Tron Legacy is a direct continuation of the film Tron (1982) which first introduced us to Jeff Bridges and Bruce Boxleitner. Tron (1982) told the story of a young computer programmer named Kevin Flynn who was let go by the company ENCOM after he attempted to reveal that someone within the company stole credit for the games he programmed. One night while seeking evidence within the company to prove the games he created were his, he is accidentally transported into the world of computer programs. In this world of computer programs, Kevin Flynn was a user fighting to protect himself and other programs from being deleted by the Master Control Program. Kevin Flynn succeeded in destroying the Master Control Program and in the process found the evidence he needed to clear his own name. In the sequel Tron: Legacy Kevin Flynn disappears into The Grid which is a community and world he created soon after the events of the original Tron. Sam Flynn, son of Kevin Flynn feels abandoned by his father after his disappearance and grows up feeling neglected. Kevin Flynn’s friend Alan Bradley approaches the rebellious Sam, now an adult; about taking over the company ENCOM and also revealing he received a page from Kevin Flynn’s office. Sam rides on his motorcycle to investigate the page and finds his dad’s office and is transported into The Grid. The Grid is the place where Sam’s father is being held prisoner by program Clu 2.0. The idea is that Sam has to find his dad and stop Clu from taking over humanity before the portal back to reality closes.
This film essentially carries the theme of a son searching for the father that he lost over a 20 year period. Tron: Legacy was shot partially in 3D so that people could feel like they were in The Grid. The 3D effect only serves to mask a very weak story and the saving grace of this film is Jeff Bridges return to the role of Kevin Flynn. Jeff Bridges plays the older version of Kevin Flynn like a more subdued version of the Dude from the Big Labowski. I don’t mind at all that Jeff took that approach because it makes the character seem like he is at least aware of how the digital world he has created has gone awry.