One of the most anticipated sequels since Weekend at Bernie's II, Tron: Legacy sets out to induce more boners than ever before with tighter costumes, better music, and everything else saturated with more awesome ... in 3D!
What's that? A plot? Why yes, it turns out Tron: Legacy does actually have a plot. The film is set twenty years after Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges Mark-1) has disappeared off the face of the earth after claiming to have "changed everything". His son Sam tries to track him down only to find that he has been in The Grid the whole time and has become a zen-like, albeit confused old dude.
Poor, confused old dude.
But you see Clu (Jeff Bridges Mark-2), who is an alter-ego program and Flynn's digitizered self, is power grabbing while the getting is good. So it's up to Sam to try and save his father and stop Clu.
You are still paying attention to the plot, yes?
Cue the story that can only be achieved through some kick-ass action set pieces and all kinds of crazy digital shenanigans. There are gladiatorial-style bouts with updated frisbees of death coming at you at all sorts of angles, even bouncing off your 3D glasses. There are some nice homages to the original movie though, with certain character names, music, and inanimate cameos. It does actually feel like it is set in the original Tron's universe, because after all, one of the main focus points of the movie (aside from the tight costumes) is just how much technology has advanced.
Let's just say, the two have similar themes.
Of course, everything looks much slicker in Tron: Legacy, not just the costumes. A lot less Taiwanese hand painters and a lot more CGI gets you cooler looking Recognizers and even more impressive Light Cycle battles. There is everything from updated and almost grisly derezzing to walking sticks that shoot lasers.
But the budget could only stretch so far.
As soon as Sam is warped into The Grid, so are we, if by The Grid you mean everything becomes 3D. No time is wasted before he's in the thick of it derezzin' bitches all over the shop, with not even so much as a montage as to how he suddenly became such a badass. The effects are on display here by the bucket load, but you can still tell the filmmakers have tried to physically recreate as much of what they can in as real an environment as possible, including detailed (and tight) costumes, and extensive real-world sets.
But on a par with, if not more so than the special effects, is another huge draw card for many people, and something that had nothing to do with the original. When the original Tron was hitting theatres, Daft Punk were still picking their noses and watching Les Schtroumpfs.
My how they've grown.
When the director Joseph Kosinski was asked why he chose the French electronifunksters he retorted "Why the hell not?" and you can't argue with that. Seriously, if you had a choice between Journey, who contributed to the first movie, and Daft Punk, it wouldn't take you very long to decide.
About the time it takes your heart to skip a beat.
When the trailer was released, Daft Punk's track "Derezzed" featured heavily and had people excited. The soundtrack came out a few weeks before the movie was released, and it brought many of both electronica fans and Tron geeks to their knees with delight.
Or at least one Tron guy to his right knee with mild alarm.
The music, like the visuals, is chock-full of effects and the kind of stadium-filling beats you'd expect from the band that likes to construct an almost full scale pyramid wherever they play. Couple that with Joseph Trapanese's orchestrations and you end up getting one hell of a soundtrack. In an attempt to even induce pre-moviegoing boners, Daft Punk managed to employ the services of Legacy's leading lady Olivia Wilde for the video to "Derezzed".
Disappointingly loose costumes, however.
So if it's more stuff you like crammed onto the screen but not rammed down your throat, then Tron: Legacy is a good bet. Speaking of stuff ...
Now, we all know everyone fantasises about being as cool as a character from the movies. There are plenty of people that still hang about in their own Neo jacket and that's fine. Sometimes however, movie tie-ins and merchandising can go just that little bit too far.
They see us Tronin'. They hatin'.
Disney released the merch for Tron: Legacy a good couple of months before it came out, and we can only assume they did so in order that people would go watch the movie dressed as Tron bikers wearing their light cycle cuff links having recharged their iPhone on their Tron audio dock.
As to what the fuck this is, we have no clue.
In fact, it began to get a little strange at one point with the movie tie-ins when two designers decided to build their own Tron-inspired suite in a Swedish ice hotel with blue light circuitry and nothing more than an unhealthy obsession for Tron to spur them on.
Unhealthy obsession? Yes. Still cool? Also yes.
Then it went from strange to somewhat disturbing when Disney decided to get in on the action and sexify Mickey and Minnie in their own Tron-inspired getup. A couple of commissioned artworks were made by various artists, and everyone looked at the one of Minnie, there was an uncomfortable silence, and nothing more was said.
As ever, this is just as likely to be Mickey as it is Minnie.
There was so much Tron shit actually made that you could probably open up your own store and stock it with nothing but Tron jewellery and Tron Xbox controllers. Although we're pretty sure that somewhere, Disney has probably already done just that.
Just follow the light.
So after all is said and done, if we weigh up the pros and cons of the movie itself, we can come to only one conclusion ...
Tron: Legacy has got some tight-ass costumes.