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The Keanu Reeves Sci-Fi Flop Getting A Second Chance On Amazon Prime

Beloved actor Keanu Reeves has starred in some major, epic films in his career, from The Matrix to John Wick. Even when he makes a brief cameo in a movie, as was the case for Always Be My Maybe, his performance stands out, instantly turning into a meme. But being a great actor is just part of the reason why he's held in such high regard; plenty of his co-stars over the years have gone on the record to discuss what a consummate professional Reeves is any time he's on the job. Perhaps our favorite story about him involves helping out a pre-famous Octavia Spencer when her car broke down in the middle of Beverly Hills. He didn't just call AAA for her; he got behind the car and actually pushed. 

Considering what a great guy he is, it's only fair to reconsider some of his... uh, lesser-revered works. Before he changed the world of science-fiction with The Matrix and lent his likeness to Cyberpunk 2077Reeves made his first foray into the genre of cyberpunk with a little-known film called Johnny Mnemonic. It's available to watch for free with an Amazon Prime subscription, and now's the perfect time to give it another chance. After all, this film does take place in 2021.

Johnny Mnemonic is a fascinating look back at how we saw the future in cinema

Johnny Mnemonic got a lot wrong about the year 2021. Dolphins aren't used as data-crackers (that we know of), and people are currently unable to put computer chips into their brains to transport data (that we know of). However, as poorly-reviewed as the movie was, according to Rotten Tomatoes (it's not pretty), there's a surprising amount of plot points that actually did come to fruition. A good portion of the movie deals with increasing class disparity between the mega-corporations and the bottom rung of society. It also predicted the implementations of full body scans at airports prior to 9/11. We have iPhones, Johnny Mnemonic had eyephones (seriously). Out of all the things that could've come true from this film, we're just disappointed that laser whips haven't been invented. 

Amongst all the futuristic tech and social commentary, the film follows Johnny (Reeves), who works as a data courier taking on an important job for a client. The data he needs to transport exceeds his memory capacity, putting his life in jeopardy, but the price is right. Unfortunately, it also makes him the target of less-than-ideal characters. He receives aid from bodyguard Jane (Dina Meyer in her very first film role), and, with the help of tech-doctor Spider (Henry Rollins), they try to save his life. Johnny Mnemonic may not be the most nuanced sci-fi flick to come out, but given its incredible cast plus the fact that it's set in 2021 in a society in which scientists are racing to find a cure for a global pandemic, it's probably worth a watch.