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Tron Legacy

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What would it be like to be inside a computer? To have programs you’d written actually walk and fight alongside you? What would it all even look like? These intriguing questions were all answered in the original Tron film, released in 1982. The film is about young programmer Kevin Flynn, who is sent to the other side of the computer screen by a laser mishap, and must bring about the downfall of the intelligent tyrannical, Master Control Program, or MCP. The MCP has been preventing innocent programs from communicating with their users. Defeating the MCP involves surviving a series of gladiatorial games, and evading a few armies. Of course, one might step back from the DVD player after watching, and ask, “Why didn’t someone just uninstall the MCP? Oh well, it was more fun doing it the hard way.”


It certainly was more fun doing it the hard way. In Tron: Legacy, Flynn creates a new, utopian mainframe, but is trapped there for 20 years by a rogue, genocidal program named CLU. His disappearance effectively orphans his son, Sam. Sam is lured into the world of the Grid, as it is called in “Legacy", and is subjected to the same gladiatorial challenges as his father before him. He escapes and is reunited with his father. Unfortunately, Sam’s coming has opened "the portal", enabling CLU to escape to the real world with armies of repurposed programs, to take over the real world, and remake it in his idea of perfection. The rest of the movie is an all out sprint to reach the portal before CLU. Of course, Sam is reconciled with his father, and escapes with a pretty, young program named Quorra. All appears well until the senior Flynn must sacrifice himself to destroy CLU, leaving Sam to carry on his “Legacy”.


The movie, directed by Joseph Kosinski, received a two sided review from venerable film critic Roger Ebert, who stated that the film was a “3-D sound-and light show that plays to the eyes and ears more than the mind.” Exactly, Mr. Ebert! Wasn’t it great? Ebert went on to praise the movie’s state of the art visuals and sound effects, which were genuinely exciting. The movie was indulgent, and therefore fun. If you don’t allow yourself to fist pump mid-movie to Daft Punk’s exhilarating soundtrack, what joy is there to be had? I pity those viewers, like Roger Ebert, whose enjoyment of such a sexy production is precluded by their need for a cutting-edge, original plot. Ebert referred to the plot as a “catastrophe,” and “well beyond the possibility of logical explanation,” which must’ve come as a huge surprise to him, considering that Legacy is a science-fiction film, from Disney. Pardon my sarcasm, but what were you expecting, Mr. Ebert? Were you wanting to see No Country for Old Programs? The plot may have been a little bit too simple for your tastes, Mr. Ebert, but at least it had a tough conflict, realistic subplots, and logical character development.


That’s strange. Tron: Legacy is beginning to sound like… a Disney movie?! Surely they can’t all be, dare I say it, predictable yet enjoyable?! I don’t know about you, Mr. Ebert, but in Wall-E, those little robots taught me how to love. In similar Disney fashion, Tron: Legacy is a fanciful feat of effects, with an enchanting soundtrack. However, this time, the movie is about video games, gladiatorial motorcycle races, and literally everyone carries a lethal weapon on their back, in the form of “awesome laser discs”, as I call them. The movie lacks sing-alongs like in other Disney favorites, but one can gladly “unce” with fists held high along with Daft Punk’s unforgettable original soundtrack. Through in some quality performances from the great Jeff Bridges, and some new faces such as Garret Hedlund, and Tron: Legacy is a fun movie, in every sense of the word.




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