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Tron: Legacy [Blu-Ray]

Joseph Kosinski

Tron: Legacy [Blu-Ray]
It's more than a little ironic that what makes the original Tron (released in 1982) so visually striking isn't the rudimentary computer graphics that it features, which would go on to inspire the widespread use of CGI in cinema. No, it's something far more low-tech: the "backlit animation" that would give the film's "in computer" sequences an ethereal glow; it was so expensive and time-consuming that it would never be used in another film. Although it is, in its own way, visually stunning, Tron: Legacy's lack of such a "human" process in its development gives the film a feeling that's far colder than the original. Whereas Tron is unashamedly a children's adventure film, carefully balancing thrills with friendliness, Tron: Legacy is event filmmaking. Created to be shown in IMAX, in 3D, bloated to two hours long to make sure the punters feel like they've got their money's worth and featuring a hero that is focus group inspirational ― rich, blandly handsome and jock-ish, yet tech-y, alternative and aimless (he comes off as a total dick) ― Tron: Legacy doesn't have the heart of the original. The gaping hole where it should be is exposed on this DVD/Blu-Ray release, which includes special features entirely built towards juicing up its audience to consume what is, thanks to the film's reasonable success, now a "franchise." There's a seconds-long look at a new Disney animation series, a short film that promises to show the viewer "what happens after the film ends," but is instead some sort of low-budget collation of viral-marketing off-cuts, and a few scant documentaries, one of which largely features the producers and writers talking about how excited they are about making the sequels. Even if you loved Tron: Legacy, these extras are going to disappoint ― no commentary and no deleted scenes, even in animatic form. All you're left with is a (of course!) spotless transfer of a film that's far too shallow to stand up to any sort of repeated viewings. (Buena Vista)
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