‘TRON: Legacy’ is the sequel to the 1982 film ‘TRON’ and stars Jeff Bridges, Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde. Hedlund plays Sam Flynn, son of Kevin Flynn, the original creator of the TRON game. After his father disappears, Sam finds himself thrust into the digital world that Kevin had created, now being ruled by C.L.U, a corrupted digital avatar of his father.
When this film came out, I saw it three times in the cinema: once in 2D, once in 3D and once in IMAX 3D. At the time of its release, I loved the film despite it getting mixed reviews. However, I hadn’t seen it since then. So, when I saw that ‘TRON: Legacy’ was on Disney+, I decided to give the film another watch and see whether it was a bad film disguised by the amazing 3D, the awesome soundtrack and the incredible visuals, or whether it is actually a good film.
And now that I’ve watched it 10 years after its initial release, I still really enjoy ‘TRON: Legacy’. However, I also accept that, while the story is interesting, it’s more the experience that the focus should be on. Garrett Hedlund and Jeff Bridge work well together and their father/son relationship is believable. Even Jeff Bridges is menacing as C.L.U, who is constantly thriving for his own image of perfection.
C.L.U was one of the earliest examples of Disney experimenting with de-aging technology, something that is now used in films such as ‘Star Wars: Rouge One’, ‘Captain Marvel’ and ‘Avengers: Endgame’. And, while it looks a little dated now, it’s not jarring to look at. This was a sign that Disney knew how to handle the technology.
The plot is a basic A-to-B type story; get Sam and Kevin Flynn out of the digital world that they’re trapped in before the portal they need to use to travel back closes. However, the journey is incredible to look at. The visuals still hold up today and make the digital world look sleek and stylish. Vehicles from the source material have been given a modern makeover and, while they look a lot more updated and colourful, they’re still recognizable. The visuals are a character here, and it’s obvious why it was an aspect of the film that was talked about the most.
Another aspect of the film that was highlighted was the score. Created by Daft Punk, it was a perfect companion to this gorgeous piece of work; it was nominated for 12 awards, including a Grammy Award for Best Score and it’s clear why. A soundtrack should either accompany the visuals or elevate it, and this soundtrack did both effortlessly.
The decision to have Daft Punk create it made sense; they were partly influenced by the original, so fit in perfectly. Even today, I still listen to the soundtrack.
Overall, ‘TRON: Legacy’ is not only a film, but an experience. It was the perfect film to watch in IMAX to really showcase what the technology could do. While the plot is something that’s been repeated countless times, it’s the visuals and the soundtrack that should be focused on here. And, in that regard, it’s an amazing piece of work. Now, if only TRON 3 would happen…
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