"Tron" tells the story of a young computer programmer named Flynn (Jeff Bridges) who gets sucked INTO a computer, and must fight for his life playing life-or-death video games, run by the evil Master Control Program. With the aid of a good warrior program named Tron (Bruce Boxleitner), and Tron's significant-other Yori (Cindy Morgan), Flynn must put a stop to the MCP and set things right in the computer world once again before returning to his own world.
With breathtakingly beautiful computer-animation (and the very first film to use computer-animation extensively), and presenting an original, dazzling world where energy lives and breathes inside a computer, "Tron" was way ahead of it's time. This may explain why the film was greeted with incomprehension from critics and audience members alike back in 1982.
The problem was, back in 1982, there was no such thing as the Internet, and, apart from business types, most people didn't really know diddlysquat about computers yet. As a result, the computer jargon heard throughout "Tron" went sailing over most audience members' heads, and for many, the story was difficult to follow. Critics complained that "Tron" was all special effects and no story. And, for the final insult, "Tron" wasn't even NOMINATED for Best Visual Effects at Oscar time, presumably because the Academy in 1982 didn't recognize computer-animation as "genuine" visual effects, i.e. "it's animation, not visual effects," they thought to themselves. "The Abyss" changed all that in 1989, but that was a big seven years after "Tron." Obviously, everyone in 1982 had missed the film's point.
But the passing of time has been very kind to "Tron." Today, the film has a major cult following, and is recognized by many as the landmark sci-fi film that it truly is. Looking at "Tron" today, the movie has aged very well indeed, like a fine wine. Now that time--and people's knowledge of computers--has finally caught up with "Tron," now would be the PERFECT time for the world in general to take another look at this amazing film.
Message to Disney: put "Tron" back in theaters! Clean it up with a new remastered print & remastered sound, and let the world rediscover this sci-fi classic. It WILL be a smash hit! In 1982, people just didn't understand "Tron." Today, they will. Trust me. :-)