In The Matrix: Revolutions, when Neo set sail for the machine city, he reached the human field early without facing any resistance. He then told Trinity to follow the three powerlines to the machine city.

enter image description here

If bombing the fields was cruel/inhumane, why didn’t Zion simply cut down powerlines and then attack the machine city?

  • Because the machines would have retaliated and likely have sufficient stores of energy to simply rebuild the power lines while defending themselves.
    – Valorum
    Jun 22, 2022 at 6:46
  • Because the machines would have retaliated ~> Machines were already attacking Zion. What more could they retaliate?
    – user931
    Jun 22, 2022 at 6:49
  • I don't get the impression that cutting off the power to the machine city would render them defenceless to an assault force that is millions of times smaller than their own population
    – Valorum
    Jun 22, 2022 at 6:51
  • 4
    They look pretty substantial to me, do we know that the humans could destroy the conduits?
    – Cadence
    Jun 22, 2022 at 7:16
  • 2
    Were they the only power lines? Potentially many other sources as well as any stores - could be a tiny fraction of the total power supply.
    – Michael
    Jun 22, 2022 at 8:42

1 Answer 1


These three power lines are almost certainly not the only lines to the Machine City. We know that the population of the Matrix is about 6.5 billion, which means that the surface area to house all the human bodies plugged into the Matrix would be substantial. Indeed, Morpheus says that the fields of humans are "endless":

There are fields, endless fields, where human beings are no longer born.

The Matrix (transcript)

Such "endless" fields would likely require many more power lines from each field to the Machine City -- the three power lines shown in The Matrix Revolutions would therefore constitute only a small fraction of the total power delivered to the Machine City.

Furthermore, Neo and Trinity saw those power lines at a highly unusual time: almost the entire Sentinel army was attacking Zion, and Zion was about to be destroyed entirely. Under more normal circumstances, the power lines would have been guarded by Sentinels. The machines probably opted not to leave any Sentinels behind to guard them because (a) sending more Sentinels to Zion would increase the machines' chances of achieving a victory, and (b) the obvious strategy for Zion would be to keep every ship near Zion to defend the human city itself rather than try to attack the machines elsewhere. Neo and Trinity only managed to encounter these undefended power lines because Neo was thinking outside of the box.

Moreover, the machines evidently have considerable energy storage -- the Sentinels (which number at least a quarter of a million) are obviously not directly connected to the human power source -- therefore the destruction of the power lines would not shut down the machines immediately even if those three were the only power lines. It would take time for the loss of the power lines to affect the machines, and Zion did not have time -- its destruction was imminent. The machines could have finished off Zion and then tasked Sentinels to repair the power lines before they ran out of energy.

  • 1
    Not to mention that the machines surely would have noticed the fluctuation in power caused by the powerline being cut and sent a group of Sentinels to investigate, destroy the attackers, and make repairs. Even a small group, given how many Sentinels and other forces the machines have, would be enough to overpower humans making the sabotage.
    – user25730
    Jun 23, 2022 at 1:31

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.