5-minute “Tron: Legacy” Review

There are only a couple of reasons you’d bring up dialogue when referencing a movie: if it’s really clever and witty, or if it’s stale and repetitive. Most of the time, you tend not to notice specific bits of dialogue in a film, because it comes off as a natural pattern of speech. “Tron: Legacy” is anything but natural.

Disclaimer from the get-go: I am a big fan of the original 80s “Tron.” I know it was a bit campy, but at least it was clever-campy, and had a fairly well-thought out plot. “Tron: Legacy” has a number of fatal flaws, most notably that even though it’s a 3-D movie, most of the characters are just flat, 2-D automatons.

The special effects are nice, and the 3-D (in the XD theater, no less) experience is pretty well-done. The filmmakers didn’t utilize the 3-D effects throughout the movie (which was nice), and didn’t resort to any cheesy “coming-straight-at-you in 3-D!” moments. The virtual (and younger) Jeff Bridges was fairly well done—way better than the digital actors in “Polar Express.” It’s just unfortunate that the effects don’t compensate for the plot and dialogue.

Which brings me to the plot of “Tron: Legacy.” The original “Tron” wasn’t well known for it’s plot, but when you have more complexity in an early-80s throwaway popcorn-muncher than a huge, 2010 blockbuster, something’s wrong. It’s all very linear, stale, and predictable. It also rips-off “Star Wars” over and over again, which is fairly obvious to anyone over the age of 8.

Finally, let’s address the script, or lack thereof. I can’t remember a recent movie with worse dialogue and acting (and believe me, I’ve seen about 100 films made since 2005 in the last year or so). It was shockingly bad, delivered in a wooden tone, and just plain dull. It’s hard to describe how atrocious the writing was, particularly considering that the screenwriters were the guys that worked on the “Lost” television series. Neither of the two screenwriters has a feature film to their credit (until now), and as a “Lost” fan, I was sorely disappointed there.

Needless to say, while I’m still glad I saw “Tron: Legacy” in the theater, where I received the giant screen, supreme sound system experience, the movie isn’t worth repeat viewings, and I hope they decide to skip a sequel.