While fantasy films all require some suspension of disbelief, they’re nonetheless required to operate logically within their conceit’s framework. That’s a rule ignored by TRON, which sets up a premise – a computer programmer gets beamed into a computer, where he discovers an Orwellian world populated by people-like programs – that seems to make up its rules as it goes along. In Steven Lisberger’s 1982 cult classic, disgraced computer whiz Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges), in an attempt to prove that his former boss Dillinger (David Warner) achieved power by stealing his video game ideas, gets sucked into the mainframe of Master Control, an evil Big Brother program bent on global domination. What follows is a Wizard of Oz-style fable in which Flynn finds himself battling malevolent computer programs in a blue-green digital realm of pixilated cities and deserts, yet it’s a fantasy so divorced from any fundamental understanding of computers that it requires wholesale brain-shutdown. Master Control exhibits sentient emotion (at one point, he says he’s “disappointed” in Dillinger), once in the computer Flynn teams up with a sovereign program TRON (Bruce Boxleitner) who resembles his human “user,” and then the hero fights other Space Invaders-style enemies with glowing discs and light cycles while, at one point, healing himself by drinking “energy” water. In a computer. Wha? No doubt TRON was prescient in suggesting computers as a shared universe into which we literally enter and inhabit, but in its literal form, the story plays like a nonsensical fairy tale from an age that didn’t understand almost anything about technology, thus relegating it to embarrassing artifact. More problematic still, the film is simply a dreadful bore in terms of pacing (sluggish), character (one-dimensional), pioneering CG effects (crude) and action (pitiful), a tale so sloppily written and clumsily staged that its plot is driven more by clichéd adventure-film dictates than by basic cause-effect relationships. Without the rosy filter of nostalgia, it’s a virtually unwatchable virtual-reality saga.