PaulRom Reviews: TRON: Legacy
The sequel to the 80's classic has received hit and miss reviews since its opening in theaters last December. Does it deserve the mixed reception, or is it even better than the original? Hit the jump for my spoiler-free take...
For those who don't know, yes I have seen the original TRON film a while back, but I never really was a fan (due to the mediocre special effects...even though they weren't bad for the early 80's). However, I was interested in its sequel, TRON: Legacy, from the beginning (due to the promising special effects), but I didn't really know what to think after its mediocre reviews. I finally watched it last night, and I'll have to admit...it's even better than I expected.
TRON: Legacy picks up about 20 years after the original. Kevin Flynn (played by Jeff Bridges) has mysteriously disappeared after being CEO of ENCOM International. His son, Sam (Garett Hedlund), investigates the disappearance, and after entering the arcade in hopes of finding some clues, he was suddenly integrated into the TRON world. There, Sam engages in disk battles and light cycle matches before meeting Quora (Olivia Wilde), who takes him to his long lost father. The adventures that ensue are rather intense to the very end.
First off, the special effects are down-right jaw dropping. It's amazing how technology has progressed through the years, and how it will continue to do so. There was barely a moment where I lost interest, because the effects were done to perfection.
The casting is solid as well. Jeff Bridges is perfect as the elder Flynn, and his performance in Legacy alone made him go high on my list of favorite actors. The effects used on him portraying the younger Flynn-clone Clu is also incredible, and it makes me wonder why it hasn't been used in many other movies as of yet. Garett Hedlund is also excellent as the younger Flynn, depicting the much-needed personality and intensity. Olivia Wilde is equally good as Quorra, while Michael Sheen is seemingly out of place within the TRON world. Daft Punk (who orchestrated the excellent soundtrack) has a brief cameo as well, so for those who haven't seen it, keep a sharp eye out.
Other than feeling a bit long at times, TRON: Legacy's only flaw is its lack of a clearer story. The script allows plenty of time for the main characters to breathe, but simultaneously doesn't allow quite as much character development as it should. It's a similar problem that has affected films like Speed Racer, GI Joe: The Rise Of Cobra, and even the Transformers movies, when the special effects supersede the story.
Still, when all is said and done, TRON: Legacy is a complete improvement on what came before it (as expected, of course). From detailed effects to solid casting, this is a film that I would recommend to many (especially if you're looking for a film to turn your brain off for). I have high hopes for TRON 3 (should it go forward), but for now, we have Legacy, possibly one of the best films from last year.
I rate TRON: Legacy 4.5 out of 5 stars.
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