The Love Bug

Bomb Rating: 

There is a great discovery to be had by watching this 1969 movie: It's the original inspiration for "The Matrix." Yes, one piece of crap can indeed inspire another piece of crap.

Think I'm joking? Wait for the scene where Tennessee (Buddy Hackett) tries to explain his theory about Herbie (the 40 horsepower Volkswagen bug with a mind of its own) to the obnoxious Jim (Dean Jones). Jim has won a bunch of races with Herbie and thinks that he's doing everything. He's in control. We all know the truth, of course.

Herbie is in control. Essentially, Jim is living in an imaginary world. Though Jim isn't exactly the One, he's much like Neo in that he sort of understands something isn't quite right. However, it takes the philosopher Tennessee, who's kind of like Morpheus, to explain it to him. Tennessee goes into this long explanation of how he went to China to study Buddhism and he understands that human intelligence is limited and that machines will eventually become sentient. He actually says the following lines: "We humans have blown it and another civilization is going to take a turn. We take machines and stuff them with information until they're smarter than we are."

So naturally, Jim doesn't quite believe this, but it's only a matter of time before he figures it out: Herbie can think for himself and the world that Jim knew, the one where he was in control, falls away. Now, there's not really an alternate universe here, unless you consider that we enter a world where Buddy Hackett attempts to act, but the foundation is set.

Bah! The Wachowski brothers - plagiarists!

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