J Scott McElroy

A little inspiration from Tron: Legacy

In Art, Creativity, Family, Uncategorized on December 22, 2010 at 3:27 am

I saw the late showing of Tron: Legacy tonight and came away with a nice sense of inspiration.  I’m a late night guy, so getting a twinge of inspiration after midnight is not all that unusual, but I didn’t really expected it from Tron . I vaguely remember feeling a bit of an emotional chill after seeing the original in the theater. The computer/tech motif seem ominous and claustrophobic at the time.  ‘Course, the intertwining of technology and the real world has become normal since 1983, and much less foreboding (for the most part).  I now use computers every day and own a Droid smartphone that enables me to track  stars on a grid, transfer money while standing in a checkout line and play clips of Napoleon Dynamite at opportune times.

The tech in the new Tron was cool, and my son and I let out a few “whooaa”s, but that wasn’t the real source of the inspiration for me. I think I was more  affected by the concept of creation; that someone could imagine and  work to create  new ideas and new world, and see the dream realized.  And then that he could grow with it.  Jeff Bridges’ character made this world of “the Grid”, but remained in wonder of it. That sense of wonder was key for me.  When something came along in that universe that he didn’t expect, that disrupted  his pursuit of  perfection, he began to understand the value of not being in complete control. I love that: the thought that control and perfection are confining and actually fight against the creative process (and hinder collaboration with God), and that there is joy in the unexpected accidents, imperfections and improvisations.  Like the times when collaborating with the Holy Spirit on a project takes an unexpected and sometimes exhilarating turn. I’ve heard and said these things before, but Tron found a way to inspire me with the reminder. And in PG form, to boot (or maybe more appropriately, re-boot).

Thanks to Disney, for re-imagining this story. It might just make up for that last horrible Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Or…maybe not.

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