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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

POSTER ART
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FILM DETAILS
Certificate
PG
Cast
Jeff Bridges
Garrett Hedlund
Olivia Wilde
Bruce Boxleitner
James Frain
Beau Garrett
Michael Sheen.
Directors
Joseph Kosinski.
Screenwriters
Edward Kitsis
Adam Horowitz.
Running Time
126 minutes

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Tron Legacy
Give us a Clu


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Plot
Tech-savvy twentysomething Sam Flynn (Hedlund) is still bitter that his father vanished during his formative years. But when a mysterious message lures him to his dad’s old arcade, he finds himself plunged into a computer world and forced to battle Clu (Bridges), a pixelly clone of his pops, circa 1985.


Review
Tron Legacy
Browse more images »
One wonders what Tron Guy, that portly fanman with bushy moustache and homemade XL bodysuit, will make of Tron Legacy. Until now he has been a walking representation of all things Tron-world: clunky, silly, the toast of nerds, the opposite of glamour. But now, with the arrival of the mega-budget sequel, the game grid has changed. This is a movie of astonishing high-end gloss, fused to a pounding Daft Punk soundtrack, populated with sleek sirens and chiselled hunks, boasting electroluminescent landscapes to make Blu-ray players weep. Tron is suddenly, undeniably cool. But where does that leave the guy with the DIY light disc?

In truth, this is one of the smartest ideas for a reboot in yonks. Where its fellow 1982 sci-fi releases, E.T. and Blade Runner, are still universally celebrated, Tron’s visuals and ponderous tone have aged as badly as Manic Miner. The concept at the Disney film’s core, however, remains beautifully simple: what if a man got sucked into a computer? That notion, revisited with today’s turbo-boosted VFX technology, has now given Mickey Mouse a stonking tentpole. And make no mistake, Tron Legacy — part sequel, part remake — is a proper event movie, complete with nattily digitised Cinderella’s Castle at the start, a journey to a fully realised alien world and the best 3D since Avatar.

Smartly, director Joseph Kosinski (incredibly making his debut feature) uses the bonus dimension as a technique rather than a lick of paint. Just as The Wizard Of Oz switches from black-and-white to colour once Dorothy is hurled into Kansas, so Legacy doesn’t go 3D until hero Sam (a decent if vanilla Garrett Hedlund) gets laser-blasted into the electronic world. The ensuing 20 minutes, as Sam voyages through the neon bowels of Tron-world and finds himself forced to play killer frisbee, is the film’s best stretch. There are deft comic touches, like a twitchily malfunctioning programme shackled to the transport ship, terrifically edited action, and actual sexiness, in the shape of four cyber-sirens. Plus, did we mention the killer frisbee?

Alas, once the plot turns up, the fun starts to drain out like power from a MacBook. Part of the problem is Jeff Bridges’ Kevin Flynn, who was a goofy delight in the original but here is a bearded, barefooted, yoga-practicing sage. Despite Bridges’ always-likeable presence and the fact he talks in Dude-like zen-nuggets (“It’s biodigital jazz, man”), he’s lumbered with Matrix-sequel levels of exposition. Way too much new shit comes to light.

Then there’s Clu, Flynn’s young clone — a CPU chip off the old block? — who’s turned diabolical, enslaved his land and has designs on doing the same to the real world. The idea of pitting a movie star against their younger self has been around for years (a never-produced project called Gemini Man would have seen Mel Gibson as a hit man stalked by his fitter CG doppleganger), but Tron Legacy is the first to take the plunge. It’s a bold attempt which is mostly effective, though Clu’s eyes have a plastic sheen. More damaging to the film is the villain’s scheme, which is so abstract (how exactly are his shock-troops going to invade Earth? Bop people on the head with their glowsticks?) that there’s never much of a feeling of peril.

Still, Tron 2.0 sounds great, looks greater and features Michael Sheen as a gyrating club owner with a fluoro cane. There are lovely details, like the fact the drinks in the End Of Line club have ice-pixels, not cubes, or the lightning that forks in geometric lines. And Olivia Wilde is a slinky delight as Quorra, her naivety prompting some big laughs. Shame, then, that an over-serious mood and sterile dialogue make the third act crash rather than soar.


Verdict
A triumph of art direction, sound design and Gallic phat beats, but could do with a script upgrade and fun.exe patch.


Reviewed by Nick de Semlyen


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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Tron Legacy
Empire Star Rating

One of my all time favourites

A review in bullet points: .a plot way better than the piece of crap plot from the visually stunning avatar .awesome visuals . Fantastic acting from Jeff Bridgets and Michael sheen . Ultra cool music Overall this is a underrated masterpiece with only one let down Olivia Wilde's half decent acting . ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by mr darkman at 16:05, 16 April 2014 | Report This Post


Tron: Legacy (2010)

Its been a while since we visited the world of Tron, and suddenly this unwanted sequel turns up...and it took us by surprise. A film that looks better, is scored better and acted better. A great surprise and great under estimated film! A fantastic thrill ride that is a classic and better than the original, and I love the original. I'll admit Legacy is lacking plot, but IT is a better film, same as Escape From New York, great fun when you get into it and so you don't care! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by The Grimeanator at 23:31, 06 August 2012 | Report This Post


Tron: Legacy

Sure, it doesn't have the most simulating script, but who cares? Tron: Legacy is electric fun packed with breathtaking visuals, thrilling action sequences and an astonishing addictive score. It's the best non-light show light show. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by norgizfox at 01:21, 19 June 2012 | Report This Post


poor

One star for its soundtrack. One star for its cinematography. Nothing else here is worth anything. Make what you like of that. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by tysmuse at 20:15, 02 January 2012 | Report This Post


exceeded expectations

after watching both films for the first time very close together i liked the first one a lot for its time it still looks good now but the artwork and visual effects in legacy are just out of this world there the best ive seen and my only regret is that i missed seeing this at the cinema ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by chrisharvey1551 at 02:38, 01 December 2011 | Report This Post


exceeded expectations

after watching both films for the first time very close together i liked the first one a lot for its time it still looks good now but the artwork and visual effects in legacy are just out of this world there the best ive seen and my only regret is that i missed seeing this at the cinema ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by chrisharvey1551 at 02:38, 01 December 2011 | Report This Post


Gorgeous looking

The movie itself is just ok, but it is elevated by stunning visuals and the best soundtrack in ages. Some of the scenes, scored by Daft Punk, makes me think of Deus Ex, for some reason...gonna have to install it...AGAIN ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by amerelium at 14:36, 02 August 2011 | Report This Post


Darth maul legacy?

Finally got to the end of this second time round after falling Asleep first time...Bridges going through the motions, uninspiring plot and the title character? Floating in the water ready for a three quel. Perhaps they'll drag it out til the fourth film before he takes his helmet off? I bet I'd have stretched to 3 stars if I'd seen it in 3D. But i didn't. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by serious_syd at 19:53, 17 June 2011 | Report This Post


RE: Tron Legacy

. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Atomhammer at 14:37, 25 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: Tron Legacy

Rather than rehash everyones posts I would like to say that this certainly went beyond my expectations. I wasn't expecting much as the original film was eye candy but not much else to me as a child. This new movie appears to be a taster of things to come rather than a totally self contained movie IMO. Regardless of this I really did enjoy it. I found Flynn's son a bit bland and the CGI at the start with Flynn Snr a bit jarring but everything else seemed really top notch and pull... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Atomhammer at 14:25, 25 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: Tron Legacy

When I saw this in 3D I was immediately blown away. The story was good but the effects were fantastic. Hope to see more films like this one. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by abinclane at 10:27, 25 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: What?

Finally saw this, having loved the soundtrack album and dug the 'reconfigured' mix cd. Amusing to see Daft Punk guest as the DJs. However, a slightlack of imagination and ambition in the film itself. And given that Flynn and Clu were 'connected' and apparently a yin/yang pair, effectively dependent on each other for their continued existence WHY EVEN BOTHER having a de-aged performance for the baddie? How much more effective might it have been to see Bridges play the both zen flynn and the... More

Posted by jobloffski at 22:10, 23 May 2011 | Report This Post


What?

I love the fact that people are complaining that Jeff's digital doppleganger looks like a computer graphic. That's funny man. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by danielthompson99 at 21:42, 19 May 2011 | Report This Post


Believe the hype

Stunning art direction, lots of action, and some sexy chicks. SOLD! I was totally blown away by Jeff Bridges who seems to only deliver Oscar quality performances, even in trite like this and Iron Man. Cyber youngness. This is the future boys and girls. Love that Daft Punk are included, no worries about costumes for them. "Bring your evening wear boys." Oh my word, this film looks good! Sounds good! Wish I was able to experience this as a kid. Wish Star Wars looked this good! I have ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by danielthompson99 at 20:47, 18 May 2011 | Report This Post


Poor

Terrible acting- terrible editing-poor direction. Some cgi is truly awful ie plastic fantastic clu. Did they not se e benjamin button? Our even terminator salvation. Usually I age with empire reviews but not this one. Avoid ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by a123matt at 23:48, 13 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: Tron Legacy

Everyone are entitled to his or her opinion. Does we might consider that the person behind this movie have exerted effort to reach its success. --------------- tp://www.buyingahouse.ca]buying a house ... More

Posted by PaulWatson101 at 05:41, 11 May 2011 | Report This Post


5 stars

First off, watch the original first. If you get it, you'll love legacy, if not don't bother. Secondly, see it in imax(totally missing out if u don't!) or have a decent tv/surround sound set up and get the blue ray, still awesome!! Amazing sets, visuals, costumes and sound track. The storys as good as the first film so dont get excited, enjoy it for what it is, an audio/visual spectacle. Its not a comedy(did anyone say it was?) but defo has its moments. Indicacitive of the world today, eve... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by skinsback at 00:43, 11 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: Tron Legacy

Really enjoyed it and so did my two boys aged 7 and 9 ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Razors at 00:01, 10 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: I'm grateful a sequel happened at all!

First half yay, econd half nay. And WHY OH WHY do directors insist on those hideously embarassing clched "club scenes" with DJ's and somebody in the background twirling a stick or something, getting off on the action taking place with thumping music in the background?  It really pisses me off, I have to look away. And I can only assume we're being set up for a sequel?  Otherwise the inclusion of Tron and Dillingers' son were majorly dropped balls of potential. ... More

Posted by Drone at 14:24, 05 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: I'm grateful a sequel happened at all!

I was never a huge fan of the 1980's original first Tron but it always had a certain charm about it. Like a Blade-runner thats been made more suitable for kids. And to be honest if you dont suspend disbelief from the off and you are not a sci/fi fan, this probably wont be your cup of tea. However there is some fun to be had, unlike other 'dumb' movies i have seen recently...yep, im looking at you M.r Eckhart and co. Tron Legacy is all a bit, well, Star-Wars-y with its themes of long lost ... More

Posted by Roykfrapp at 08:46, 01 May 2011 | Report This Post


RE: I'm grateful a sequel happened at all!

Who are we kidding? The effects is the main attract and what an attraction, I still don't like the new uniforms, the whole Jedi/apprentice thing with Quorra and Kevin was amusing - Jeff was amusing, he was seventeen when woodstock happened and you get the feeling he went there and came back with no regrets! He's 61 now and still uses boho slang! - You can't fault the guy! I admit I prefer the fun Kevin to this Zen Kevin! Sam, Sam slipped into hero mood a little too quick in my mind - Mich... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Sphinx at 20:17, 30 April 2011 | Report This Post


RE: I fight for the reviewers

I don't remember too much of the orignal beyond the light cycles and the general look of the thing, but did Tron play a more prominant role in the first one? I assume he did cos they named it after him. For TL it looks like he was added in as an afterthought.   Leaving aside all the plot holes (like how was Clu going to take over the world) all could have been forgiven if the the film was fun, it wasn't.   It's like it was written by someone who's favourite bit of the Matrix ... More

Posted by blackduck at 15:21, 26 April 2011 | Report This Post


RE: I fight for the reviewers

There are two things selling this late in the day sequel: visual effects and nostagia. In regards to the former, seeing the film in 2D kinda robbed me of the real experience. Reducing a visual treat such as this of that third demension leaves it relying on the story and characters which aren't quite enough to sustain a two hour running time (not unlike another 3D blockbuster featuring blue glowing people). The plot, while serviciable, never fully engages the viewing and is dragged ou... More

Posted by G Funk at 13:19, 26 April 2011 | Report This Post


I fight for the reviewers

Legacy may explain what happend after the original but sam flynn was a crap character, my main concern was barely any tron and the jeff bridges tried playing the wise old man instead of the radical action hero that was expected, but i thought it had a descent soundtrack and amazing visual effects. possible sequel presented itself through Ed Dillinger jr.'s suspiciously short apperance and tron not dying. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Jables55 at 14:27, 23 April 2011 | Report This Post


I fight for the reviewers

Legacy may explain what happend after the original but sam flynn was a crap character, my main concern was barely any tron and the jeff bridges tried playing the wise old man instead of the radical action hero that was expected, but i thought it had a descent soundtrack and amazing visual effects. possible sequel presented itself through Ed Dillinger jr.'s suspiciously short apperance and tron not dying. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Jables55 at 14:27, 23 April 2011 | Report This Post


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