Tron: Legacy - Review


First things first, i didn't see the first Tron movie, but as far as i have heard, it is said that you could watch Tron Legacy without any knowledge about the first movie. And suprisingly that's true. Well, i recently watched this highly anticipated sequel. While i was not really hyped about this flick, i have to say that the trailers made me pretty curious about the movie and especially the action scenes. So how does Tron Legacy hold up?



The plot: Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund), the tech-savvy 27-year-old son of Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges), looks into his father's disappearance and finds himself pulled into the same world of fierce programs and gladiatorial games where his father has been living for 20 years. Along with Kevin's loyal confidant, father and son embark on a life-and-death journey across a visually-stunning cyber universe that has become far more advanced and exceedingly dangerous.

The movie's beginning seems very promising, but already during the first couple of minutes you encounter one of the movie's biggest problems: The awful, totally crappy looking de-aging effect of Jeff Bridges. In the movie you encounter the young Jeff Brdiges who looks so godawfully fake it's almost embarassing. After a while you get along with it but that never means that the effect gets any better. When i first saw young Jeff Bridges in the trailers, i thought it was supposed to look fake because the program Clu tries to immitate its creators looks and so it's supposed to look artificial. That's the only way how director Joseph Kosinski could have saved this embarassingly bad CGI effect...well at least he could have explained its crappyness.
But anyway, the movie throws you right into the action. First we get to see a cool heist style sequence with Sam Flynn breaking into his own corporation's building (?? yeah) but only half an hour into the movie and Sam is already going into the Grid, the cyberspace world created by his father. Obviously the entire world had to be CGI but it's designed impressively well, and the effects, as CG as they are, are pretty impressive (EXCEPT YOUNG JEFF BRIDGES!). Bonus points for the cool looking world.
But i had a problem with Sam being so cool with his situation of being stuck in a cyberworld. I would fuckin freak out if i was him. But he is more like "hm...cool. let's fight.". The whole world is inhabited by various programs, with Clu being the ultimate leader program and ruler of the Grid. But after the first minutes you start to feel like somethings wrong: The programs behave waaaaay to human. They are freakin programs! They should all talk like the terminator or agent smith from the matrix. But in this world every program walking along seems to be emotional in some unexplained way and the number of programs that have absolutely NO USE at all is incredible. But i will go into detail about this later. Although i have to admit that some of the programs have pretty cool robotic voices which match perfectly.
But honestly, you don't go watch this movie because of the characters or the story, but for the effects and the action. "Tron Legacy" does a good job in this department. It blends kung-fu style fights with the tron world pretty well, making the action scenes easily the highpoints of the movie. Other than cool effects and fights, "Tron Legacy" has little to offer. It gets obvious that the movie is trying to make itself bigger and smarter than it actually is. The movie tries to be smart and innovative but doesn't succeed because it lacks the necessary depth and quality of other movies like "Matrix" etc.. It would all be ok if the movie wouldn't take itself too seriously but that's what it tries. It tries to be a serious sci-fi action movie but with so many plot holes, silly moments and a crappy looking young Jeff Bridges effect, this flick is doomed to fail.

But hey at least you got nice action, a killer soundtrack (awesome soundtrack by Daft Punk) and you get to see Olivia Wilde in a tight cyber suit...HOT!

The acting is pretty decent, with Garrett Hedlund giving you a likeable lead protagonist, and decent performances from Bridges and Olivia Wilde. But unfortunately there also is Michael Sheen as Castor, who managed to almost completely destroy any of the movie's credibility with his performance.

But now let's get a bit into detail. Here are the things that annoyed me the most about "Tron Legacy":


                

                       !!!SPOILERS!!!

- In on scene you get to see that Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) brought books into the grid so he and his program Quora can read them. How did he bring books into the grid????

- In on scene we see Bridges, Sam and Quora eat and drink. Why? I thought they were in a cyberspace world do you really have to drink in such a place. Is it like in "Matrix" that it's not real and just for satisfaction? But if it's like that, then why do other programs eat and drink too, like in the nightclub???

- Why are all the programs so human and so emotional?? They are programs. They should behave like the terminator or just you know,...like a machine!!! They are freakin machines, they are artificial! Why are they devilishly smiling when something goes right?? The movie would be far better if the programs would behave robotic and only some of them would encounter something like emotions. They all should have better talked like HAL from "2001: A Space Odyssey".

- Why is Clu so emotional? I understand that he is the evil mastermind but he is also a program!! He should be evil but not as emotional as he is in the movie. He behaves like a bond villain throughout the entire flick. He should be the HAL 9000 of the Grid!

- An audience of programs? Really? What's their purpose? Cheering on the fighters in the arena???

- Fireworks inside the grid? Just.....why?!

- Why is the grid split up into a part which is like a cyberspace world and the other part being some rough apocalyptic terrain?

- Why is there constant stormy black weather like the real world in "Matrix"? In "Matrix" it was explained why, but in "Tron Legacy" it should have better been just black sky.

- How exactly do you die inside the grid? Is it like your ghost dies in the "Matrix"? EXPLAIN MOVIE IF YOU WANT TO BE TAKEN SERIOUSLY!!

- How exactly did Clu plan that Sam would ACCIDENTLY enter the grid? At one point in the movie, Jeff Bridges says that Clu had it all set up. HOW!? How can you set up a coincidence?!

- Why the fuck is there a nightclub for programs?! Do programs wanna have fun? WHY!? They are fucking programs. They are like machines!!

- Castor: That stupid useless idiotic program with an english accent. Totally useless character/program that does so much damage to the movie it's incredible! THIS is easily the Jar Jar Binks of the movie!

- Why is entering the portal such a big problem for Clu? At the end you can see that the portal seems to have been opened the entire time...JUST FUCKIN WALK THROUGH IT!!

- The final showdown in which Jeff Bridges freakin ABSORBS Clu and they both explode...WTF?! WHAT JUST HAPPENED!? HOW!? WHY!? EXPLAIN!!!

- How exactly did Clu plan to materialize in the real world?!

- And finally: How the fuck did Quora, a program, materialize in the real world into a biological human being?!






                      !!!END OF SPOILERS!!!





All in all, you can see that director Joseph Kosinski tried to do to the "Tron" franchise, what J.J.Abrams did to the "Star Trek" franchise in 2009. Unfortunately "Tron Legacy" tries to be innovative, cool and action-packed but ultimately fails. Although "Tron Legacy" has a totally different feel than the first "Tron", it feels like a step into the wrong direction. The design and art style is superb but the movie lacks some necessary polish.
"Tron Legacy" is a silly movie, that only delivers good action scenes, good CGI (except young Jeff Bridges) and Olivia Wilde in a tight suit. It has way to many plot holes and stupid moments to be anything more than this. I didn't see this flick in 3D, but i doubt that the 3D would change anything essential. And let me tell you, if the biggest star of your movie is the soundtrack, then you really have to worry. So if those couple of pros outweigh the cons for you, then go see it. But really don't expect anything than a stupid CGI flick from "Tron Legacy".


Final Verdict: 3 out of 10

 

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