* AcclaimedFlop: Roger Ebert heaped praise on it, giving the movie four stars. It has since been VindicatedByHistory and is held up as a classic.
* ActorAllusion: Retroactively for Jennifer Connelly. She would do [[Film/RequiemForADream two]] [[Literature/HouseOfSandAndFog more]] movies where she stands solemnly on the edge of a pier looking out to the ocean. The first one was a complete accident, and Connelly didn't tell Darren Aronofsky until afterwards. By the time the third film came around, her reaction was "how many times have I done this already?"
* DuelingMovies: A four-way contest - between ''Film/TheMatrix'', ''Film/TheThirteenthFloor'' and ''Film/{{eXistenZ}}''.
* ExecutiveMeddling:
** ViewersAreMorons, so we have to explain the plot in an OpeningNarration so they don't get confused and scared. Thankfully excised in the Directors Cut (or just mute the sound for the first few minutes.)
** The movie was given an R rating by the MPAA mostly because it had a "weird" concept (there were a few shots of topless women, but their collective duration is very short).
* FakeAmerican: Rufus Sewell (British) and Melissa George (Australian) both do very good American accents.
* FlipFlopOfGod: There are two differing opinions between the director Alex Proyas and the co-writer David S Goyer. Proyas believes [[spoiler: the humans are the inhabitants of an interstellar space ship that were abducted by the Strangers]]. Goyer on the other hand believes [[spoiler: they're all actually dead and the city is a sort of purgatory for them]].
* PropRecycling: Several of the sets from this film were reused in ''TheMatrix'', most recognizably the corrugated rooftops seen during Trinity's run from the cops in the opening, and the staircase with the black-and-white tile floor from the SWAT raid and Morpheus' capture.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: An early draft of the script would have had Dr Schreber getting skinned alive during the climax.