until 2040.

But don't worry, the documentary got Cooke on the jailhouse phone to explain and justify to viewers, what he now considers to be a "huge mistake"; that his conspiracy theory can lead many "troubled children" and youth to believe and assume that "humans aren't real", which could present a very great danger to themselves and those around them. It's tough to determine what Cooke's real motivations behind the back-to-back murders of his parents actually was.

Was it the domestic abuse he was subject to at home? Was it the incessant bullying he was victimized by at school? Was it a mental illness he unknowingly struggled with? Or was it just a deep infatuation and obsession with a sci-film that presented many moral, ethical, and philosophical questions as to the nature of our own reality? We will never know.

A Glitch in the Matrix” opens in select theaters and on-demand Feb. 5, but please for the love of all that is right in OUR REAL WORLD, don't go and see it.

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