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"A Glitch in the Matrix" (2021) Review: Is It Good?

Mohsen is an online writer who loves watching and reviewing exciting documentaries, movies, and games.

"A Glitch in the Matrix" (2021)

"A Glitch in the Matrix" (2021)

A Glitch in the Matrix (2021)

A Glitch in the Matrix is a 2021 documentary by Rodney Ascher about the “simulation hypothesis,” which proposes that we’re living in a virtual reality created by other intelligent beings.

The film is a collage of interviews with people who believe in the theory. But it also expands on the real-life experiences of Philip K. Dick, the American science fiction writer who famously said, “We are living in a computer-programmed reality, and the only clue we have to it is when some variable is changed, and some alteration in our reality occurs.”

Despite the interesting choice of topic, A Glitch in the Matrix is a bad film. It suffers from a lack of structure and purpose, leaving the viewer with a bunch of random theories and absurd stories.

Avatar for Brother Laeo Mystwood, which obviously screams credibility.

Avatar for Brother Laeo Mystwood, which obviously screams credibility.

5 Reasons Not to Watch A Glitch in the Matrix

Watching A Glitch in the Matrix is a waste of time—at least for most people. The film will disappoint you unless you enjoy conspiracy theories with no hard evidence.

Here’s why you should not watch this documentary.

#1. Film Has No Structure

A Glitch in the Matrix is a mash of pointless interviews with no act 1, act 2, or act 3. No beginning, no middle, and no end.

The opening introduces one of the main characters, Paul Gude, a totally random guy with no related academic background. Then it jumps to Philip K. Dick’s claims about the simulation—or parallel universe—theories. And it ends with the story of a guy who murdered his parents because he was obsessed with The Matrix movie.

I patiently waited for a payoff or conclusion at the end, hoping that the stories would connect or at least make sense at some point. But it was a waste of time. The randomness and chaos of the film were chronic.

Author Philip K. Dick discussing life in a computer-simulated reality. Metz, France, September 1977.

Author Philip K. Dick discussing life in a computer-simulated reality. Metz, France, September 1977.

#2. Stories Are Ridiculously Irrelevant

Throughout the film, you constantly ask yourself, “Is this a joke or some sort of parody?”

Like any conspiracy theory-themed film, you hear people reporting the experiences that made them believe in the simulation hypothesis. But the stories are beyond silly.

One guy says, “I was 11 years old when I realized everyone else is a chemical robot.” Another believes that we live in a simulation because he used to encounter everything he thought of.

But the most stupid story comes from Alex LeVine. He recalls a trip to Mexico that somehow got him involved in a car accident with a bunch of drunk friends. But the “extraordinary” event that made him believe in the simulation theory was that the chief accountant of the police officer showed up and saved his ass from being jailed.

You are forced to sit there and listen to this stoner sh ** that is neither scientific nor interesting.

Avatar for Alex LeVine, who didn't go to jail and built a simulation theory around it.

Avatar for Alex LeVine, who didn't go to jail and built a simulation theory around it.

#3. No Counterarguments

If you google simulation hypothesis, you’ll be bombed with counter theories. But you see none in A Glitch in the Matrix.

It’s like the creators don’t want you to think about any other possibility—especially those that make more sense.

Nick Bostrom, who popularized the simulation theory, is the only academic person you are allowed to listen to. However, his arguments have been heavily criticized, and some physicists like Sabine Hossenfelder have called his claim pseudoscience.

George F. R. Ellis, a well-known cosmologist, once said, “[the hypothesis] is totally impracticable from a technical viewpoint" and that “protagonists seem to have confused science fiction with science. Late-night pub discussion is not a viable theory.”

But for some reason, there’s no room for such counterpoints in the film.

Philosopher Nick Bostrom is dying on the "life is a simulation" hill.

Philosopher Nick Bostrom is dying on the "life is a simulation" hill.

#4. No Reason to Care About Characters

Paul Gude, Brother Laeo Mystwood, Alex LeVine, and Jesse Orion, the film’s main characters, have no academic background relating to the simulation hypothesis.

There is absolutely no reason you should care for what they say. But A Glitch in the Matrix wants you to.

The interviews are awkward. You feel the same pressure as the characters to come up with exciting stories knowing they’ll fail.

At some point, I was basically watching my own stoned friends coming up with crazy ideas for fun.

But I’m still wondering why the director felt we needed to hear these random people’s ideas. Was he high, too?

Side note: One guy even said that we should install giant screens on our planet so that we can send a message to the simulation’s creators. (I kid you not, they literally said that).

17th century philosopher and scientist René Descartes considered a version of “simulation theory” as the trick of an evil demon.

17th century philosopher and scientist René Descartes considered a version of “simulation theory” as the trick of an evil demon.

#5. Arguments Are Weak

Here’s what the film claims: the simulation hypothesis is legit because it’s hard to argue against.

You are not presented with one convincing argument throughout the 1-hour-and-50-minute-long documentary.

The first guy, Paul Gude, keeps talking about how lonely his childhood was and how it made him think about the idea of living in a simulation. (It’s not even an argument).

The other guy, Brother Laeo Mystwood, claims that he was once in a deprivation tank, and he felt like his third eye had opened, and that made him realize we’re all a bunch of codes, not actual humans. (Talk about science, huh?).

Don’t Watch A Glitch in the Matrix Unless You’re High

If you’re wondering whether it’s worth watching A Glitch in the Matrix, the answer is no. Don’t waste your time.

It’s a mishmash of stoner talks and crazy ideas of people without scientific knowledge.

But it might be a fun watch for when you’re high AF and are open to believing any conspiracy theory, whether it’s the flat earth thing or the simulation theory.

© 2022 Mohsen Baqery