Keanu Reeves

What was the name of Reeves' girlfriend?

On December 24, 1999, Reeves' girlfriend, Jennifer Syme, gave birth eight months into her pregnancy to Ava Archer Syme-Reeves, who was stillborn. The couple broke up several weeks later. On April 2, 2001, Syme was killed when her vehicle collided with three parked cars on Cahuenga Boulevard in Los Angeles. She was being treated for depression at the time, and police found prescription medication in her car. Reeves, who was scheduled to film The Matrix sequels the following spring, sought "peace and time", according to friend Bret Domrose of Dogstar.


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  • In 1999, Reeves starred in the critically acclaimed science fiction film The Matrix, the first instalment in what would become The Matrix franchise. Reeves portrays computer programmer Thomas Anderson, a hacker using the alias "Neo", who discovers humanity is trapped inside a simulated reality created by intelligent machines. Written and directed by the Wachowskis, Reeves had to prepare by reading Kevin Kelly's Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, and the Economic World, and Dylan Evans's ideas on evolutionary psychology. The principal cast underwent months of intense training with martial arts choreographer Yuen Woo-ping to prepare for the fight scenes. The Matrix proved to be a box office success; several critics considered it to be one of the best science fiction films of all time. Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times felt it was a "wildly cinematic futuristic thriller that is determined to overpower the imagination", despite perceiving weaknesses in the film's dialogue. Janet Maslin of The New York Times credited Reeves for being a "strikingly chic Prada model of an action hero", and thought the martial arts stunts were its most strongest area. The Matrix received Academy Awards for Best Film Editing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects, and Best Sound.

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  • In 2017, Reeves agreed to reprise his role for a sequel in the John Wick franchise, John Wick: Chapter 2. The story carries on from the first film and follows John Wick as he goes on the run when a bounty is placed on him. The film was a critical and commercial success, grossing $171.5¬†million worldwide, more than its predecessor. Chris Hewitt of Empire magazine praised Reeves' performance, which complimented nicely with his previous action roles (Point Break and Speed). However, Justin Chang of the Los Angeles Times described the picture as "a down-and-dirty B-picture with a lustrous A-picture soul". Besides to this large-scale feature, Reeves starred in a drama, To the Bone, in which he plays a doctor helping a young woman with anorexia. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, followed by distribution on Netflix in July. Early reviews were positive, with critics praising its non-glamorized portrayal of anorexia, although the New Statesman reviewer did not think this was enough. 2017 also saw Reeves make cameo appearances in the films A Happening of Monumental Proportions and SPF-18.

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  • In 1999, Reeves starred in the critically acclaimed science fiction film The Matrix, the first instalment in what would become The Matrix franchise. Reeves portrays computer programmer Thomas Anderson, a hacker using the alias "Neo", who discovers humanity is trapped inside a simulated reality created by intelligent machines. Written and directed by the Wachowskis, Reeves had to prepare by reading Kevin Kelly's Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, and the Economic World, and Dylan Evans's ideas on evolutionary psychology. The principal cast underwent months of intense training with martial arts choreographer Yuen Woo-ping to prepare for the fight scenes. The Matrix proved to be a box office success; several critics considered it to be one of the best science fiction films of all time. Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times felt it was a "wildly cinematic futuristic thriller that is determined to overpower the imagination", despite perceiving weaknesses in the film's dialogue. Janet Maslin of The New York Times credited Reeves for being a "strikingly chic Prada model of an action hero", and thought the martial arts stunts were its most strongest area. The Matrix received Academy Awards for Best Film Editing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects, and Best Sound.

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  • By 2002, his professional music career had come to an end when Dogstar disbanded. The band had released two albums during their decade together; Our Little Visionary in 1996 and Happy Ending in 2000. Sometime afterwards, Reeves performed in the band Becky for a year, founded by Dogstar band-mate Rob Mailhouse, but quit in 2005, citing a lack of interest in a serious music career. After being absent from the screen in 2002, Reeves returned to The Matrix sequels in 2003 with The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions, released in May and November, respectively. Principal photography for both films was completed back-to-back, primarily at Fox Studios in Australia. The Matrix Reloaded garnered mostly favourable reviews; John Powers of LA Weekly praised the "dazzling pyrotechnics" but was critical of certain machine-like action scenes. Of Reeves' acting, Powers thought it was somewhat "wooden" but felt he has the ability to "exude a charmed aura". Andrew Walker, writing for London Evening Standard, praised the cinematography ("visually it gives full value as a virtuoso workout for your senses") but he was less taken by the film's "dime-store philosophy". The film grossed $739 million worldwide.

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  • After this series of commercial failures, Reeves career rebounded in 2014. He played the titular role in the action thriller John Wick, directed by Chad Stahelski. In the first instalment of the John Wick franchise, Reeves plays a retired hitman seeking vengeance. He worked closely with the screenwriter to develop the story; "We all agreed on the potential of the project. I love the role, but you want the whole story, the whole ensemble to come to life", Reeves said. Filmed on location in the New York City area, the film was eventually released on October 24 in the United States. The Hollywood Reporter was impressed by the director's "confident, muscular action debut", and Reeves' "effortless" performance, which marked his return to the action genre. Jeannette Catsoulis of The New York Times praised Reeves' fight scenes and noted he is "always more comfortable in roles that demand cool over hot, attitude over emotion". John Wick proved to be a box office success, grossing $86¬†million worldwide. Next, Reeves starred in a smaller-scale horror feature, Knock Knock (2015), a remake of the 1977 film Death Game. Described as "over-the-top destruction" by the Toronto Star, Reeves plays a father, home alone, when two young women show up and start a game of cat and mouse. His other releases in 2015 were the documentaries Deep Web, about crime on the dark web, and Mifune: The Last Samurai, about the life of a Japanese actor (Toshiro Mifune) famous for playing samurai characters. He narrated both films.

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