Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Thinking Man's Legacy...


There is a lot of discussion out there about "Tron Legacy's"story or lack thereof...

I read this article by Massawyrm over at Ain't It Cool News the other day and thought it was an insightful response to critics of the film. Love it, like it or hate it, the man has some very thoughtful analysis of the film that many should read.

And then maybe go watch it to see what you've missed out on the Grid...

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

How about rather than posting links to other sites like it's Facebook you post something intelligent and insightful of your own?

Anonymous said...

thank you for the link to the article. i have seen the movie twice and never understood what the criticism was about the story. to say that the authors analysis of Legacy form this author is very close to what i took from the movie the first time i saw it. My hopes are still high that the movie box office continues steady and that Burbank goes ahead with the possible TRON attraction that might possibly end the life of the dreadful Innoventions.

Darrell said...

Anonymous #1: How about rather than bashing Honor like it's YouTube you read the blog and enjoy?

Anyway--that Thinking Man looks a lot like "The Thinker" seen in Night at the Museum 2 with a helmet. That's funny.

Connie Moreno said...

Thanks for the links!

Anonymous said...

Loved the movie...hoping there's more Grid time coming up in the future!

Justin said...

Like most movies the problem is not the "story", its the execution. I understood everything that Massawyrm points out in his article, but the problem was that I either didn't believe it or didn't care. I didn't completely buy into CLU's purpose, I didn't understand how ISOs were important to CLU or humanity, I didn't fully buy into the father/son relationship, and I wasn't completely appalled by CLU's ultimate goal which means I didn't really care about Flynn's sacrifice.

Anonymous said...

The movie is an excuse to indulge the FX muscle of the production and the studio with a thinly veiled story wrapped around it. The article is more like wretched over-analysis, which typical of the AICN geeks. See it for what it is and move on to the next thing.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1- Oh dear no, someone provided a link to something he thinks is interesting on his own blog. What ever shall we do!??!?!?

Cory Gross said...

Massawyrm didn't describe the story. He described certain concepts and themes found in the film, and like Justin above, the problem was the execution.

Okay, so the film had themes of whether or not information should be free. So what? What did it say about them? I dunno', something about Flynn being older and wiser.

Okay, so the ISO's are spontaneous artificial lifeforms. So what? How is this actually supposed to revolutionize everything? I dunno', it's just a gimmick for Quorra and a foil for CLU.

And on it goes... Ideas were were superficially thrust into the arena and nothing was done with them. Legacy's failure at exploring anything comes into focus when you either examine the original Tron or its actual conceptual sequel, the Matrix Trilogy.

Tron, for example, had some interesting religious analogies and a more concrete anthropomorphism of computer presentation of how programs function and relate to users. What the Hell were the programs in the Grid? Extras, that's all. They existed because the script required a crowd. CLU talks about releasing the programs from the tyranny of the users. What does that mean? Are they all AI now? What is the Grid anyways, besides the thing Flynn made?

Then there is the Matrix Trilogy, which was the original Tron to the next level, marrying technological innovation to philosophical content in ways that Legacy did not even try. In fact, it was so philosophical and full of concrete ideas that many audiences found it nausiating and the DVDs could sustain two separate audio-commentaries by professional critics and philsophers. CLU was already done, and done better, by The Architect. The tension between order and chaos was already articulated better by the relationship between The Architect and The Oracle. And Reloaded communicated these ideas so clearly throughout that when I had to miss the whole Architect scene the first time I saw the film (damn you Dr. Pepper!) I was able to accurately reconstruct what he said when I talked it over with my friends afterwards.

Against those sorts of ideas about mind-body-spirit integration, order vs. chaos, and the nature of life, we've got these ISOs that are important for some reason because Flynn tells us so.

Legacy was an alright film... It was a brisk little action music video with some nice visuals. I'll probably do a Tron costume for Halloween this year. But it is definitely different from the original and not even really attempting to accomplish anything like it. It had some themes, but those only existed to get Sam into Lightcycle and Disc duels.

EndOfFranchise said...

Now that the movie is fairly assured not to go $200M domestic (with IMAX, with 3D), it's fair to say that T:L was a bust. Foreign totals might pad the numbers but at $170M budget (plus all the promotional overage), this is by no means a hit. Big opening weekend, coasted through the holidays and then hit reality soon thereafter. Without the Christmas / New Years period, it might've not even reached $110M at this point.

First and foremost, T:L carried on with the tradition of a bad story married to elaborate special effects but, unlike it's predecessor, had nothing new to offer the audience. 3D? No. CGI? No. Unique setting? Obviously, no. Clever storytelling? No.

T:L is a movie about 15 years too late. Jeff Bridges channeling Marlon Brando from "Apocalypse Now" and Garrett Hedlund channeling Hayden Christensen from the Star Wars prequels didn't help.

How ironic that the best TRON sequel Disney has offered is the 2003 TRON 2.0 video game.

Look for some classic Disney executive back-pedaling to all of those post-T:L projects, a la "Atlantis" & "Treasure Planet"-style. They may try to bury T:L projects under a lot of POTC promotion as that film ramps up and then, once that film is done, conveniently forget about anything T:L.

jedited said...

Honor I curious what you have heard from your sources about how Disney ACTUALLY feels about the success or failure of Tron: Legacy. I would assume they were hoping for an Avatar style hit, but are they happy with what they got?

Anonymous said...

I wonder how Disney feels about okaying the muppetmovie now? The muppets are even more retro than Tron.

Anonymous said...

That's what Facebook and Twitter are for. Blogging is about writing your own thought-provoking posts.

2.0 and Beyond said...

^
Then, they may also end up having the same issues with the next POTC film. The first was great, but it's been downhill since.

Disney's penchant for depending on "enhanced" sequels, instead of using actual creativity to come up with new concepts, has often resulted in weak results.

We will just continue to follow the company's attempts and hope for an occasional success.

Anonymous said...

Sigh....A lot of people enjoyed Tron (myself included), but what bothers me are the people who didn't like it. Not only do they over-analyze and bash the movie, but they also have to belittle the people who do like T:L.

A couple posts here feel legit and I respect those, but I've read a lot where they feel insulting. Everyone has a right to their opinion, but some of these "Tron SUCKS" chants come across as trolling.

Cory Gross said...

Hey, I don't bash Tron fans... I like the original and, as I said, Legacy was a brisk, nice looking thing that I'm probably going to do a Halloween costume of. I imagine that I'll pick up a copy of the DVD if I can find it for cheap.

I think overanalyzing it comes out of the fact that seemed to want to have ideas worth analyzing. Those ISOs were supposed to be a big deal. But when you do analyze it, nothing was there. It ended up being a lot of spectacle, and that was it.

Now what I'm curious about is how this plays out with the way that Hollywood actually works. Or at least my impression of how Hollywood works from what Kevin Smith described ^_~ Legacy will probably recoup its costs, so how well will it do on home video and in merchandise? That's the real test. If it doesn't lose Disney money and they make some coin on the side, we probably won't have seen the end of the franchise.

Tron Unit said...

The toys are selling exceptionally well. Target is constantly restocking them. I'd say the merchandising was a win for Disney. You haven't seen the last of Tron. He'll be back.

Anonymous said...

I love Tron Legacy, bring on the sequel!

Anonymous said...

Not sure why you would link to this piece of drivel - most first year film students would be embarrassed if this was their level of analysis.

Talk about trying to please your boss (as this writer is obviously trying to do to the owner of the site).

I’m not quite sure if the writers of the film actually wished me to leave my brain at home when I went to the cinema but I know I would have enjoyed it more if I had.

The only wish I have from reviews of a further sequel is - "... nothing like Tron legacy"