Matriculated is entirely different from Kid’s Story. Especially in terms of art, animation and style. While Kid’s Story had really messy animation, everything is moves extremely fluid n Matriculated. The extremely messy drawings have made way for a strange, futuristic-like look on one side, and very colourful, psychedelic CG-scenes on the other side. In this case, literally.
The story takes place outside of the Matrix. It deals with a group of rebels, one woman in particular. The overall air is dark, making the drawings fit quite well in their surroundings. The woman runs into a couple of robots: runners. They’ve got quite original designs, moving with extremely thin legs. In any case, after a small chase, the woman takes out both of the runners, and one of them gets taken to the camp of the rebels.
The goal of these rebels is to attempt to convert this machine to their side. Not by reprogramming it, but making it join their forces out of its own will. They do this by connecting both themselves as the runner to a Mini-Matrix (how did they call these again?). They get brought into a psychedelic world, in which an illusion is given to the runner that it can rely on the rebels. It’s quite interesting to see how they managed to do it. Slowly, the machine changes from machine into a humanoid-shape. We follow the runner, as it tries to make sense out of the virtual world. In the end, it gets converted.
Though then, it seems that reinforcements have arrived. It seems that the runner, before it was defeated, called for backup. This backup now has found the rebels’ main quarter, and are starting to destroy everything and everyone. In the end, the intruders get destroyed, but the price for this is high. The runner aids in fighting the intruders. When all is finished, the runner is the only one left standing, with the woman badly hurt, as the only survivor. The runner plugs the two of them back in the Mini-Matrix, in the hope of saving her. Inside, however, the woman is terrified when she sees the runner. So terrified, that she flees, and dies.
It’s indeed quite sad to see the woman who tried to convert you, the woman you believed was nice and embraced you, scaring herself to death by seeing you, only minutes later. Also, the fact that AI can actually be converted by toying with their morals also is quite intriguing. It’s shown something fake, though its AI isn’t able to determine that it’s fake. That’s why it works. The style of this film also was quite appealing. Both the colourful, psychedelic scenes, as well as the dark, futuristic scenes looked stunning. Especially the fluid animation was quite impressive.
Still, the voice-acting was once again a problem. I don’t know whether it was my version of the video, or it was meant to be like that, but the voices sounded really vague, which didn’t really work. I also feel that this film dragged on a bit too much. Currently, its length is 16 minutes. It could easily have been brought back to just ten of these. I also only began to like the ending when I watched it for the second time. Dunno what caused that.
Overall, it was quite an interesting watch. I think I liked Kid’s Story a bit more, though. But that’s mostly because of the themes which were more appealing, and the interesting art style.