Sunday, December 19, 2010

Flashy, eye-popping ‘Tron: Legacy’

As expected, the sequel to the 1982 science fiction flick ‘Tron’ is flashy, thanks mostly to the vast improvements in special effects technology and digital wizardry. The hidden dimension is appropriately more luminous and trippy in “Tron: Legacy,” a dazzling popcorn flick that continues the story of vanished programmer Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges), whose now-adult son Sam (Garrett Hedlund) finds himself in the Grid cyber-realm ruled by Flynn’s powerful doppelganger Clu.

“Legacy” re-introduces the Tron world comprehensibly enough with an accessible adventure and a likeable rebel-saboteur hero. The effects enthrall; it’s hard not to like the light-trimmed cycles, uniforms and deadly “frisbee” duels. Not all effects-enhanced scenes impress, however. One pivotal aerial battle is a watered-down and unexciting rehash of the Millennium Falcon-Tie Fighters confrontation. And speaking of effects, the more youthful-looking Bridges possesses an obvious fakeness that gets distracting.

Daft Punk’s riveting electronic music rightly complements the eye-popping imagery. Interesting god-man analogies describe the Flynn-Clu relationship throughout the story, but the rebellion being pulled off by just a handful of improvising renegades isn’t very convincing. Still, the stylishly designed sequel is worth seeing on the big screen in all its pulsating, glow-in-the-dark glory.

“Tron: Legacy” is currently in Metro Manila cinemas, and will be exclusively screened at Imax theaters during Christmas week/the MMFF period.

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