The movie opens in the mid 1980s with a rather tastefully done CGI Kevin Flynn, played by Jeff Bridges, talking to his son, Sam. Kevin is telling Sam about the wonderful world he has created and the characters that dwell inside of it, and how someday he will take him there. That night is the last night Sam sees his father.
Fast forward to all these years later and circumstances have led Sam to Flynn’s arcade, where he stumbles upon his father’s old office, and the adventure begins again.
Sam is whisked into the land of The Grid, the digital utopia that Kevin Flynn had set out to create, but a violent corruption has divided the denizens of this land, and their protector and virtuous paradigm, Tron, is nowhere to be found.
The story flows at a very nice pace and never, to me, felt boring or like it was being drawn out. The progression of some characters is very predictable and some of the plot twists are revealed to the keener eyes in the audience very prematurely, but this is a Disney film, remember, and not all family’s have razor-sharp skills at picking up hints.
I really enjoyed the characters of this film as they covered all the bases, the dark and sinister antagonist, the maniacal evil genious behind the plan, the prodigious ally of the hero, and Jeff Bridges playing a role borderline Jedi was pretty freaking cool. At times the movie did go into cheesie mode as a few times Sam Flynn felt more like he was trying out for the next Batman movie than being an everyday guy, but a little cheese in a Disney movie has to be expected.
Ultimately the story played out very well, had some solid foundation, very few useless side plots and in the end all came together wonderfully in a fully resolved ending; I hate the trend of never-ending cliff-hanger endings, so Disney’s recent trend of having movies end at the end has been very nice this year.
We’ll get this aside now: it’s a lot harder to be cutting-edge innovative in the land of CGI in 2010 than it was in 1982, Disney knows this and opted to play it safe. The Grid is still a mesmerizing digital world that is wondrous to behold in all of its dark beauty, but I can see a lot of critics will complain that nothing done here has never been seen before.
That is in no way a signal that the visuals are bad, it’s quite the opposite. Tron Legacy still features beautifully manipulated computer effects in the world and the characters, just don’t go in expecting something as ground-breaking as what we received 28 years ago.
I know it’s impossible to not mention it: Daft Punk does the original score for this movie and a very large majority of the soundtrack (I think all but two songs in the entire movie were Daft Punk tunes) AND they even make a very nice cameo in the film that stretches out for quite a bit longer than most comical cameos.
But the music, yeah, it’s awesome. It had elements of many amazing movie themes we know and love, with little pieces borrowed from Alien and my beloved Terminator theme song all wrapped up into a modern day electronica feel that fit the scenes perfectly. I already have the soundtrack downloading on my iTunes as I type this, so I hope that’s an indicator of how good the music was.
What I Liked
Solid storyline, defined characters, perfect music and a pace that made the story fun to be a part of made this movie an extremely enjoyable movie outing for me.
What I Would Have Changed
The movie did suffer from a few really cheesie moments, especially at the beginning during a break-and-enter scene that went on for far too long and ultimately felt like it could have been cut down drastically and still had the same impact on the story.
A worthy successor of the original masterpiece. Is it as good as the original? I would have to say no, but it is still a very enjoyable movie. It’s like a nice blend of Terminator, Star Wars and other dearly beloved sci-fi franchises, I hope this movie will lure younger audiences back to the original film so that they can appreciate the ground-breaking innovations that the original did for cinematography today. Go check it out whether you’ve seen the original movie or not, you’ll be in for a very wild ride, now if you’ll excuse me I have some Daft Punk to play very, very loudly.