Thursday, November 1, 2012

Tron 30th Anniversary Screening

This is a report on the Tron 30th Anniversary Celebration held on Saturday, October 27.  This report will not be well-organized, I hope to rewrite it as time goes by and I think of more things to report, as well as having the patience to write it up.

1. The screening seems to have been put on by the fans without studio involvement.

2. Steve Lisberger, Bonnie MacBride, Alan Kay, Richard Taylor, Harrison Ellenshaw, Bruce Boxleitner and Frank Serafine were in attendance.

3. We also had Bill Kroyer, Art Durinsky, Chris Casady, Craig Newman, John Grower, Larry Malone, Josh Pines, Ken Perlin, and Kenny Mirman.

4. John Nelson had not even heard about the event, I think, and I only heard about it because Ken Perlin told me he was coming to town for it.

5. Bonnie MacBride told the story of how the film got into development.

6. Alan Kay told the story of the famous the Parc demonstration, the same one they gave Steve Jobs (the one where Steve got the idea for the Macintosh).

7. This was the second time I had seen the film, the first time was a cast and crew screening at the premiere.

8. When I was watching the film, I noticed odd things that I could not explain. Many lighting effects seemed to be gone, a lot of high frequency detail that usually had aliasing artifacts on it seemed to be filtered, a few scenes just seemed to be down two or three stops for no apparent reason. Many pops in the animation seemed to be fixed. The resolution of the computer world seemed weird to me, but not bad, just weird.

9. When the film was over, Josh Pines and Ray Feeney told me that this was a Blu Ray of Tron that had been projected, and that it had many "mistakes", which I kind of liked, fixed. This would explain most of the weirdnesses I saw. Apparently the studio sees no need to spend any money on this film, and there is no digital cinema master.

10. I think it is a little weird that they would project a blu ray at the 30th anniversary at the Chinese theatre, but if that is all that is available so be it. I thought it looked very good for a blu ray, and probably enjoyed it more not knowing what they were projecting.

11. However that invalidates the screening for one purpose I had for it, I wanted to compare my memory of the 70 mm original and see what held up and what did not. Seeing a stepped on Blu Ray does not permit me to do this.

12. Of the Abel work, I felt that in general it held up, some of it more than other parts of it, but overall it looked very good. I felt that Baily's abstraction portion also held up well.

13. The big mystery is why there are not more women in tight spandex to appeal to adolescent boys? What were they thinking? Cindy Morgan looks pretty good in a glowing neon jumpsuit, but she is on screen barely 20% of the film and is very chaste the whole time. A great opportunity for a neon bad woman in spandex has been lost and I am sure it cost them at the box office.

I will fill this report out as I think of more things.

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