Tron (1982) – The Ultimate Predictive PROGRAMming
“The grid. 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, I got in.” -Flynn
One of the elements I’ve sought to analyze here is the convergence of technology and esoterica, which is a connection generally overlooked. Despite modernity’s religious obsession with technology as the god of its own hands, the mythological nature of techne is largely unknown and forgotten. Having reached a point of godlike abilities, the power and exponential growth of technology is both wondrous and ominous. Disney’s 1982 Tron is directly relevant to this topic, though it’s often only remembered for its advanced special effects (for the time) and spectacular art direction, while the deeper elements of its story have remained hidden. In this article, I intend to highlight the many revelations Tron gave us about the future, especially in light of the open sourced information we have seen in the last few years revolving around DARPA and the Pentagon’s black projects.
As most of us are now approaching two decades of familiarity with the Internet, it becomes fuzzier and fuzzier trying to recall those bygone days when we needed to find an actual phone line to make a call. It is even more difficult to think of the close of the 70s and the early 80s and what must’ve been in the minds of most viewers in 1982 after seeing Tron. As a child of the 80s, I recall seeing it as a young guy, yet nothing stuck with me other than its surreal mix of German Expressionism and Atari-style visuals. Lurking below all of this was actually a highly sagacious form of predictive programming and acclimatization, something now evident upon review. Disney has long been united with the Pentagon and of more recent alliance, the Siemens Corporation, in implementing the latest technological advances for its films and theme parks. I have highlighted this dark alliance here, detailing the revelation of its vast psychological warfare prowess.
Since 80s films are some of my most popular articles, upon reviewing Tron (after many years), and having analyzed the recent sequel, I was struck by how much more was subtly revealed in the original. Since the film references Artificial Intelligence, the Internet, virtual worlds, game theory and video gaming, the shadow military establishment, and much, much more, we can begin to gain a picture of the reality of the whispered notion that the technological elite truly are 30-40 years ahead of the public. Again, it is crucial to keep in mind as you read and perhaps review the film, you are watching something that was in theaters in 1982! While people were playing Pac-Man and Atari arcade games, the establishment tech elites were integrating the already-existing Internet across the US to form the emerging Skynet tech grid we are in 2014 going under. Long before The Matrix, a similar plot had already described the heart of the coming “new world order.”