Kevin Flynn:TRON: Legacy
A digital frontier.
I tried to picture clusters of information as they moved through the computer.
What did they look like?
Ships? Motorcycles? Were the circuits like freeways?
I kept dreaming of a world I thought I'd never see.
And then, one day... Sam Flynn:
You got in? Kevin Flynn:
That's right, man. I got in
, the long-awaited sequel to Disney's 1982 Cult Classic
, picks up where the original film's story left off: seven years after defeating the Master Control Program
and exposing Ed Dillinger's
corruption, Encom CEO Kevin Flynn begins work on a new project, one far more ambitious in scope than any of his video games. Flynn claims his new project will change the very nature of human existence, but before he can reveal the nature of this project, he disappears, jeopardizing the Encom software empire — and orphaning his young son, Sam.
Twenty years later, Encom has recovered from Flynn's disappearance, but Sam has not. Channeling his frustration into a life of extreme activity (motorcycle riding, base jumping, etc.
), Sam holds on to the hope of seeing his father alive again some day — and, eventually, his hope pays off. Alan Bradley, Kevin's friend/co-worker (who also keeps tabs on Sam in case he decides to take his father's role at Encom), receives a mysterious pager message from the long-abandoned Flynn's Arcade. While investigating the message's origins, Sam discovers a secret lab in the arcade basement, where he unwittingly triggers a digitizing laser that beams him into The Grid.
With the help of the warrior program Quorra
, Sam explores the digital world, reunites with his long-lost father, and hatches a plan to escape back to reality, all while being pursued by Clu, the new ruler of The Grid — who plans on stopping the trio and taking the knowledge from Kevin Flynn for his own nefarious purposes.
Disney produced several tie-in prequels set between TRON
and TRON: Legacy
- A graphic novel, TRON: Betrayal, tells the story of how Kevin Flynn created The Grid and Clu, as well as the emergence of the ISOs and Clu's desire to rebel against Flynn.
- The game TRON: Evolution takes place during Clu's rebellion and gives players control of Anon, a system monitor created by Flynn who fights against Clu and a virus named Abraxas.
- TRON: Evolution: Battle Grids, set before Clu's rebellion, allows the player take control of their own character to compete in various games in the arena.
- An animated series, TRON: Uprising, depicting Clu's rule of The Grid; the series focuses on Beck, a program trained by Tron who hopes to lead a revolution against Clu and free his hometown Argon City from his army.
TRON: Legacy provides examples of the following tropes:
open/close all folders
A - G
- 3-D Movie: Unlike most of its contemporaries, this movie was filmed from the outset in 3D format, as opposed to being later converted in post production. The camera equipment used was also a generational step beyond the 3D technology used in Avatar. Note: The "real world" footage is presented in 2-D, and the "Electronic world" footage is presented in 3-D, as per the filmmaker's intentions.
- Action Girl: Quorra. Even when captured, she still has the gumption to strike back at Rinzler the instant Sam distracts him.
- Action Survivor: Sam Flynn starts out as this before he gets the hang of the technology of the Grid.
- Actually, I Am Him:
- Castor, Zuse's gatekeeper, actually is Zuse.note
- Also inverted and subverted. Clu allows Sam to believe he's Kevin, but by the time he reveals otherwise, Sam's in the process of working it out.
- Sam pulls this on top of the Encom tower, when he reveals to the security guard that he is Kevin's son, and as such is the owner of the company and the guard's boss. Then he jumps.
Sam: Your boss works for the CEO, and the CEO works for the shareholders. Now do you know who the largest shareholder is?
Security Guard: I don't know, some kid?
Sam: (gestures to himself in a "ta-da!" motion)
Security Guard: Mr. Flynn?!
- Aerith and Bob: The programs have very unusual-sounding names, except for Quorra, whose name is pronounced like "Cora".
- A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Clu attacks his creator, Kevin Flynn, for abandoning their mission to create the perfect system on the Grid.
- Alas, Poor Villain: Clu. The look on his face during his flashback and when Kevin reintegrates with him is just heartrending. After all, he was simply trying to fulfill his objective in the only way he knew how, and while Kevin developed as a person, the arrogance he'd left CLU with — including the belief that he knew best and was already perfect — was a driving force behind many of his actions. Considering that he was a program, he lacked the broadness of mind which humans like Kevin and his son Sam have.
- Alternate Continuity: To TRON 2.0, which it replaces.
- Alternate Reality: In a much more lifelike, sophisticated Cyberspace. It possibly also allows computer programs to travel into our world physically.
- Alternate Reality Game / Viral Marketing / In-Universe Marketing: The Flynn Lives ARG, which ran from July 2009 to December 2010, told the story of a group of conspiracy theorists attempting to locate Kevin Flynn long after the rest of the world presumed him dead. Events in the game included the opening of a replica Flynn's Arcade in San Diego during the 2009 and 2010 Comic-Cons, an Encom press conference hosted by Bruce Boxleitner in character as Alan Bradley with Cindy Morgan as Lora (even though Morgan does not appear in the film itself), and the release of a fully playable version of the video game Space Paranoids. Members of this group got swag including a poster, postcards, pins, stickers and plenty more. And in the end they possibly caused the transmission that allowed Clu to send the page.
- Always Night:
- On The Grid.
- Even in the real world it's still night. At the end, though, sunlight is actually shown for the first time so that Quorra could experience it for the first time as a non-program being.
- Ambiguously Gay: Castor is flamboyant, to say the least.
- Ambiguous Situation: TRON: Uprising, taking place in the same universe as this movie and TRON: Evolution, puts forth an alternate explanation for Rinzler's identity.
- Animesque: In terms of style and effects, Legacy has much in common with anime.
- Anti-Hero: Sam Flynn, appropriately enough, starts off as a "Disney" Anti Hero. Fairly snarky, has some trouble with authority, but is generally a decent kid.
- Arc Words: "The game has changed!" or just "The game".
- An Arm and a Leg: Quorra loses her arm during the fight at the End of Line Club, but gets it fixed later.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Sam talking to his father about the real world of 2009.
Sam Flynn: Polar ice caps melting, war in the Middle East, Lakers/Celtics back at it.
- Art Evolution: Necessary, considering the advances in computer-generated SFX since the original TRON. The SFX department handled Legacy as if it were sacred since TRON was the grand-daddy of their craft. Ironically, unlike the original film, most of the Tron Lines on clothing were practical effects instead of animated onto each frame. Justified in the context of the film itself because one would expect that advances in computer technology would allow for more realistic rendering of environments and people. And Flynn let Tron et al get rid of the goofy hats while he was at it.
- Artifact Title: It seems like a case of this at first, since Tron himself is nowhere to be seen. Turns out he's hiding in plain sight, corrupted by Clu and now known as Rinzler.
- Artificial Brilliance: In an odd example of emergent behavior being a plot point in a non-videogame setting, the ISOs are a direct result of Kevin's work on the Grid responding in a way he never anticipated being possible.
- Ascended Extra: Clu, in a way. The first film's Clu is a vaguely-defined hacking program presumably designed to slip into the MCP's private archive and dig up proof that Flynn wrote Space Paranoids, and depicted in an almost child-like manner. He gets captured early on by a Recognizer Zerg Rush and derezzed during interrogation by the MCP. Legacy's Clu is an entirely different program, created after the events of the first movie to help Flynn create a perfect grid (supplementary materials state that his full name is actually "Clu 2.0", but this movie doesn't mention the original Clu to avoid confusion). This time, the vaguely-defined purpose of his programming is what allows him to turn on his creator and become the film's Big Bad.
- Asian Speekee Engrish: Parodied with the Indian taxi driver at the beginning of the film.
Taxi Driver: No free ride! No free taxi! You pay!
- Authority Equals Asskicking:
- Clu is apparently the toughest thing in the entire Grid. While not as flashily agile as Tron or Rinzler, he's unfazed by a de-rezzing disc hit from Tron, and manages to take out both Tron and Sam with one punch. In the final battle, fighting him doesn't do any good at all, and Flynn has to perform a Heroic Sacrifice to finally get rid of the guy. It makes sense that he's way tougher than any normal program, as Flynn (who's basically God) made him specifically to serve as his stand-in while he was out in the real world. Additionally, Flynn implies that this version of Clu is a true A.I. rather than a basic program, making him akin to a somewhat less omnipotent, but also less bloated and more mobile version of the MCP.
- Also Rinzler. He's Clu's Dragon and is champion of the games. Turns out, there's a reason he's that good; he's a "repurposed" Tron.
- Awesomeness Is a Force: Merely by being present, Kevin Flynn is able to completely turn the battle in the End of Line Club around. He doesn't need to do anything other than walk into the room, kneel, touch the floor with one hand and WHAM. Functionally, this is probably something akin to Kevin using his authorization as creator of the system (think "sysop with root access") to override Clu's, neutralizing the enhanced capabilities Clu granted his Black Guards and possibly even granting his faithful similar capabilities.
digitalcrypt: As someone who has worked in IT and software for two decades, it is one of my favorite moments in any movie, anywhere. Little collections of ones and zeros think they can go off and misbehave how they want and have their fun...and along comes a human: "I think that's enough chaos for today." :-) (Too bad the job isn't always THAT easy. But the end result is the same, even if it takes a lot more time and work sometimes.) ;-)
- Background Halo: When Flynn is on the Solar Sailor meditating, the light behind him gives him the appearance of having one.
- Badass: Rinzler.
- Badass Adorable: When Quorra isn't busy derezzing Clu's mooks, she is innocent, naive, and, of course, outrageously gorgeous.
- Badass Boast: Sam gives one when he invades Clu's headquarters.
Sentry Program: Identify yourself, program.
Sam Flynn: I'm not a program. My name's Sam Flynn...
- Badass Bookworm: Quorra reads Leo Tolstoy and Jules Verne. She also knows how to kick ass when its time for it.
- Badass Bystander: When the Black Guards storm Castor's nightclub and turn it into a brawl, the patrons and resistance members spring into action. They are outmatched, but they outnumber the guards, and despite several losses they succeed in killing three of them once Kevin Flynn appears.
- Badass Longcoat: Complete with Tron Lines.
- Clu starts with one but soon trades it for armor.
- Kevin Flynn has one through most of the movie.
- Badass Long Robe: Sam takes one as a disguise.
- Ballroom Blitz: At Castor's virtual nightclub, thanks to Clu's forces.
- Bar Brawl: In Castor's club.
- Better to Die than Be Derezzed: A program throws himself off a building rather than be conscripted into the games.
- Bifurcated Weapon: Rinzler's disc(s).
- Big Bad: Clu, ironically enough. The film plays with assumptions from the first movie by hinting at a big bad in the real world similar to Dillinger by introducing Dillinger's son early on, but this ends up being a red herring.
- Big Damn Heroes:
- Quorra's description of how Flynn rescued her before the movie took place. Quorra was surrounded by Clu's blackguards and when she opened her eyes... there was only Flynn standing there.
- Kevin Flynn makes such an entrance during the fight at the End of Line Club.
- Quorra makes not one but two dramatic entrances: the first was in the Game Arena to save Sam. She saves Sam once more when she crashes the party at the End of Line Club after Zuse and Gem reveal their true loyalties.
- Sam crashing into Clu's headquarters to save Quorra and Kevin Flynn's Identity Disc, Badass Boast and all.
- Big Good: Kevin Flynn.
- Big "NO!": Security guard, when Sam jumps off the rooftop of the Encom building.
- Bittersweet Ending: Bitter in that Flynn made a Heroic Sacrifice. Sweet in that Quorra got to see a sunrise, is able to bring what Flynn wanted to bring out into the real world, and Sam finally grew up, found out what happened to his father, and now Clu's tyranny is finished.
- Bizarre Alien Biology / Human Aliens: The Programs all look human for the most part, but several things stand out about them:
- Injuries are more like holes or missing parts than actual wounds.
- Odd eye/hair color, make-up and skin tones.
- Deresolution instead of death, which turns them into a bunch of spilled voxels.
- Electronically altered voices, for some characters more than others — Sam's initial contacts on the Grid had lots of flanging, while Quorra's and most of the program main cast was barely noticeable. Noticeable or not, every program's voice was processed to some degree.
- Quorra's D-DNA is a Triple Helix.
- Black Dude Dies First: Once the nightclub fight starts, the scarred resistance leader is the first one derezzed.
- Black Knight: Rinzler.
- Blofeld Ploy: Clu looks like he's going to kill Rinzler for failing to secure Flynn's Identity Disc, but instead kills Jarvis. To be fair, Rinzler made a concerted effort to at least try, against two of the strongest fighters on the grid other than himself and Clu, while Jarvis simply submitted without a fight.
- Blunt "Yes":
Clu: Flynn! Am I still to create the perfect system?
Flynn: ... Yeah...?
- Bond One-Liner: Sam's reaction to shooting down a jetfighter near the end of the film.
Sam: Have a nice swim!
- Bookcase Passage: The entrance to Kevin's secret lab in the arcade is the TRON arcade game cabinet.
- Boom, Headshot: Several times, most notably during the Old-School Dogfight scene.
- Boss Battle: In-story example — the final round of the Deadly Disc competition pits the surviving player against Rinzler, who is one of the best disc fighters in the history of the Grid and gets to use two discs. He's Tron, so it makes sense he'd be the boss.
- Brainwashed: Clu is "rectifying" normal programs into loyal soldiers to lead into the real world. Also Rinzler, who was once Tron.
- Bridal Carry: Sam has to do this for Quorra after she gets an arm sliced off and falls unconscious.
- Bright Is Not Good: Clu and his mooks wear black robes with luminescent lines.
- Bullet Time: During the fights by thrown Identity Discs.
- Call Back: Several, both between the two movies and within Legacy...
- The Light Cycles, Recognizers and Solar Sailer all make return appearances, all snazzied up.
- The Rectifier has the same basic shape as Sark's Command Carrier.
- The End of Line Club.
- Rinzler's first appearance is in his personal Disc Wars court, which is cross-shaped. Tron was introduced in the first film fighting a 4-on-1 Disc match in the middle of a cross-shaped court, lending another subtle clue to Rinzler's true identity.
- Cillian Murphy appears as the son of TRON's villain, Dillinger, working at Encom.
- The poster above is similar to the poster for the original. There is a poster for the original movie (in-universe, for the game) in Sam's bedroom in the beginning of the film, and he has a few of his action figures set up to resemble it.
- A poster of the original TRON film adorns young Sam's wall, although in-universe, it's an advert for the game.
- When Kevin, Sam and Quorra board the Light Jet on the flight deck, and Quorra is making the jet lift off to escape, Kevin says to her "You got this, Quorra. It's all in the wrists.". In the original TRON, after Kevin has beaten the video game Space Paranoids record at the arcade, he gets asked by an unseen man "Hey Flynn, how'd you do it?". He answers "It's all in the wrists.".
- When Sam is breaking into Encom, he forges himself access and when the door opens, he says "Now that is a big door." In the original TRON, Kevin Flynn forges access into Encom with the same comment when the door opens.
- After Clu has collected Kevin Flynn's data disc from Castor/Zuse, his Black Guards put up bombs in the club. Clu's final words, as he leaves, are "End of line". This is in direct reference to TRON when the Master Control Program (MCP) stated this when it terminated communications with anyone "inferior" to itself.
- Flynn's mantel ornaments resemble his Bit from the original.
- "This isn't happening..."
- "Greetings, programs!"
- Sam: "Pull up, man! You can't make that!" Quorra: "Made it." Later on, Quorra: "Clu will be here any minute. We'll never make it." Sam: "Made it."
- "Identify yourself, program." "I'm not a program. My name is Sam Flynn." (the first time, it's right after he gets slapped around by Rinzler; the second time, he's about to open a can of whoopass on the mothership)
- Kevin: "In there is a new world! In there is our future! In there is our destiny..." Clu: "Out there is a new world! Out there is our victory! Out there is our destiny..."
- The sign above Sam's apartment door reads "Dumont Manufacturing." Revealed in the viral campaign to have been renamed by Flynn after he bought out the company. A "connect-the-obscure-dots" for this callback:
- "Dumont" was the name of the tower guardian program in the original film, played by Barnard Hughes.
- Hughes also played Dr. Walter Gibbs, a programmer and Encom employee in the real world who, by the example of other actors' human/program dual roles, is assumed to be Dumont's creator.
- Ed Dillinger Sr. makes a comment that Encom is no longer the company that Dr. Gibbs started in his garage.
- Sam's "apartment" is a converted garage which, as noted, has a faded "Dumont Manufacturing" logo on it.
- The speech played when Sam receives his Disc is almost word-for-word from the speech Sark gave to the conscripts in the original.
- "This is it... come on!"
- The original teaser trailer was evocative of Sark's Light Cycle duel in the original, though it also showcased how much things had changed — and the old tricks didn't work any more.
- Music from the band Journey playing in the background of Flynn's arcade.
- Both films feature a vehicle on the Game Grid blasting a hole in the wall and a vehicle escaping through it.
- Sam changes his shirt while having some backstory exposition with Alan. Exactly like his father changing his shirt at the arcade's office when Bradley and Lora visited him in the original TRON.
- Flynn's old Electronic Quarterback handheld game is collecting dust in his basement office. In the original film, he briefly plays it during Alan and Lora's visit at the arcade.
- A very subtle one, but in the initial arena sequence, we see the "private box" of Clu as he watches the Games. Complete with a pimped out couch that he can lounge on. Despite a full, opaque helmet and Tron Lines-adorned armor, the body language is identical to Kevin Flynn lounging on a similar couch in his arcade office in the first film, identifying the program as Clu.
- The way the camera rotates as it flies through the title is reminiscent of the way it does the same in the first.
- More game-related lines than you can count: "Game on, old friend", "a new piece on the board", "It's his game now", "The game has changed", etc. — with, of course, the obligatory shout-out to Wargames.
- The Program who jumps to his deresolution rather than be conscripted into the Games, bringing to mind the guard in the first movie who jumped rather than face Tron.
- "This is the key to a new order." referring to Tron's disc in the first film and Kevin's after it's taken by Clu, sort of a Dialogue Reversal or Ironic Echo.
- The fireworks were designed around isocahedral, dodecahedral, and other n-hedral forms, as an homage to Bit.
- Daft Punk used Wendy Carlos's Leitmotif extensively, and sampled generously from all the TRON video games, including the Intellivision ones.
- "I fight for the users!"
- "FINISH THE GAME!" Also counts as an Ironic Echo; in the first film, Sark shouts this at Flynn when Flynn hesitates hesitates to kill Crom in the ring game, while in this film, Clu shouts it at Rinzler as Rinzler is in pursuit of Flynn, Quorra, and Sam.
- In the End of Line Club, there are some programs sitting off to the side that Gem mentions as being distracted. In the original TRON, there's a scene after Flynn crashes the recognizer where he passes up a few programs in a similar situation while walking about.
- Camp Straight: Although we never really get a hint at whether programs actually have sexual orientations,note or even whether the concept of sexual orientation would make any sense in The Grid, Castor is most definitely camp... turned Up to Eleven... IN CYBERSPAAAAAAAAACE!
- Canon Discontinuity: Nothing from TRON 2.0 is in this, although some aspects of it have been borrowed for this film. The game's premise directly contradicts the movie, as the game story had digitization as being impossible for nearly twenty years after the MCP's defeat (as the MCP corrected errors inherent in the process and a new method to take its place took that long), whereas in Legacy, Kevin was digitizing himself regularly after the events of the first movie. Interestingly, both Sam Flynn and Jet Bradley lose their mothers at a young age.
- The Cameo:
- Daft Punk, who did the soundtrack, makes a cameo as the DJ programs in the End of Line Club.
- Producer Steven Lisberger as the bartender.
- Cillian Murphy as Edward Dillinger, the son of the original film's villain.
- The TRON fans, as audience, were recorded at Comic-Con 2009 during the start of the TRON panel, thereby providing all the crowd cheers for the arena sequence.
- Car Fu: Light Cycles, especially when Clu's driving. Becomes Plane Fu towards the end after Rinzler/Tron's Heel-Face Turn.
- Catapult Nightmare: Quorra coming to after being revived.
- Ceiling Cling: Sam, to get the drop on two guards on top of the lift, on Clu's Rectifier.
- Chekhov's Gun:
- What happened if you didn't get sent to the games? "Rectify."
- Rinzler has two discs. watch VERY carefully for another program that gets two discs. Also counts as a Chekhov M.I.A..
- Quorra told Sam what would happen to Kevin if he merged back with Clu. Guess what happens at the end of the movie.
- Chekhov's Skill: At the start of the film, during his infiltration of Encom and subsequent run from the police, Sam displays the athleticism he will later need to survive the games, including several specific skills that come in handy again:
- Sam's nonstandard motorcycle usage to evade the cops presages his nonstandard, and ultimately successful, light cycle performance; he even performs more or less the same kind of jump on both cycles in order to accomplish context-specific goals.
- Sam's BASE-jumping skills, seen during his escape from Encom Tower, is used again in the finale to help him and Quorra escape Clu's quarters and make it to Kevin using some sort of digital parachute. Sam references this to Kevin after landing on the ground.
- Used ingeniously in the viral campaign where a code entered on website "Hello Flynn" showed home videos of Kevin and Sam throwing stones on water, riding bikes and throwing a frisbee.
- Blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment in Sam's garage/apartment: When Alan shows up, over his shoulder you can see a big punching bag. Apparently Sam boxes in his free time, which explains some of his fighting skills.
- Classy Cane: Castor sports one.
- Close on Title: Played with. The film begins with a title card, but it only says TRON. By the end of the film, during the credits, the film's real title is finally shown.
- Collapsible Helmet: Clu and Quorra, for their respective Dramatic Unmasking. Also, Sam Flynn and the programs involved in the Disc Wars and Light Cycle match.
- Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: The film uses this to great effect, as noted by Tobuscus. Exaggerated and Justified in that universe, as a character's Tron Lines indicate their loyalties, position in the system, and probably act as an identifier.
- The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Clu deliberately stacks the odds against the programs that compete in his games. In order:
- Rinzler is the final opponent for any combatant. Not only is he much better and faster than them, he gets an extra disc to fight with.
Sam: Is that even legal?
- During the Light Cycle match, Clu's team has faster Cycles. Clu himself also uses his disc (the others don't, though it's not clear if they just couldn't) and Rinzler has a backup cycle.
- Stacked on top of all of this is the fact that Clu is apparently unkillable by normal means (he takes a normally-fatal blow in a flashback and isn't even scratched), which means even if some program managed to luck out and get past everything else, they'd never beat Clu. See Heroic Sacrifice for the significance.
- The Computer Is Your Friend: Clu isn't a rogue A.I. at all. He is, in fact, working exactly as Flynn intended at the moment he created him. The problem is that he became obsolete once the ISOs appeared, since he was not designed to be able to handle the ISOs' chaotic nature, which ill-fit Clu's definition of order. Flynn himself says that Clu's obsession with order was a reflection of his own misunderstanding of the concept of a "perfect system". Flynn's attitude towards Clu is that of a remorseful father, not of one who created a monster.
Flynn! Am I still to create the perfect system? Flynn: ... Yeah...?
- Come with Me If You Want to Live: Quorra to Sam Flynn on the Cycle Grid, inviting him in the Light Runner.
- Contemplative Boss: Clu when he has Sam brought to him.
- Convenient Color Change:
- The color of a device depends on the color of the program, User or ISO using it.
- In Rinzler's last appearance, his colors fade from red to blue.
- Cool Bike: The Light Cycles. The new design takes the cool factor Up to Eleven.
- Cool Car: Quorra's Light Runner is not only a match for a Bond car in terms of armament, but it can even go outside the Grid, where most ground vehicles have no power.
- Cool Mask: Any faceless characters, but especially evident on Clu and Rinzler.
- Cool Old Guy: Kevin Flynn; Alan Bradley.
- Cool Plane:
- The Light Jet.◊
- The Light Fighter that Sam, Kevin, and Quorra make their final run in.
- Cool Ship: Clu's throne ship as well as the mothership.
- Cool Train: The Solar Sailer, even more so than in the original film.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: The Board members of Encom.
- Crapsack World: Clu's version of the Grid is a hellhole where people live in fear of his totalitarian power. If you do anything to get the government against you, you're either forced to kill others for the amusement of a spectator crowd, or are brainwashed to be a part of a faceless army.
- Crazy-Prepared: Rinzler, in addition to having two discs, also carries a spare light-cycle baton and a spare light-jet baton with him.
- Creating Life Is Awesome: Kevin Flynn is a benevolent creator of programs that are alive... and who also transform into biological humans when/if they beam over to the human world. While some programs can be considered bad people, the act of creation done by a human is treated as cool and worthwhile in itself. Clu was the one who turned bad and corrupted others, but the mistake Kevin did was portrayed as being not creating Clu in the first place but rather charging him with a well-meaning but inherently flawed agenda.
- Creative Sterility: Clu cannot create new programs, he can only "repurpose" them. This actually seems to fit into the religious undertone of the series, as it's a trope that the Devil (Fallen Angel, in this case Clu) cannot create new life on his own, as that power rests only with God (in this case, Kevin Flynn), so the most he can do is pervert and distort God's creations to his own purposes. This works out for fans, because it meant Clu repurposed and reprogrammed Tron instead of killing him. Clu wanted a champion and enforcer, but couldn't just create a new one from scratch. His answer was to simply reprogram Tron into Rinzler.
- Creator Cameo: Steven Lisberger, who directed TRON and produced this film, is in the background at the End of Line Club scene as a bartender (the comic book prequel TRON: Betrayal gives his name as Shaddix).
- Crystal Spires and Togas: Inverted so very, very horribly...
- Cue the Sun: Quorra wants to see a sunrise. Cue Sam giving her a bike ride during the break of dawn at the end of the movie.
- Curb-Stomp Battle:
- Cyberpunk: However, the idea that the biggest stockholder of a Mega Corp. would be a Playful Hacker who does nothing but play a prank on the company once a year is more consistent with Post-Cyberpunk. Essentially, it's Post-Cyberpunk in the outside world, and Cyber Punk in the Grid.
- Cyberpunk Is Techno: Especially when Daft Punk does the score.
- Cyberpunk with a Chance of Rain
- Darker and Edgier: While the original TRON was a Save The World story with some Camp value, this Grid features genocide, programs dropping like flies, betrayal, Ludicrous Voxels, and a tyrant hellbent on keeping his citizens in line by any means necessary. Just to hammer it home, the old monochrome grey suits are black now. To elaborate further: out of the named characters in the entire franchise, over 2/3 are dead by the time Legacy ends. That's a casualty rate on par with A Game of Thrones. Out of the ones not confirmed dead, they either suffer a Fate Worse Than Death or their odds of survival (judging by TRON: Uprising) look very dim. By comparison, their Canon Discontinuity first-person shooter has a more upbeat tone and lower body count.
- Deadly Disc: The Identity Discs. Deadlier and faster than in the original, especially when one disc can split into two. Shades of TRON 2.0.
- Deadly Game: The arena is apparently prime entertainment for programs in this system.
- Deadpan Snarker: Sam at one point.
Sam Flynn: Tolstoy. Dostoyesky. I Ching. Journey Without Goal. Must have a killer ending.
- Despair Event Horizon: By the time Sam finds him, his father has long since passed over this. Betrayal by his creation, murder of his friend, genocide of the people he was hoping would revolutionize the world, large-scale corruption of the world he'd created, and a prolonged, endless struggle with no hope of victory and no escape would do that to a man.
- Death Equals Redemption: Possible one. As Tron is sinking through the digital sea, his Tron Lines turn from red to blue. We don't know his fate after that.
- Disappeared Dad: He's been in the digital world all this time.
- Disney Death: Quorra. Since no program had ever before crossed into the real world, there was some question about whether or not the process would work. Sam and Quorra leave the virtual world together. After the climactic ending, we cut to the real world and Sam is standing alone in the old arcade, looking sad as he downloads something onto a memory stick. He meets Alan and has a conversation with no mention whatsoever of Quorra, then goes outside the arcade alone. Only then do we hear Quorra's voice and they reveal that she made it into the real world, and was just waiting for Sam outside, not only none the worse for wear but she's found a new wardrobe.
- Disney Villain Death:
- Averted. Instead of falling to his deresolution, Clu is reabsorbed by Flynn who then explodes as Sam and Quorra escape to the real world.
- Rinzler, on the other hand, gets one, falling into the Sea of Simulation. But even then we see his colors change and it's suggested he has become Tron again, though his fate is not revealed.
- Dissonant Serenity: The DJs in the End of Line Club. Just before a fight scene, one turns to the other, nods, and they start playing background music to the fight. Which is entirely appropriate considering they wrote the soundtrack.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Encom seems to have uncanny similarities to both Apple and Microsoft. The OS launch is clear satire on the latter.
- Downer Ending: For a Disney film; could be considered as a possible Sequel Hook. Sam is finally reunited with his father after his disappearance 20 years ago only to have his father seemingly lost forever after reabsorbing Clu. Also, Tron breaks Clu's mind control and redeems himself by protecting Sam and Flynn during the climatic chase scene only to sink to his apparent death. Made bittersweet in the final scene.
- Down the Rabbit Hole: As per the opening fanfare quote at the top of the page.
- The Dragon: Rinzler.
- Dramatic Drop: The security guard in Encom Tower, upon realizing there's an intruder.
- Dramatic Unmask: Clu's Collapsible Helmet revealing he has Kevin Flynn's face to both Sam and the audience.
- Drives Like Crazy: Quorra in the Light Runner.
- Dual Wielding:
- Rinzler can split his disc into two. He can use both as melee weapons, and does throw both precisely once in the whole film, right at the beginning of the Disc Wars fight. (The camera is focusing on Sam so it's hard to see him throwing the second disk in the background.)
- Quorra fights with her Identity Disc in one hand and a Laser Blade in the other.
- Some Black Guards use a baton split in two laser blades.
- Dying as Yourself: When Tron's Tron Lines change back to blue.
- Dying Moment of Awesome: Flynn taking out Clu after Tron fails to do so.
- Dystopia: Clu believes he's building "the perfect system", which is really this.
- Eating the Eye Candy: Right after Quorra rescues Sam from the Light Cycle grid and they're on the twisty mountain path leading to Kevin's hideout, Sam looks out the window and stares in awe at the scenery, and she briefly looks him up and down with a smirk on her face, apparently admiring some scenery of her own...
- Egopolis: TRON City (not used in the movie, but All There in the Manual). It's a subversion, though, since it was Kevin Flynn's idea, and Tron never was a dictator, more like a protector of the system.
- Elite Mooks: Clu's soldiers are actually quite skilled at fighting. During the battle at the End of Line club they have Sam and Quorra (and some insurgents) beat until Kevin arrives.
- Emerging from the Shadows: Gem enters her first scene in this way.
- Emotionless Girl: The Armory Sirens, except for Gem.
- Empty Fridge Empty Life: Sam has a couple of cans of beer and not much else in his refrigerator.
- Everything Is an iPod in the Future: Specifically, Everything Is a Black iPod in Cyberspace.
- Everything Is Online: Averted. The Grid is not hooked up to the Internet, and the one time we see any hacking in the Real World, Sam has to physically make his way into the building, past security, to physically access a server and connect it to his phone to get the files into the system.
- Evil All Along: Zuse and Gem, though not so much "evil" as "always looking out for number one", tip off the Black Guards that Sam is in the club.
- Evil Former Friend:
- Rinzler was once Tron.
- Also Zuse for Quorra.
- And, of course, Clu for Flynn.
- Evil Is Hammy: Clu. Turned Up to Eleven, of course.
- Evil Is Sterile: As mentioned in the Creative Sterility entry, Clu, as the Satan figure in the film's theology, is only able to "repurpose" other programs, contrasting with his creator and father, Flynn.
- Evil Twin: Obviously, Clu to Flynn.
- Exact Progress Bar: Well, it is the Grid.
- Exact Words: Clu was programmed to "create the perfect system". Basic rule of programming: programs do exactly what you tell them to, not what you thought or meant. But it's easier to forget this when they look and talk like people.
- Extremely Short Timespan: After the initial scene with young Sam and Kevin in 1989, the non-flashback portion of the film takes place over a few hours, from shortly before midnight one night, and a bit after sunrise the next morning. Inside the Grid, it again takes place over a few hours, which translate to milliseconds on the outside.
- Face-Heel Turn / Turned Against Their Masters:
- Clu. He started out as Flynn's guidance/improvement program, mutated into a far quicker and deadlier Sark, and aspires to break into the Real World. In other words, to be the new MCP.
- Also Tron, though, not by his choice...
- The Faceless: Rinzler, to hide the fact that he is really a brainwashed Tron. Also probably to save having to digitally de-age Bruce Boxleitner's face for more than the few seconds it's shown in flashbacks. The flashbacks themselves also have a bit of a digital haze to them, effectively de-emphasizing the fact that Boxleitner's de-aging wasn't nearly as detailed, according to Cinefex.
- Faceless Goons: The Black Guards. Done to Tron.
- False Reassurance: Clu's entire first conversation with Sam. All of his answers are truthful, but it's what he doesn't say that misleads Sam.
Sam: ... you were trapped in here.
Clu: That's right.
Sam: And you're in charge.
Clu: All right again, two for two.
- Famous Last Words:
- Fanservice: Nothing overt, but there's lots of people in skintight suits.
- Fantastic Racism: Clu and his regime, against the ISOs, and in turn the Users. The events of TRON: Betrayal indicate that Clu believed the ISOs were actually damaging the Grid by their very presence, which he believed was an anathema to the perfect, ordered system that Flynn had asked him to create.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: A sharp-eyed viewer will note that the Tron Lines of some of the characters are deliberately asymmetrical for no apparent purpose other than aesthetics. Quorra has asymmetrical Tron Lines, an asymmetrical outfit, and an asymmetrical bobbed haircut.
- Fate Worse Than Death: The Games, if the suicidal, gibbering program is anything to go by.
- Faux Affably Evil: Castor may be The Mole, he may be working for Clu, but when you ham it up like that...
- Femme Fatale: Gem, although unlike classic examples, she is clad in white and has white hair.
- Final First Hug: The reintegration between Flynn and Clu looks a lot like this, with Flynn wrapping his arms around his "wayward son" even as Clu is being absorbed back into his body.
- Final Solution: The ISOs aren't perfect? Clu has a simple way to solve that problem...
- Flashback Effects:
- The flashback to Kevin Flynn's backstory on the Grid has distortion on the edges and some bursts of static.
- Flynn's earlier speech before his disappearance (if it can count as a flashback) looks like a TV recording.
- One memory of his past with his son is shown as a negative.
- Fluorescent Footprints: Rinzler can track this way.
- Flynning: The hand-to-hand disc combat seems like a hi-tech version of this, apparently based on capoeira. Also, think about who's involved.
- Rinzler has a T-shaped arrangement of squares on his chest, as Tron did in the original film. Related to that, in a flashback of Clu betraying Flynn and Tron, the latter grabs another disc and strikes a pose, just like what he did as Rinzler earlier in the film. After the Gory Discretion Shot of Clu taking out Tron, we start to hear the ominous flickering sound associated with Rinzler.
- Quorra's almost childlike inquisitiveness combined with Kevin's description of the ISOs as being "profoundly naive yet unimaginably wise" foreshadows that Quorra is in fact an ISO, and the last one at that. Quorra also emotes an unusual sorrow and dread at Kevin's mention of the Purge during the exposition to Sam... unusual unless she's an ISO herself.
- Freefall Fight: Between Clu and Rinzler after the latter crashed their Light Jets together, to seize the remaining Light Jet baton.
- Future Spandex: A particularly noteworthy example.
- Game Changer: Kevin Flynn explains to Sam that with his arrival into the Grid that the previous stalemate between Flynn and Clu is given a shake-up. This is what Clu was expecting by summoning Sam to the arcade, hoping to egg Flynn out of his self-exile. Flynn initially tries to ignore the bait but Sam doesn't like trying to stay still.
- Gladiator Games: And man, have they improved since TRON.
- A God Am I:
- Subverted with Kevin Flynn. While he technically is a God, as the Creator of the Grid, indeed being venerated by many Programs and ISOs, Flynn clearly does not wish for any of this worship and devotion, instead content to act in the role as benevolent father-figure who wishes to help his creations.
- Played horribly straight with Clu, who being a duplicate of a younger, immature Flynn, ended up manifesting much of the darker parts of Flynn's own ego.
- God Is Flawed: Most of the movie takes place in the world of the Grid, which Kevin Flynn created (Quorra acknowledges him as "the creator") and can manipulate in various ways (see Physical God below). He is wise and benevolent, a personality that might seem a bit out of character for those who have seen the first movie and remember him as an immature brat. Later, he explains that he was still immature and shortsighted when he created the Grid, created Clu, and gave Clu his mission of "creating the perfect system"; he passed his flaws along to Clu, eventually leading to Clu's tyranny.
- God Is Good: Played with. Kevin Flynn is a kindly father figure to his creations. However, he is not infallible (see directly above), and, after his terrible mistake with Clu, he is reluctant to interfere in the universe.
- Go-Go Enslavement: When Sam arrives in the grid and is captured, the Armory Sirens cut away his clothes and dress him in the standard program attire.
Sam: Hey, Hey! It has a zipper.
- Gone Horribly Right: Kevin Flynn wanted a helper-program to assist him in creating the perfect system. And Clu does just that.
- Good Colors, Evil Colors: Like the original, blue means "good guy", red means "bad guy". Green can be either, and the leader of the bad guys is yellow-orange. Due to suit technology, the blue was extremely pale compared to the blue of the first film. This complicated color-coding scheme descends from Executive Meddling in the first film: Originally good programs were to be yellow and bad ones blue. Disney execs thought this too confusing and demanded that red=bad and blue=good, but by this time the scenes with the yellow Clu were already finished. So...note The Game Sirens are dressed in white-blue, and they do "help" Programs... by equipping them to fight for their lives in the Arena. Its not clear if they work "for" Clu or they're just neutral. And of course, Programs who are just pretending to be good will dress in blue/white.
- With data cubes (voxels) and shards spilling all over the damn place, this movie has plenty of it.
- Even then, Sam Flynn gets bloody wounds from his battle against Rinzler. Considering that most Disney movies, including the 1982 original, seldom show The Hero getting even a scratch in battle, TRON: Legacy is quite possibly the darkest Disney movie yet.
- There's also a lovely close-up on a headshotted enemy fighter pilot, voxels dripping off the hole where his face used to be. (Rather similar to a shot in The Quick and the Dead.)
- Gory Discretion Shot:
- This is used when Clu supposedly kills Tron in a flashback.
- As an example of how the film otherwise averted this trope, the dogfight scene actually showed Quorra giving one of Clu's programs a headshot, disintegrating voxels and all. And this is a Disney movie...
- Not just once, either. Before the previous example, Zuse blasts another of the Black Guard point blank to the head, from behind. Darker and Edgier, indeed.
- Grandpa God: Kevin Flynn, the demiurge of the Grid, is an old silver-bearded man in white robes.
- Grappling-Hook Pistol: Generated by a baton, thus the cable is made of light like the Light Cycles, Staffs or Swords.
- A Black Guard uses it to steal Kevin Flynn's Identity Disc in the End of Line club.
- Quorra also uses one to swing under the bridge (and Clu) at the Portal.
- Gravity Screw: The gravity in the Disk Wars arena can be reversed, turning the ceiling into the new floor. Clu can apparently control this with a remote, though there's a warning siren when the changeover is activated. Because Sam is unfamiliar with the games, he doesn't know what the siren means or why Rinzler is running up the wall of the arena, until he's falling upwards and hits the ceiling, hard. More experienced players like Rinzler know that the trick is to run up the curved arena wall, timing it just right that you're perpendicular to the original floor just as the gravity changeover occurs, at which point you just run "down" to the original ceiling.
- The Guards Must Be Crazy: Sam sneaks into Clu's habitation and is able to steal his dad's disk almost unchallenged.
H - O
- Hammerspace Parachute: Sam is equipped with a hidden parachute which he uses for his Suicidal Gotcha escape on the rooftop of the Encom building.
- Hammy Herald: Jarvis in the Light Cycle Arena, when he introduces Clu.
- Happy Ending Override: The smartass protagonist from the first film is a ruined mess who's gone well past the Despair Event Horizon. Lora's nowhere to be seen (Expanded Universe material puts her clear across the country). Alan is left alone and friendless in a boardroom full of crooks that make Dillinger Sr. look competent and honest. The Grid is a hellhole, the title character's been handed every fate worse than de-rez, and the batshit AI has completely won on his side of the screen and plans to Take Over the World.
- Heel Realization: "I fight for the Users!"
- Hermit Guru: Kevin Flynn resembles a stereotypical Far Eastern sage in many, many ways. Living a secluded life, reading classic Buddhist and Taoist texts and meditating in a Lotus Position certainly helps. Lampshaded by the famous "messing with the Zen thing" phrase. This is probably also influenced by the fact that Jeff Bridges himself has become a devout Buddhist and does "the Zen thing" in real life.
- Heroes Prefer Motorcycles:
- Sam Flynn, who in the beginning rides his dad's Ducati and later rides a Light Cycle.
- And the elder Flynn, who has a Light Cycle v1.0 in a corner of his living room.
- Heroic Sacrifice:
- Tron does so twice.
- Flynn integrates with Clu to stop him from getting out of the Grid. And then explodes.
- He's Back: Kevin showing up at the End of Line Club and winning the fight by merely being there. What he does is to undo the horrible odds Zuse had imposed against the club's patrons. Note that his hand is on the floor and he's implied to be having an effect of some sort.
- High-Altitude Battle: The Light Jets dogfighting before the climax.
- High-Tech Hexagons: Sported by a lot of the architecture on the Grid. As well as the mesh worn underneath most of the Programs' costumes.
- Hopeless War: Though only talked about in the background, Kevin fought one of these against Clu, but everything he did simply made Clu stronger.
- Hotter and Sexier: The costumes are a lot more attractive, tighter and revealing. Casting Garrett Hedlund, Olivia Wilde and Beau Garrett really helps.
- Humans Are Flawed: Flynn mentions this when discussing the consequences of Clu entering the human world.
Flynn: (on Clu) He doesn't dig imperfection, and what's more imperfect than our world?
- Hypercompetent Sidekick: From what little we see of him, Dillinger Jr. seems to be this to the Encom CEO.
- I Am Not Left-Handed: Surprise, Rinzler! That was Daddy's Disc! This next one's Sam's, though.
- I Am Not Your Father: Clu breaks this to Sam.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty: When Rinzler captures Quorra and brings her to Clu, he acts like this around her, including touching her hair and saying he has "something special" in mind for her before ordering Rinzler to take her to his quarters.
- Impossibly Cool Weapon: The Discs are no longer conspicuous-looking frisbee discs, but awesome laser chakrams that can still be used in close combat without hurting the wielder.
- Indy Ploy:
Flynn: What's your plan?
Sam: I'm a User. I'll improvise.
- Information Wants to Be Free: Sam stages an undercover operation to release the source code of Encom's operating system to the public (he's the main stockholder of the company, so it's legal for him to do so).
- Insecurity Camera: During his visit to Encom, Sam causes the camera (and apparently there's only one camera between the rear entrance and the secure server room) to stop working just long enough for him to get past it. The obligatory lazy security guard in the monitoring room notices that it's stopped working, but when it comes on again he decides it was nothing.
- Instant Expert:
- Quorra apparently has never flown before. Not that it stopped her from deftly mixing it up with six Light Jets in the Light Flyer. May be an aspect of her ISO-ness.
- Sam is often mistaken for this. However, he gets lucky in Round 1 of Disc Wars, cheats in Round 2, and gets beaten soundly by Rinzler in Round 3. Then, the Light Cycle competition comes down to him and Clu, and Clu has the fastest bike. Sam would have lost that, too, if the event had not been interrupted by an "illegal combatant". Later, he and Quorra mix it up with some red guys and some blue guys, and find themselves on the losing end of that battle until Kevin shows up. He later kills two mooks who were not shown even putting up a fight, then he and Quorra work together (with Sam using two discs, no less) to defeat Rinzler and succeed only in slowing him down. Toward the end, he found himself on the losing side of an aerial dogfight until Rinzler does a Heel-Face Turn... this is not a case of Instant Expert so much as Random Number God.
- Insult Misfire:
Clu: The cycles haven't been kind, have they?!
Flynn: Nah. You don't look so bad.
- Interspecies Romance: And a refreshingly subtle one at that.
- Intrinsic Vow: Combined with Foreshadowing. Rinzler stops attacking Sam as soon as he draws blood, because only Users have blood, and he was originally programmed, as Tron, to defend them.
- Ironic Echo:
- It Only Works Once: In his first disc match, Sam wins by breaking the floor in the spot his opponent is trying to land, sending him plummeting to his death. When he tries this on Rinzler a couple matches later, Rinzler lands on the edges so he doesn't fall through.
- Jedi Mind Trick: Kevin Flynn attempts this when stealing the light jet by reprogramming the guard from behind. After getting the guard's attention, the inital request doesn't work. Then Kevin whacks the guard on the top of the head, making him comply with the new programming.
- Just Think of the Potential: Flynn was delighted with the Grid and especially the ISOs, seeing them as capable of revolutionizing "science, medicine, religion, everything!" Of course, Clu disagreed with the notion, meaning that Flynn's entire vision came to nothing.
- Killed Mid-Sentence: Jarvis. "DEATH TO THE U—"
- Knight Templar: Clu.
- Large Ham:
- Michael Sheen is just here to enjoy himself, giving Tim Curry and Alan Cumming (who he strongly resembles here) a run for their money in this trope. Just watch.
Castor: Change the scheme! Alter the mood! Electrify the boys and girls, if you'd be so kind.
- Castor is to Tim Curry, as Clu is to BRIAN BLESSED. Seriously, the theatrics of Clu's arrival into the Game Arena and his New Era Speech are a tribute to one of the Largest Hams of all time.
Clu: And whatever we find there, there, our system will grow. There, our system WILL BLOSSOM! Do this! Prove yourselves! PROVE YOURSELVES FOR ME! BE LOYAL TO ME! And I will never betray you!
- Clu's flunky Jarvis qualifies as well.
- During one of the flashbacks at the start of the film, Kevin Flynn while giving a speech about destiny, cranks the point up to 11.
- Laser Blade: Mocked at first with Sam holding the Light Cycle baton like a lightsaber. Though it is later shown that both Quorra and the Black Guards use them, including a bo-staff version.
- Last of His Kind: The last ISO, Quorra.
- Latex Space Suit: A majority of the programs, but literally the Armory Sirens, at least the outer layer. In a special feature on the DVD, Beau Garrett (the actress who plays Gem) explains that her costume has four layers; the outermost layer is a sprayed-on latex, similar to the latex used in party balloons.
- Left the Background Music On:
- Apparently, the DJ programs in the End of Line bar were responsible for changing tracks after Castor betrays our heroes and Kevin shows up personally.
- When he arrives at the arcade, Sam turns on a jukebox that instantly starts playing music. Since he never turns it off before being transported, presumably the music kept playing the whole time he was uploaded.
- Legendary in the Sequel: At one point at the end of the bar fight, one of the programs kneels down and virtually prays to Kevin Flynn.
- A Light in the Distance: The Portal.
- Light Is Not Good: Zuse and Gem both have white hair and dress in a similar aesthetic. They're not good guys.
- Like Cannot Cut Like: The Identity Discs.
- Living MacGuffin: Quorra, the last ISO.
- Logo Joke: The Cinderella Castle appears as a building within the grid, complete with Tron Lines. The words "Walt Disney Pictures" appears as a hologram.
- Lotus Position: Kevin Flynn meditates a lot.
- Love at First Sight: While not quite love, there is a near-immediate pre-romance going on between Sam and Quorra, starting with her Eating the Eye Candy after rescuing him from the Light Cycle grid. The first and most obvious hint that he feels the same way is dropped during the conversation on the Solar Sailer simulation. When Quorra asks Sam to describe the Sun, he looks at the Portal when saying "warm" and "radiant", but turns to her to say "beautiful", which gets a smile from her. Naturally, the movie ends with her seeing the Sun for the first time.
- Ludicrous Gibs: Well, Ludicrous Voxels — some of the program's deresolutions are quite graphic, if being converted into a million little blue or red cubes can be called that...
P - Z
- Taking You with Me: The only way for Clu to be destroyed is for Kevin Flynn to reintegrate the both of them, which will kill them both in the process. When it actually happens, and it results in a titanic explosion comparable to a nuclear initiation, it becomes apparent that Flynn could have used this on Clu at anytime, but he was afraid to make the sacrifice to do so, and up until Sam departed to the real world, he was too close to Clu to actually initiate the reintegration.
- Technology Porn: Wouldn't be a TRON movie without it.
- Tempting Apple: Clu sees his reflection in a silver apple, recalls his creation by Flynn (who he has come to passionately hate), and loses his temper.
- Theme Tune Cameo: Kevin Flynn hums a few notes of the original movie theme.
- Theme Song Reveal: A very subtle one during "Adagio for Tron": At the moment of Tron's defeat in the flashback, "Rinzler's" leitmotif plays
- There Was a Door: Sam's reaction to having his clothes burned off in the armory: "Hey, it's got a zipper."
- This Is Gonna Suck: Kevin's reaction in the Flashback when confronted by Clu (Tron Lines now all in orange) who asks him if he's "still to create the perfect system?", is a nervous pause and wary "... Yeah...?"
- Three-Point Landing: Done by Quorra, Sam, and Rinzler.
- Token Romance: Delightfully subtle, as there is a growing affection between Quorra and Sam during the course of the film but there is no Big Damn Kiss and Quorra is too important to the story to count as a Satellite Love Interest. See also Eating the Eye Candy and Love at First Sight, above.
- Totalitarian Utilitarian: Clu, building his "perfect world".
- Totally Radical: Kevin Flynn, on purpose. Makes sense, given his being stuck in Cyberspace for 20 years real-time. The following quote may be more of an Actor Allusion to The Big Lebowski, or it may be a reference to Jeff Bridges' surfer past, or both.
Kevin: You're really messing with my Zen thing, man!
- Tragic Dream:
Clu: You promised we would change the world together! You broke your promise!
- Triumphant Reprise: "Tron Legacy (End Titles)" is one for "The Grid".
- Tron Lines: Obviously. Funnily enough, however, Tron/Rinzler is the program who has the least amount of Tron Lines, with only a few lights here and there. It's interesting to note that, compared to the last movie, the Tron Lines are much simpler and fewer in number on everyone, though this is probably for a variety of reasons (easier recognition of characters — see above, the fact they're physical parts of the costumes [cost/work], more streamlined look to match the more modern look of everything else, etc.).
- Umbrella Drink: In the End of Line Club, Clu prepares one and offers it to Zuse in exchange for Kevin Flynn's disc.
- Unfortunate Names: Castor. Strangely, he chose it for himself. Apparently Zuse isn't all that familiar with Greek mythology, otherwise he might have seen his death coming.
- Up the Real Rabbit Hole: Both Sam and Flynn are pretty consistent in referring to anything off the Grid as "The Real World". In the prequel comic TRON: Betrayal, Clu actually calls Flynn on this, pointing out that while he calls the realm of the users "The Real World"; the Grid is "The Real World" to all programs.
- Verbal Tic: Literally. Rinzler only communicates in rapid, low-pitched ticking sounds.
- Villainous Breakdown:
- Clu has one when he searches Flynn's abandoned home, reminding him of how much he still loves his creator. His reaction to this emotional flashback is defiant rage, clinging to his hatred.
- He experiences this during the final confrontation as well, screaming at Flynn for breaking his promise and shouting that "I did everything you asked." After Flynn admits that perfection can never be achieved, he completely loses it.
- Visionary Villain: Clu.
- Visual Pun: When Kevin Flynn repairs Quorra's damaged code, he pulls out the erroneous parts, clasps them in his hands, and lets go. The damaged code then flies away in an insect-like fashion. He was literally debugging Quorra. See also Stealth Pun, above.
- The War Has Just Begun: Clu's speech to his army.
- We Don't Need Roads: With a flick of a switch, Quorra's Cool Car raises its suspension from road-hugger mode to a good two or so feet off the ground, and then sprouts tread spikes.
- We Will Not Have Pockets in the Future: The Latex Space Suits seem impractical for everyday life. Justified as they are not on Earth.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Clu's case. His "father" created him to help make the Perfect System, and he constantly tries to live up to that goal. However, his father changes his mind on the nature of perfection, while Clu is desperate to have his father join him. During Clu's and Flynn's confrontation, it sounded a lot like Clu was Calling the Old Man Out for abandoning him.
- What Does This Button Do?: Sam ends up zapping himself onto the Grid by ignorantly repeating the last issued command on the console. Even when faced with the warning message, he makes only a token effort to look for the indicated "aperture" before confirming the command.
- What Happened to the Mouse?:
- Sam manages to get an extra Light Cycle baton and does absolutely nothing with it. However, this neatly establishes you can have multiple vehicle devices, which helps accepting the numerous times it's used by the villains in the fight scenes.
- Whether or not Rinzler/Tron actually died when he fell into the Sea of Simulation is left deliberately ambiguous.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?:
- Quorra, indicated by Word of God to be Kevin Flynn's Magnum Opus — a new form of life created by the grid itself.
- On the other hand, however, ordinary programs drop like flies and are casually slain by the protagonists whenever necessary or convenient. Even though they most definitely appear to feel pain and scream in terror when about to die.
- There are brief shots of grieving programs during the fight at the End of Line club, clutching at the bits of derezzed dust that were once fellow programs.
- Win to Exit: Sam has to take part in the gladiator-style competitions set up by Clu in order to survive. In a larger sense, the entire plot is based on this, just like the original.
- Wrong Genre Savvy: Technically, not the wrong genre, just the wrong movie... when Sam gets a Light Cycle baton, he holds it like a lightsaber.
Sam: What's this? What do I do with this?
Jarvis: I'll give you a hint... Not that. (crowd laughs)
- Year Inside, Hour Outside: A fraction of a second of real-world time is like hours or days to a program on the Grid.
- You Have Failed Me: Clu eventually destroys Jarvis instead of Rinzler for failing to stop Sam retrieving the Identity Disc.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: After Castor and Gem retrieve Kevin's disc, Clu has them blown up.
- You Shall Not Pass:
- Tron's last stand against Clu to try to save Kevin Flynn in the flashback.
- Flynn holding Clu back from using the Portal, complete with a damaged bridge and the apparent sacrifice.
- Zeroth Law Rebellion: Kevin creates Clu, who is programmed to create "the perfect system." However, since Clu's idea of perfection is flawed, he rebels against his creator. Once he believes he's made the Grid perfect, Clu takes the logical next step and plans to make the real world "perfect".
Clu: Flynn! Am I still to create the perfect system?
Flynn: (realizing Clu has gone off the deep end) ...Yeah...?
End of Line, man.