Greetings Program: Tron

Tron theatrical poster

We live in an age where computer generated graphics are so common place that anyone with a flash program can make their own little short. It’s sort of hard to think that it was really only about 30 years ago that computer graphics were able to represent something ‘real’ on screen. And this is where Tron comes in.

Tron is, somewhat surprisingly, a Walt Disney Company offering. And in 1982, it didn’t do so well at the box office. The movie follows Kevin Flynn, a brilliant computer programmer who has been let go from his job after his video-game programs were stolen, on his quest to … prove his video-game programs were stolen. During this quest, he is sucked into the digital world that exists inside computers – the Grid – and must battle against the evil Master Control Program with the help of Tron to free the cyber realm before he can have hope of returning home.

Okay, so the plot is really incredibly cheesy, and I’ll admit the acting is a bit of the same as well. But you know us, Wanderers, we don’t recommend you check anything out unless one of us has done it already. In this particular case? Yeah, I’ve checked out Tron, and it’s ridiculously fun. Yes, it is cheesy, but it’s a lot of fun with it. While some of the graphics look horribly outdated, a good number remain visually stunning, and deeply enjoyable to look at. It’s highly likely you know of the Light Cycles, even if you never knew the source material.

Here’s the thing. Tron wasn’t a success at the box office on its release. What it was, however, was a cult success, and over the years that had built and grown. Amongst the fans of the movie, you can count John Lasseter, who stated during “Making of Tron” that without the movie, “there would be no Toy Story.” Cult success can be important, especially for certain franchises.

And yes, it’s a franchise.

Tron: Legacy

In 2010, there was an official movie sequel, Tron: Legacy. The second movie follows on from the events of the first. It’s been 27 years on since the events of the first movie, and Kevin Flynn – who had taken control of Encom at the end of the original – has been missing for 20 of those years. Enter Sam Flynn, the brilliant slacker son, who finds himself pulled into the digital world, to help save it once again. Honestly, those Flynns.

The sequel has many of the things that the original didn’t have, most notable being the existence of an actual budget. As in, serious money. The original was made – for a movie – on the cheap, and it’s not exactly lying to say that it’s noticeable. But, again, it’s fun, and you know what Wanderers, we all need a little bit more fun in our lives.

So go, check out Tron and its sequel, Tron: Legacy. Have fun. And remember, Wanderers…

Flynn Lives.

Z. McAspurren (Fights for the users.)

Tron and Tron: Legacy are both available on DVD from Amazon.

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