The original Tron (1982) never needed a sequel. The little story that was told in that one was finished. But it being a little outdated special effects wise it made sense for Disney to return us to the Tron Universe.
And I for one am glad they did because Tron: Legacy certainly is one of the most visually appealing movies I have seen. It also comes with one of the best soundtracks ever composed for a film. For that we have to thank Daft Punk. They have made it so that every action or event becomes more dramatic and exciting. The combination of the beautiful eye candy and music makes a lot of scenes epic and very memorable.
Like the original there is a minimalistic approach to the story where we get presented of how the world is without getting much background or explanation on it until the plot demands it. It's because they chose the story to be in service of the spectacle instead of the other way around. Now there are a lot of things that won't make sense and certainly need a more in depth explanation. Although after having given this some thought I came to the conclusion that being abstract and minimalistic like this actually helps the film being more fantastic and magical. It enhances the mystique around The Creator Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) and everything about users. Protagonist Sam (son of Kevin Flynn) played by Garreth Hedlund is a little flat as a character but because of the mysticism concerning the users and this digital world he also becomes interesting. That and him being the son of Kevin Flynn of course. The relationship between father Kevin and Sam is the driving force of this film. And this could almost seen as brilliant because it is that one plot element that many people can relate to.
Which brings me to the villain of the story. Clu. A younger and CGI version of Jeff Bridges. While it might be far from perfect in some sequences it looked eerily real. There were certain moments where I was wondering if one day they would be able to trick me by making a CGI character seem so real you wouldn't notice. Now you obviously can but it never detracted me since it still is Jeff Bridges giving one hell of a performance underneath a CGI mask.
Then there is the treatment of Tron. As you all know in the original Tron was played by Bruce Boxleitner. And in the original he had a very big part to play. The character is still made significant in a small way but much less than I had hoped and nearly not enough of Boxleitner playing him. Luckily Disney made up for this in the little short called The Next Day: Flynn Lives which comes added on the Blu-ray and the animated TV series Tron: Uprising which sadly only got one season. Don't let that get in the way of you watching it. Since it fills in the much wanted and needed background on The Grid (Tron Universe) and it's characters.
Tron: Legacy is a very beautiful but also very touching film that does more things right than wrong. For the most part the pacing is good. It does slow down somewhat in the middle but it never feels like moments are dragged on or wasted. The eye candy and good music don't give you the chance to. This is one of those titles you simply should own. Preferably on Blu-ray since it looks amazing in HD.