Wednesday, February 27, 2008



Year: 1982
Director: Steven Lisberger
Starring: Jeff Bridges, Bruce Boxleitner, David Warner, Cindy Morgan, Barnard Hughes
Distributor: Buena Vista Pictures
MPAA: Rated PG

TRON was released in 1982 and was praised by its amazing computer graphic visuals. The movie that is now almost 27 years old is almost in every ones collection. The film at the time of its release had grossed an estimated $33 million on a $17 million budget. While TRON wasn't necessarily a box office hit was still considered revolutionary in terms of how far technology can go. I had never seen TRON before so this was going to be my first time. After seeing so many spoofs about it in shows like Family Guy and The Simpsons, I just had to see what this movie was really about.

Plot Outline:
A talented computer programmer named Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) wrote a few games, but before he makes his programs public another programmer named Dillenger (David Warner) steals his programs and takes credit. Dillenger, who is now a top boss, inserts a program he wrote called Main Control. Now Flynn is not happy for having his programs stolen by Dillenger and losing his job so he starts doing some hacking of his own. Unfortunately the Main Control program is now very powerful from stealing information from all other programs and won't let Flynn into the system, also Main Control is getting very irritated with Flynn's seemingly non stop hacking. One programmer named Alan Bradley (Bruce Boxleitner) makes a program called Tron which is a security to destroy Master Control and another programmer named Lora (Cindy Morgan) makes one called Yori which is designed to turn Matter into data. Master Control had enough of Flynn so uses Yori on him thus turning him into data and sending him inside a computer.

The story of TRON is kind of a love it or hate it type of story. The concept of it doesn't seem original in today's world, but at the time of its release, it was pretty cool to go inside a computer. The plot lenders off as the rest of the movie doesn't feel epic or anything. I couldn't really follow what was going on for the first 30 minutes because the plot inst told in a way most people would understand. The story is adventures in a way and is pretty entertaining for the most part. The idea of living people inside computers just doesn't make for a great story, but I guess I should stay in the fantasy realm of the film and go with whats their. Besides the pretty visuals, TRON doesn't offer much. Theirs hardly any tension or suspense that doesn't surprise the audience, but it is cool to be inside a computer so it deserves credit for that. TRON may have been a great film to watch back when it was released, but in today's world, this ain't going to hold up.

The cast of TRON is pretty good. Jeff Bridges plays as Kevin Flynn and hes pretty energetic in his role. While I wouldn't say this is his best performance he has ever given, but it is an enjoyable one. Bruce Boxleitner plays as Alan Bradley and hes pretty good in his role. He gives an OK performance, but nothing groundbreaking. We also get David Warner playing as Ed Dillinger and he give a great performance. This is probably his best work I have seen so far of him. Ill be interested to see him in more roles this big. Cindy Morgan plays as Lora and shes pretty good. I liked her character and her performance even though she doesn't get alot of screen time like Bridges's character Flynn.

The visual effects for TRON are wonderful. When the film first released, it was widely known that this movie had one of if not the best visuals of its time, but now 26 years later, the visuals don't quite hold up well. TRON features computer graphic visuals that are cool to watch. This movie today looks pretty good with alot of colors really popping out, but it doesn't hold a candle to some of Disney's other films. The movie also doesn't have alot of detail present with alot of flesh tones looking pale. TRON also has some grain here and their that is somewhat problematic, but also something the director probably intended to have. For the most part, TRON looks absolutely stunning with alot of colors and computer generated textures just looking great. This movie would look pretty intense if the folks at Disney remastered it for a Blu Ray High Def release.

The music in TRON is pretty good. The soundtrack is composed by Wendy Carlos who also composed the music for the 1980 release of The Shining. The music is pretty dull at first, but gets better as the movie goes by. While I couldn't tell if TRON had its very own score, but it did feature some pretty good techno music that went well with what was going on the screen. Bass is also good with many moments having thunderous rumbles that really give this film some excitement. Dialogue is pretty clear although it isn't crisp enough because their are some scenes that the voices of the characters seem alittle fluffy. Overall, I though the music was pretty good, but nothing too special.

TRON is an adventurous ride that seems to go anywhere expect reality. The story is decent although it doesn't have any suspenseful moments that could have really given this film some legs to work with. The cast is pretty good with everyone giving pretty good performances. The visual effects at the time of its release was amazing, but it falls short of almost anything that is released in today's world. The soundtrack is enjoyable with alot of scenes getting good bass treatment. I didn't really enjoy TRON much because I thought the story wasn't as cleaver enough. While their are some people out their that might love this film to death, but their are also some that just plain hate it. I'm mostly in the middle because seeing the inside of a computer come to life is pretty cool to watch even though its interesting the first time only.

Grade: C-

1 comment:

Omair said...

yeah, I pretty much felt the same way. This movie was way better back in the day, but now its gotten alot old. Good review though