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Culturally impoverishing drivel. I switched off after 30 minutes.
I watched about half an hour of it and then switched off the TV. It was wasting my time. Saw the original as a young man of 24 in 1982. I found it shallow and childish even then, though I enjoyed the special effects and the plot concept of a virtual world, because computers were fresh and new then, nobody owned one at home, and few people had ever played or seen an arcade game of the sophistication represented in Tron, least of all me, and the Internet was pure science fiction in '82, looked forward to only by a few Heavy Metal readers, of which I was one. Tron '82 nicely tickled these fancies. But while the computing world has evolved a thousand percent in the thirty years since 1982, Tron Legacy has evolved only 1 percent beyond Tron. Tron Legacy is just plain flat-out boring, with a ludicrous script that's meaningless and all over the place. It depressed me that this is the impoverished level that American culture has stooped to feeding its youth with, the film's cultural subtext being that so-called 'vintage' computer games of only thirty years age be held in the same awe and historical significance as ancient Egypt, Rome, Homer and Shakespeare. God help America.
From a Far Country (1981)
Even non-Catholic movie buffs will enjoy this superbly directed film
I'm in Italy, the pope just died this weekend (April 2005) so Italian TV showed 'From A Far Country' late last night. I'm not remotely interested in the pope, and I'm not Italian, so I couldn't understand the dubbing, but I nevertheless stayed riveted to this movie because of the stunning cinematography and subtle special effects that gave the images such an extraordinarily documentarily accurate and overwhelming sense of period time and place. From the apparent ages of the principal actors (Sam Neill, Chris Cazenove etc) I was able to guess that the movie was made in the early eighties, though the clever period look of the film and its imaging effects suggested 21st century digital processes, so it was a real puzzle to me who had made it, perhaps some classy 80's director like Hugh Hudson, with a 2005 makeover from ILM, or perhaps the guy who shot Schindler's List, or even Edgar Reitz. But no, turns out it was all the work of some Polish director I'd never heard of. Bravo Krzysztof Zanussi! Anyone interested in making period, historical movies of ostensibly dry subjects should definitely take notes from this guy. Even the back-projected Vatican crowd sequence about halfway through, although looking obviously fake, is nevertheless so well done that one suspends not only disbelief, but also criticism. Rent this movie and watch it with pleasure - It's a delicious visual treat and one heck of a cinematography tutorial!
I like Jeff Bridges tremendously, so I'll watch anything with him in. But this film has so many loose ends, you could make a ragrug.
Good acting by all, but a good dollop of suspension of disbelief is necessary with so many unlikely events or inconclusive nuances of the plot. Vinnie and his girlfriend checking into the same hotel and not knowing it. What was that all about? And what was Carter arranging with Simms anyway even before Vinnie turns up from the past?
The central premise seemed to be Simms's reconciliation with the past - forgive and forget. Very good, but this wasn't developed enough. Okay Carter throws it all away through guilt and wants the simple life again. But it's not believable. They can't be nineteen again.
It should have been filmed in the European style - slow and ponderous would have been so much better. But this version is too clipped and compromised with modern moviegoers tastes. Stone is very very good. Nice to see Nolte in rags again, it's his forte. Jeff is sleepwalking though. New girl terrific. Does she go back to Vinnie in the end or go with Simms? I think it's back to Vinnie. It almost works - I like movies that exercise the mind and leave loose ends to speculate on. But without the basic substance, loose ends is all Simpatico has.