A significant number of my friends who are interested in Buddhism see the Matrix more as a parallel to the teachings of the Buddha (excepting the violence, I suppose).

Lessee... according to Buddhism, the world around us is maya, illusion. Our attachment to the illusions around us keeps us trapped in the cycle of reincarnation. What we should be working towards is freeing ourselves from these illusions so that we can reach nirvana. Boddhisattvas (or enlightened ones) can help you or point you in the right direction, but those who are still trapped on the wheel of reincarnation (especially those from a different culture, like Americans) will mostly not understand and will try to keep you from finding nirvana. Sounds like the Matrix to me.

Enlightenment is sometimes described as a place surrounded by a high wall. Some, finding the wall, jump over it and pass on to enlightenment and nirvana. Others, finding the wall, turn back around and go back the way they came, so that they can lead yet others towards enlightenment. It remains a personal search, though. "I can only show you the door. You're the one that has to walk through it."

As an aside, I don't consider Morpheus' statement about people over a certain (unspecified, btw) age not being able to make the transition to be ageist, but more a reasonable comment, based on sound psychological principles. The things that happen to us when we are young imprint themselves strongly upon us. As we grow older, we lose some of our mental flexibility; it is far easier for children to learn foreign languages, for example, than for adults.