In 1982, a movie named Tron hit the screen. Tron was an adventure set in a digital world constructed with neon and day-glo colors inside a computer system controlled by the Master Control Program (MCP). Tron starred Jeff Bridges (Kevin Flynn / Clu – Codified Likeness Utility), Bruce Boxleitner (Alan Bradley / Tron), Cindy Morgan (Lora / Yori), Peter Jurasik (Crom) and David Warner (Ed Dillinger / Sark / MCP). Gladiator games ruled the digital frontier. Programs fought for survival in disc ring combat, light cycle combat and other such now-iconic modes of warfare on the Grid. The MCP’s rule of the Grid was absolute in this digital world. In an attempt to thwart Flynn’s interference from the outside world, MCP used cutting-edge technology to digitally store Flynn inside the computer world which it controls. Three adventurers – one human (Flynn), two digital (Tron and Yori) – set out to wrestle control from the MCP and get Flynn back to the real world. There’s only one place this can happen – the uplink tower at the heart of the MCP’s citadel. Thus, our adventure began.
Nearly thirty years later, we revisit the world of Tron in Tron: Legacy starring Jeff Bridges (Kevin Flynn / Clu), Garrett Hedlund (Sam Flynn, Kevin’s son), Bruce Boxleitner (Alan Bradely / Tron) and introducing Olivia Wilde (Quorra) to the story. Lured to the old arcade shop where his Dad used to work by Clu, Sam begrudgingly seeks to find out what may have happened to his estranged father – a father nearly twenty years absent – seeking the answer to one question: why did you abandon me? Finding a system clock running with over twenty years of run-time on it, Sam – like his father – is transported into Grid where he now faces both foes old and new – as well as an upgraded Grid.
With the MCP gone, the Grid has come under complete domination of Clu – Kevin Flynn’s surrogate program who’s sole purpose was to create a perfect environment. Clu seeks to eradicate anything he deems not “perfect”. Kevin Flynn – part of this imperfection himself – manages to escape Clu’s purge into exile to the rugged undeveloped part of the Grid. In his absence, Clu assumes complete control. Once again, gladitorial games are afoot on the Gaming Grid. Once again, programs are forced into combat against one another in a game of digital survival.
Enter one Sam Flynn.
Sam is immedately thrust into the gladitorial games upon being digitally downloaded by Clu while in his father’s old workshop. Coming to his rescue is Olivia Wilde (Quorra) complete with cool all-terrain car, martial artist, weapons and vehicle expert and all-around good-looking gal. Along the way, Sam meets colorful characters such as Castor / Zuse, Sirens of exquisite beauty and grace, and a Terminator-style killing machine known as Rinzler. Sam reunites with his father only to realize that he’s a pawn in Clu’s bigger game. The story moves to its logical conclusion with Sam, Quorra and Kevin reaching the uplink tower all the while being doggedly pursued by Rinzler and Clu’s minions. It’s a straight-line plot. There are no fancy twists and turns. No unexpected revelations. Yet, Tron: Legacy accomplishes exactly what it set out to do: tell another piece of the Tron story in good cinematic fashion – and tell it well.
Tron: Legacy‘s punctuated by such fabulous performances by the likes of Michael Sheen (Castor / Zuse) in his role as the End of Line bar owner; kick-ass techno music by Daft Punk, some seriously sick combat sequences and stunning visual effects throughout. Beau Garrett, Serinda Swan, Yaya DeCosta, and Elizabeth Mathis add a sense of the exotic as our Sirens in the movie. Ring combat and light-cycle combat along with other familiar components lend a continuity to both films. In addition, we get to see new vehicles and dazzling ground and aerial combat sequences in Tron: Legacy. All of these elements work together to bring another chapter in the Tron universe right to your doorstep live and in technocolor. Whether you see this in 2D or 3D, you’ll want to see it on the big screen – or if you have one at home, a big screen of your own should you choose to wait.
From all of us, to all of you: Well done boys and girls. Well done, indeed.