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The Religious Legacy of “Tron”
David Horowitz's NewsReal Blog ^ | December 18, 2010 | Walter Hudson

Posted on 12/18/2010 7:08:50 PM PST by Walter Scott Hudson

Featuring computer graphics which where state-of-the-art in 1982, Disney’s Tron became a cult classic among science fiction fans. While the film has not aged well, its high-concept has contributed to its endurance.

Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of Tron was its role as religious allegory. The film depicted a computer-generated world where programs were created in the image of their human users. Those users were thus viewed as deities from the programs’ perspective. The villains in the film were aberrant programs who sought to wrest control of the system in which they operated. To this end, they propagated the idea that the users did not exist. When programmer Kevin Flynn is pulled into their digital realm, he takes on the role of religious avatar, challenging the programs’ paradigm.

The long-awaited sequel, Tron: Legacy, takes the allegory much further. The Judeo-Christian references are quite bold for a modern Hollywood production. Yet the writers are clearly not attempting to evangelize a particular faith. Quite the contrary, the religious legacy of Tron is an ecumenical mix of various faiths which dispenses with the notion of an all-powerful God. The film suggests that creation is an unpredictable phenomenon which can baffle and surpass its creator. As we consider how this plays out, be warned, there will be spoilers.

(Excerpt) Read more at newsrealblog.com ...


TOPICS: Religion; TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: christianity; judaism; newage; tron

1 posted on 12/18/2010 7:08:58 PM PST by Walter Scott Hudson
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

1011101 01001 100101 01001001 01001010 00010010


2 posted on 12/18/2010 7:14:00 PM PST by UCANSEE2 (Lame and ill-informed post)
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To: Walter Scott Hudson
"... While the film has not aged well, its high-concept has contributed to its endurance."

I dunno... It's still a tech-geek cult classic. Best of all is the bizarre plot line trying to understand what the heck the tech company ENCOM really does. The Wendy Carlos score is a compelling classic. Still a great classic movie all around.

3 posted on 12/18/2010 7:14:50 PM PST by The KG9 Kid
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

Just saw it today. We were big fans of the original movie and were not disappointed by the sequel. Jeff Bridges did a great job. Saw the 3D version.


4 posted on 12/18/2010 7:15:33 PM PST by MomwithHope (Wake up America we are at war with militant Islam and progressives - 2 fronts.)
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To: Walter Scott Hudson
....the religious legacy of Tron is an ecumenical mix of various faiths which dispenses with the notion of an all-powerful God. The film suggests that creation is an unpredictable phenomenon which can baffle and surpass its creator.

And this is the religious legacy of who, exactly?

5 posted on 12/18/2010 7:19:49 PM PST by Alex Murphy ("Posting news feeds, making eyes bleed, he's hated on seven continents")
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

Spoilers ahead:

Interesting comments. I think he takes it a little too far however. Quorra was clearly checking how well Sam filled out his costume on their little drive to his dad and that doesn’t really fit with an analogy of the relationship between Christ and the church. There was no hooking up between them because they wanted a PG rating.

I saw it more as an allegory of the Book of Revelation. The programs knew Flynn was their creator, but they were in rebellion against him. The result was the end of their world and the lifting of the one was faithful to them up to ‘heaven’.


6 posted on 12/18/2010 7:24:20 PM PST by Grig
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To: MomwithHope

I saw the 2D version today. It was ok. To answer some questions here, Emcom makes operating systems.

I heard two geeks talking before the movie. They were seeing it for the second time that day.


7 posted on 12/18/2010 7:24:28 PM PST by EQAndyBuzz (Remember March 23, 1775. Remember March 23, 2010)
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To: MomwithHope

I saw the 2D version today. It was ok. To answer some questions here, Emcom makes operating systems.

I heard two geeks talking before the movie. They were seeing it for the second time that day.

FYI... If you are going to put Olivia Wilde in a black body suit, at least let her show it off.


8 posted on 12/18/2010 7:26:59 PM PST by EQAndyBuzz (Remember March 23, 1775. Remember March 23, 2010)
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To: Alex Murphy

Buddhist, Daoist, all forms of ancestor worship come to mind.


9 posted on 12/18/2010 7:28:51 PM PST by JimSEA
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To: Alex Murphy

I think he is saying that the movie dispenses with the notion of an all-powerful God, not the faith traditions it draws on.

The first movie did the same thing, Tron thinks everything Flynn is doing is according to a plan, and Flynn tells him, nope, he’s just making it up as he goes along. It has always been in the Troniverse that programs look to users as gods, but it really goes too far to suggest the movie writers are trying to say something about God and religion in the real world.


10 posted on 12/18/2010 7:30:47 PM PST by Grig
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To: The KG9 Kid

In the original TRON, the effects were CGI and looked like it. In TRON LEGACY, the effects are so real, they look real.

Some liked it better with the old look. Some like the new better.

The plot? Plots are a dime a dozen.

Hot chicks, Hot Bikes, Ultimate Disc Golf throws and Recognizers in IMAX 3D are what TRON LEGACY is about.


11 posted on 12/18/2010 7:32:29 PM PST by UCANSEE2 (Lame and ill-informed post)
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

I went on record with hubby with a guess.

Haven’t seen TRON yet, but the commercials lead me to believe a veiled Gospel story line ie. Creator’s Son sacrifices himself to save his Father’s creation.


12 posted on 12/18/2010 7:34:35 PM PST by Jo Nuvark (Those who bless Israel will be blessed, those who curse Israel will be cursed. Gen 12:3)
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To: Jo Nuvark

Father sacrifices his life with his son to protect his ultimate creation (Ms. Wilde) as well as his son. Father also admits there is no such thing as creation and ends his life to save others as an act of redemption.


13 posted on 12/18/2010 7:58:54 PM PST by tbw2 (Freeper sci-fi - "Sirat: Through the Fires of Hell" - on amazon.com)
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

My son saw it today. Loved it. He said there were a few strange lines in it, but otherwise great. He’s been waiting for this film forever - the original Tron was his favorite movie.

He said everyone in the theatre laughed at a line about evil corporations protecting their copywritten investments. I mean, like Disney?


14 posted on 12/18/2010 8:39:40 PM PST by I still care (I miss my friends, bagels, and the NYC skyline - but not the taxes. I love the South.)
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To: MomwithHope

Just got home from seeing it with a couple of friends. All of us loved it and are hoping that the loose threads they left at the end of the movie means that there will be a sequel.


15 posted on 12/18/2010 8:43:42 PM PST by Stonewall Jackson (Democrats: "You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy.")
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To: Walter Scott Hudson
he latest TRON will be remembered for the breakout digital effects they invented to make Jeff Bridges "young". I had read about the way they did this before I saw the movie and I thought that the "young" Bridges might look a bit fake. It did not.

What next? We bring Elvis back?

16 posted on 12/18/2010 8:53:38 PM PST by isthisnickcool (Sharia? No thanks.)
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To: UCANSEE2
1011101 01001 100101 01001001 01001010 00010010

Screw ASKIE .... EBCDIC forever!

17 posted on 12/18/2010 9:59:59 PM PST by tophat9000 (.............................. BP + BO = BS ...........................Formula for a disaster...)
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To: EQAndyBuzz

Met Cindy Morgan from the original “TRON”. She was strikingly beautiful in it, costume and all. Then she showed up in “Caddy Shack”.

Need I say anything more?

{Also met Bruce Boxleiter, a very nice person).

WOuld like to meet Jeff Bridges, a very versatile actor (Iceman, Against All Odds, etc).


18 posted on 12/18/2010 10:15:14 PM PST by MadMax, the Grinning Reaper
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To: UCANSEE2

01010100 01010010 01001111 01001110


19 posted on 12/18/2010 10:25:04 PM PST by Lloyd227 (Class of 1998 (let's all help the Team McCain spider monkeys decide how to moderate))
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To: EQAndyBuzz

>>I heard two geeks talking before the movie.<<

How do you know they were geeks?

>>They were seeing it for the second time that day.<<

Oh, Never mind. ;)


20 posted on 12/18/2010 11:55:05 PM PST by RobRoy (The US Today: Revelation 18:4)
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To: tophat9000

>>Screw ASKIE .... EBCDIC forever!<<

Now we’re talking! Anything that doesn’t sort numbers to the top in a descending sort is just wrong!

1111 1001


21 posted on 12/19/2010 12:02:55 AM PST by RobRoy (The US Today: Revelation 18:4)
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To: Grig

Spoiler:

Adolescent children check each other out without fully understanding why their doing it. I maintain that Quorra’s admiration was innocent. Consider the ending and how her focus was on the world she had transcended to. Kissing is PG, yet there was none.


22 posted on 12/19/2010 1:28:58 AM PST by Walter Scott Hudson (fightinwords.us)
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To: Grig
It has always been in the Troniverse that programs look to users as gods, but it really goes too far to suggest the movie writers are trying to say something about God and religion in the real world.

How does that go too far? Science fiction is one of the most effective mediums for social commentary. Did you feel the same way about Avatar? Did that film have nothing to say about the real world?

23 posted on 12/19/2010 1:34:07 AM PST by Walter Scott Hudson (fightinwords.us)
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To: MadMax, the Grinning Reaper

Some would say that Cindy has aged better than TRON. In any case, she looks great.

24 posted on 12/19/2010 3:58:33 AM PST by Pollster1 (Natural born citizen of the USA, with the birth certificate to prove it)
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To: Pollster1

“I was born to love you,
“I was born to lick your face,
“I was born to rub you
“But you were born to rub me first.”


25 posted on 12/19/2010 4:11:39 AM PST by RichInOC (No! BAD Rich! (What'd I say?))
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

I say it goes too far because nothing in the movie supports it. It is quite reasonable for programs (were they sentient as in the movie) to look to users as creators, hence as gods. It doesn’t make sense to suggest the movie claims that WE are programs ourselves created by a being as flawed as we are. The movie just doesn’t go there.

Certainly movies can be a vehicle to try and push a political or theological agenda, but sometimes they are not intended in that way at all and they are just trying to entertain the masses. I don’t see any reason to view Tron: Legacy as pushing a theological agenda. Yes, there is a religious component to the culture it takes place in, but that is not the same thing. It is a setting and culture completely separate from our own. Likewise, Lord of the Rings wasn’t trying to indoctrinate us into elven theology.

As for Avatar, I didn’t see it so I can’t comment.


26 posted on 12/19/2010 1:20:59 PM PST by Grig
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

Oh come on, you are trying to hammer a square peg into a round hole. Pre-pubecent kids do not check out members of the opposite sex the way she checked him out.

Given that this was the son of her mentor/god would make her reluctant to make a move on him if she felt so inclined, and Sam had a lot of other things on his mind.

Keep in mind that the portal only stays open for 8 hours of ‘Tron time’, and he was there a while before they even met. Most time people don’t go from their first Hello to making out or hooking up in a couple hours. Their relationship progressed in a normal and natural way given the short (and busy) time frame the events took place in.

On the other hand, after she comes to his bedroom and gives him the information about Zeus, it cuts to his driving to the city. Who knows what took place in between. There might be a missing scene as there was in the first movie!

Anyway, kind of a sad comment on society when people have to look for exceptional reasons to explain why they didn’t see the male and female leads in a movie didn’t hop in bed.


27 posted on 12/19/2010 1:35:39 PM PST by Grig
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To: Grig

In other words, there is no such thing as allegory. In order for fiction to comment on matter of a religious nature, it must be explicit. That’s an odd view. But it’s yours to have.


28 posted on 12/20/2010 2:24:04 PM PST by Walter Scott Hudson (fightinwords.us)
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To: Walter Scott Hudson

So now you try to put words in my mouth instead of into the mouth of the writers of the movie?

Allegories exist when a writer writes one, not when you take a flying leap from what they wrote into your own ideas. If you want to project your own religious ideas onto the movie, fine, be my guest, but don’t go on pretending that those ideas are what the writers were trying to say to everybody unless you can point to something they actually wrote that supports the claim.

I see nothing ‘strange’ about Sam and Quorra not getting intimate over the short and very busy timeframe the film covers, it needs no special explanation or allegory to explain it. And if would take a lot more than that to convince me of the allegory than this lack of romantic expression between them.

In fact, given how often God compares his relationship with his people to the relationship between a husband and wife, the lack of romantic contact between them is CONTRARY to that supposed allegory.


29 posted on 12/20/2010 7:52:52 PM PST by Grig
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To: Grig

An allegory is, by its very nature, ambiguous. So I’m not sure why you would expect it to be more explicit. To each their own.


30 posted on 12/20/2010 8:05:41 PM PST by Walter Scott Hudson (fightinwords.us)
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