Friday, December 24, 2010

1982 - TRON, still looks pretty good from a visual standpoint

Ace computer hacker Jeff Bridges gets sucked into the Internet or a computer or a computer program or something and has to do battle with the evil "Master Control Program."  He gets help from a program called Tron.

Tron was Disney's attempt to break out of their middle of the road Kurt Russel type comedies and lackluster animation efforts like The Great Mouse Detective and Oliver and Me.  Disney hired writer/director Steve Lisberger and had a lot of input into the story.  As usual with a ground breaking film coming out of the Disney studios, they didn't have the courage to make something really original, the same problem that plagued Fantasia.  The story Tron finally ended up with was kind of dumb and didn't make sense in certain parts.

The actors with the exception of Jeff Bridges and maybe David Warner were a pretty colorless bunch.  Bridges had to carry the film but for some odd reason he pretty much checks out of the final battle with the evil "Master Control Program."  The uninteresting Tron, played by the uninteresting actor Bruce Boxleitner gets the final confrontation scene. 

Tron was considered one of the first computer generated films, but it has a lot more traditional animation in in than computer animation.  However these techniques do help give it a unique look.  That ends up being the best thing about Tron, the unique visual look of the computer world.  The light cycle chase still looks pretty cool, and the spaceships and tanks have interesting minimalist designs that are based on the look of old style computer games. 

Which brings us to 2010 and Tron Legacy...

96 minutes.

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