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Tron: Legacy Blu-ray Review

In Short
A super model movie, that is, really nice to look at but it's not too bright...

The original Tron film was known for its excellent special effects - for the time, being the first movie featuring computer generated-graphics in an era when Donkey Kong represented the state of the art - and a rather pedestrian storyline.  Thirty years later and the film finally has a sequel in Tron: Legacy, a film with excellent special effects and a rather pedestrian storyline.  Jeff Bridges reprises his role as Flynn, the computer programmer sucked into his computer in the original film,  He's stuck in a computer again in Tron: Legacy, with the one way back to the real world guarded by Clu.  Clu (played by Jeff Bridges as well, digitally de-aged by about thirty years) was once Flynn's computer program, created to help him build a virtual world within his computer.  Unfortunately, Clu went all megalomaniacal on Flynn and became the dictator of the world that they created.  Meanwhile, Flynn's son Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund) stumbles upon his dad's old computer lab and finds his way into this virtual world.  Eventually Sam finds his father and together they set out to take down Clu and make their way back to the real world.

The story in Tron: Legacy exists for a singular purpose, and that purpose is to serve as the barest of excuses to dazzle the viewer with non-stop computer-generated special effects.  The film is a collection of sequences that all look really cool, but that don't make a lick of sense.  In fact, I got the feeling that the people behind the film realized that their audience wouldn't harbor any illusions about that, and so didn't even pretend to try to offer any explanation of what's supposed to be going on and why.  It's best to try and turn off your brain and just enjoy all of the eye candy lest it ruin things for you.  Otherwise it will constantly pepper you with questions such as:  How come the only things computer programs seem to do is watch gladiatorial games and hang out in clubs drinking alcohol?  Is that why Windows is so slow?  Why does it rain inside of a computer?  And just where did the Flynns get those green beans that they dine on in one scene?  Shut up, brain!  Look at the pretty lights... ah ... that's better.

Ah, but the look of the film, well, it's just really, really cool.  The skin-tight suits piped with glowing lines are cool, doubly so because apparently something like 95% of computer programs are sexy, the cyber city (which owes more than a little of its inspirations to Blade Runner's Los Angeles) is cool, and the light-cycles are oh so uber-cool.  The light disc fights are cool, Flynn's cyber home is cool, and even the Daft Punk driven sound track is cool  I'm sure you're beginning to get the idea.  The set and costume designers and the special effects team did a fantastic job here, and if only a tenth of their effort had been put into the script Tron: Legacy might have been able to join the ranks of the Sci-Fi elite.  Alas, this one is all cover and no book.

The version reviewed was the Five-Disc Combo version, and this package gives you the film on three different disc formats, Blu-ray, 3D Blu-ray, and DVD.  You'll want to enjoy it at home in either of the Blu-ray versions and save the DVD for the car because the picture and sound quality are excellent.  Disney always does a great job with sound levels, so action sequences don't blow out your eardrums and it doesn't sound like all of the characters are whispering to each other.  The other two discs give you a digital copy of the film for your computer or iPhone and a copy of the original Tron.  You don't really need to know what happened in the original film to follow what's going on in Legacy and the special effects are almost laughable by today's standards, but it's nice to have the original computer-generated movie included in the set.  There's also about a half dozen special features that give you a look at what went into the making of the film.  Disney's special features are usually well-produced and that's the case here as well.

There are a lot of things that I like about this release of Tron: Legacy, but unfortunately story is not one of them.  Tron: Legacy is pretty, but it sure is dumb.

Final Rating:

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Transmitted: 3/19/2018 6:22:16 PM