Must See: Tron

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Must-see movies are futuristic classics that shouldn't be missed. Of course, not every must-see is perfect. That's why we've rated them 1-5 on the patented "crunchy goodness" scale. Written by Sherilyn Connelly.

Title: Tron
Date: 1982

Vitals: A roguishly handsome computer genius (it's a fantasy, for sure), looking for evidence that his video game designs were kifed, gets zapped into a computer by an evil mainframe and has to play video games to survive. Irony! Programs physically resemble their programmers, and he shares a kiss with a program written by a woman he used to sleep with. Is that like kissing your ex-girlfriend's clone? Or daughter? Or...

Famous names: The gorgeous electronic score by Wendy Carlos proves (much as Jerry Goldsmith's did with Star Trek: The Motion Picture a few years earlier) that a good soundtrack can help compensate for narrative flaws.


Crunchy goodness: 5

Stunt casting: Pac-Man, at 45:21.

Memorable product tie-in: While the movie didn't do as well as expected (it wasn't a huge flop, but it wasn't the blockbuster Disney needed), the tie-in video game was a huge hit, grossing more than the movie itself.


Bang for your buck: Between the groundbreaking CGI environments and extensive rotoscoping work done on each 65mm frame set inside the computer and whole lot of other techniques and tricks, every penny is on the screen—though, admittedly, it wouldn't have hurt to have lost a few seconds of bells and whistles to pay for one more draft of the script, or at least a technical advisor to make sure the computer terminology being tossed around was remotely accurate.

Tron Sector