Tron Legacy Thoughts (Total Spoilers)

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I had my balls rocked by Tron Legacy. I don’t mean to be disgusting, but if that kind of statement grosses you out this isn’t the blog for you. Regardless, I loved the shit out of the new Tron. Is it perfect? Crom, no. It’s got a lot of problems. For me, the good outweighed any of the bad and I was able to escape in one of the most pure nerd fantasies I’ve seen in a long time. It was satisfiying in the popcorn fueled funfest way that I had wished that the Transformer or G.I. Joe movies would have been.

As usual, I’m not going into full on review mode. I’m going to hit you up on some of my thoughts in bullet point form. You know, like a review, but for retarded people. Also please note that this thing is written with the idea that you either saw the film or don’t give a crap about spoilers.

The 3D was nice, but…: …it wasn’t necessary. I don’t think 3D is ever necessary, but I wouldn’t feel like I was missing out watching it in 2D. This is completely the opposite of Avatar, which relies solely on the joy of the extra dimension. I believe this makes Tron Legacy a better film in respect to how it holds up without the extra bell/whistle.

It’s the Ultimate Nerd Fantasy: Tron is blatantly a nerd fantasy. Dude goes into a computer, gets a fancy electronic boomerang, rides an awesome motorcycle, shoots guns on a space fighter looking thing, gets a hot chick, AND brings her back to the real word. You can’t fulfill any more wishes than that.

Tron (the franchise) was Way More Successful in the Film: While it’s understandable that a young Sam Flynn would be obsessed with Tron and have everything Tron is his room, I got the impression that the Tron franchise in the movie was way more successful than Tron in real life. It was like a wish fulfillment for Disney. This is even more evident by a brief appearance of a Black Hole poster. No kid in 1989 would have a Black Hole poster.

The Grid was Too Real: While the Grid (or Tron world) looked awesome, there were some details that made it a little too real. Why was their rain? Or clouds of exhaust?

Helmets: I love me some bad guys wearing helmets and looking all bad ass. Just look at my massive Star Wars and G.I. Joe collections that focus on the helmeted bad guys like Boba Fett. Tron has bad asses galore, but there is one downside to this. I had a hard time at points identifying the Darth Vader like character Rizler from the standard guards.

Olivia Wilde is Hot: I’m wild about Olivia Wilde. Get it!? Seriously, she’s awesome in this flick and I really liked her character.

It Falls Apart if You Think Too Much: Oh boy. Little people running around in a city inside your computer? It really stretches your suspension of disbelief, and then the idea that those computer people could enter our world? Well, I can see a lot of people not falling for it. Thankfully, I’ve seen crazier shit in sci-fi, so I was able to shut up and go along with it.

Amazing Music: Daft Punk really nailed it on this film, giving the perfect feeling for the film. Even better was an appearance by Journey in Flynn’s Arcade. I got full on nerd boner as soon as I realized they were playing the same Journey song you hear in the original film.

Young Jeff Bridges is… well… : So the young CGI Jeff Bridges works, except at certain times. Most notably when there are two of them on the screen. My buddy Reid from Light Within Light pointed out that he looks good until he opens his mouth. The mouth movements give it away a bit. Still, for the purposes of a film that’s almost all eye candy it works well enough.

No Rejuvenation for the Grid: Another thing that I thought would be cool was that if at the end the outlying area would light up and be all sparkly new again like in the original. I think that would have solidified the change from horrible, oppressive, and bleak regime to a new dawn sort of a thing.

Entering the World of Tron was a Bit of a Let-down: In the original Tron there’s this nifty, somewhat psychedelic entry into the world of Tron after Jeff Bridges is scanned by the laser.  I was looking forward to seeing what they would do with today’s technology plus the use of 3D. There was nothing. One minute your in the real world, the next you’re in Tron world. Lame.

Now that I’ve gotten the official Robot’s Pajamas thoughts out there, what did you think of Tron Legacy?

  • I enjoyed it alright. My fiancee liked it more than I did. I sort of dozed off for a couple minutes when they were on that sky transport.

    My big problem was there was lots of dialog and exposition, but it really didn’t explain anything. What exactly were the ISOs for instance? And how were they going to help Flynn with all sorts of scientific advances? Very vague.

    Also, I had a hard time figuring out what threat CLU really posed. As in, if he got into the real world, why would that be so bad?

    Finally, I never quite understood Sam’s motivation. Did he want to save his father? Understand him? Just escape? Lots of stuff happened to him but he was a fairly passive protagonist.

  • The 3D was nice, but…: I didn’t go see it in 3D, heck, I didn’t go see it in IMAX. I went to the little indie chain that somehow has stayed in business amongst all the CineDeLuxe, 3D, and IMAX theatres within a stone’s throw of the place. It’s a seedy little place, but it has its charm. I will admit, I haven’t seen a 3D film since I was at Disney World to see the Muppet 3D experience in Disney Hollywood Studios, but that’s an attraction — not a film. To me 3D is a cheap gimmick, sure if I go on MOM at Jordan’s Furniture then gimmie 3D roller coaster or whatever, but I’m not seven and although I have an inner child locked in my basement, as much as I love eye candy, I can do without the whole 3D craze.

    Tron (the franchise) was Way More Successful in the Film: I thought it was kinda cool how TRON in the movie-verse became wildly successful. I could just HEAR the nerds all gasming over the cool Tron stuff; toys, statues, etc. BTW, were those action figures vintage from the real life ’82 film, or were they made specifically as props for this movie?

    Also, I’m glad I’m not the only one who picked up on that Disney’s Black Hole poster. I thought it was a nice nod to the classic film, and to that era of Disney sci-fi films. I actually really like The Black Hole its cheesy effects (by today’s standards) were actually good for back then, the haunting overture, and the WTF ending… anyways, so, TRON!

    The Grid was Too Real:: I actually liked that aspect. I think the Grid is supposed to mirror reality and perhaps the clouds and rain were an effect of something, Clu’s reign or whatever. I don’t have the words to articulate my thoughts, but I liked that it felt more real.

    It Falls Apart if You Think Too Much: Agreed. I’m a pretty big sci-fi snob, but my mileage varies for suspension of disbelief. Some things work in one story but in others it’s got more holes than Swiss cheese. I was thinking the other day about how implausible it would be for an entire aircraft carrier full of digital army could enter the real world. Something can’t just appear out of nothing, like in Star Trek when they beam someone up; they have matter that they convert. Also, how did that flying love-boat keep afloat? Was it a hover craft of some sort? Assuming its not, let’s just say it did make it over into the real world; it would sink like a rock.

    Muzack: Whose ever idea it was to hire Daft Punk to write music for the film should be given a million bucks and a nice pat on the back. I’m always a firm believer that music MAKES a film. Imagine Star Wars without John Williams’ fanfare and Imperial march, but with a dated, cheesy sci-fi score? What about Jaws without the infamous, “Dun-dun”? So not only were we treated to a great movie score (Which I’ve had in full rotation in my car since I got it) but we were also treated to the first new Daft Punk material in a few year. Daft Punk is huge in a few of my social circles, so their involvement alone created a lot of buzz for the film.

    ’Lil Dude I pretty much went into TRON: Legacy like I do most films: blindly. I knew it was a sequel to Tron. I knew Jeff Bridges was in it. I knew young Jeff Bridges would be in it. I had no other “clu” about what to expect. I was impressed with the rendering. It was a little akward at times, but I was able to overlook that. They’ve come a long way, I was expecting some hack job, like how they “tried” to make Anthony Hopkins look “younger” in Red Dragon. I thought the way they shot the beginning for the initial reveal was brilliant though. They panned in and you can only see him from behind, leading you to think that maybe its just a stand-in or whatever, then we see him from the side with a little light, making you think its camera trickery, but then the big reveal when he turns around and looks directly at the camera, that was cool!

    Grid Gets a Face Lift: I was thinking that myself. Although, I didn’t know, or remember that’s what happened in the original, I was looking forward to seeing all the clouds disappear and seeing the grid as it should have been without Clu’s corruption.

    Through the Fargate: I didn’t think of this until I was scanning through Tron the other day. I thought the gateway or entrance or whatever you want to call it was pretty trippy, this was just kinda, “eh”.

  • I did love the visuals. Loved ’em. So today I decided I wanted to draw the bad guys. Reference for Clu wasn’t too hard, but for Rinzler? Kinda tricky. Most of it was really dark. I did a jumping pose I like but need to know where his lights and seems go, you know? So I went ahead and bought the Rinzler “deluxe” figure at Target during lunch for reference. Looks great, poses like shit. Guy can barely stand straight, let alone be posed well. And he can’t even hold his disks. I precariously balanced them on his hands. Bad action figure.

  • @Chris Yeah, the figures are pretty much shit. I have to see those drawings when you’re done!!!

    @PrfktTear Thanks for sharing!

  • From what I’ve seen of them, the Tron figures suck. Though, some people some people don’t see it that way, and believe that anyone who thinks differently is a whiney nit-picker.

    They were okay looking sculpts, sub-par articulation for their price-point, and gimmicky as hell. The 3.75″ scale figures look like ass. Was this line targeted towards kids or adult collectors? Can it just make up its mind? Movie toy lines just keep getting worse and worse… humbug.

  • The 3D was cool in a few parts, but for the most part I didn’t notice it that much. Overall I thought the movie was great even if everything didn’t make sense if you spent any time thinking about it.

    I was annoyed though that the original wasn’t out on DVD any more and I couldn’t go back and watch it.

  • Rumor has it that Disney didn’t want people to be turned off to the new movie by watching the old one. Because people are like that? I’ll sell you mine for 70 bucks. heh

  • After letting it sit, I’ve decided it’s mostly “meh.” Even though I get kind of sleepy listing the problems I had with the movie, at the end of the day I didn’t hate it. It was a solid mediocre movie. Agree with a lot of @PrfktTear’s points.

  • Hdawger

    Was supposed to see it last weekend, but got forced into watching Secritariat (yeah; the HORSE movie)((Wasn’t that bad though)) Hopefully I should be able to see Tron this weekend though.

  • A lot of stuff felt like first draft ideas that they never went back to fix. An example: So Quorra is hurt and since she’s a program, Flynn acts like repairing her will take all his programming skill. Then her injury turns into a hologram for him and the bad part of code/DNA is helpfully highlighted in yellow for Flynn to simply pull out. A child could have done that! What skillz.

  • XeQUae: I was wondering about that myself. This would have been the perfect opportunity to release a brand new special edition. I liked Legacy enough that I think I will pick it up on blu-ray when it hits shelves, so hopefully they’ll package the original film with it, or they could just use it as a special feature! ;-)

    Reido Bandito: It’s nice to be agreed with! I was just giving my thoughts on Vincent’s bullet points. I’ll settle for a solid mediocre movie any day. Any time I go into a movie I try to set my expectations as low as possible and hopefully I’ll be pleasantly surprise. Though even that doesn’t always help, I had the bar set so low for Transformers 2 that it couldn’t GET any lower, and I was still disappointed, and I’m pretty easy to please.

    Chris: Yeah, that part I kind of just glossed over in my mind. The only thing I can think is that sometimes something works well on paper and in your mind, but then when it comes down to filming it practically, it doesn’t translate as well.

  • I actually thought it was one of the better “blockbuster” mives I have seen in years, I never really had a problem with the computer folks traveling to our world (two way street I figure) and loved the plot twist with Rinzler. The figs were bad but could have been worse (Dark Knight rises anyone), they should have had a torso joint and a bit more articulation (Rinzler especially who had the agility of Spider-Man).

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