Tron Legacy IMAX 3D

A video game designer is accidentally sucked into and trapped in his own video game and thought dead for years until a cryptic message sent to his teenage son with instructions, opens the possibility that his father may still be alive and living inside the game. The son discovers a living virtual world when he steps inside the game that his father created.

This is a great visual treat for anyone who has ever wished they could live inside their favorite video game. Tron Legacy was not a great movie, but it was a great spectacle. If you saw it in IMAX and 3D as I did, it was an amazing sensory experience of light and sound which made you feel fully immersed.
 
One thing I noticed about Tron Legacy is how much some of the story elements reminded me of Star Wars. Being a lifelong Star Wars fan I didn’t mind this so much except that Star Wars did it so much better and it is now a 34 year old movie that is still being copied but not bettered. Star Wars just had so much more going for it that this movie didn’t. Some of the elements that Tron Legacy borrowed from Star Wars are as follows.

  • The father son relationship, with the son redeeming the father’s sins in the end. 
  • The apprentice who turns against the master or teacher and becomes evil in pursuit of order/perfection. Clu in his pursuit of perfection saw his master as being part of the imperfection he is charged with eradicating. Vader also seeks to restore order in the Galaxy and eventually views the Republic and the Jedi Knights as being the obstacle to that order. He must now join with the Emperor to eliminate the Jedi and restore the order that the Emperor promised him if he joined the Dark Side. 
  • The stealing of secret plans that hold the key to power and have potential for miss use by evil apprentice.
  • The color scheme of red for bad guys and light blue for good guys when using flying disc weapon similar to the light sabers in Star Wars. 
  • The vulnerable girl who is the last of her kind after her people are destroyed by the evil apprentice, similar to princess Leia who’s planet was destroyed by the Empire. 
  • The video game quality of the action scenes and flying scenes with the hero fending off the bad guys, who are in pursuit after escaping their stronghold, with a laser turret mounted on the back of a flying vehicle.  
  • The father in this case is also part Yoda and Obi-wan Kenobi with an interest in Zen and meditation philosophy. He also has special powers as the creator of a digital world in which he is trapped. 
  • The creation of an invasion army of programs is similar to the creation of the Droid army in The Phantom Menace, and the Clone army in Attack of the Clones.

Anyone who knows the Star Wars films as intimately as I do will immediately recognize these story elements from the Star Wars saga.

But Tron Legacy has some excellent visual flare of its own, especially during the motorcycle racing sequence on the grid with multiple levels that allow for more suspenseful and visually interesting racing action. 

Tron Legacy also has a beautiful futuristic set and vehicle design with glowing stripes that gives it a clean and sleek feel which I like. Unfortunately there is not much contrast in the design, nothing to balance it with a rougher, more organic look except during the beginning of the film which is set in a city of the 80s. But this is also a little too sleek for that time period.

Other things that caught my eye was the digital version of a younger Jeff Bridges who was a little off putting at first as you could tell he was a digital creation although it was extremely realistic. There was just something about the movement of his mouth that gave it away.

The costumes and make up were also very cool and I noticed some influence of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) in the Jeff Bridges hide out apartment that looked very similar to the room where the astronaut finds himself after his psychedelic ride through space with antique furniture and lighting coming from underneath the floor and ceiling.

The ending being quite similar to the ending of Lost in Space (1998), emotionally and visually, it was quite derivative but overall a fun light and sound show.

JP

1 comment:

Schwab said...

I mostly agree with your assessment. it was all eye candy, but that's what I liked about it. Sure, the plot was a little cliched, but it's the special effects that brought it in and made it worth watching.
-your nephew :)