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PRODUCT DESIGN

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URBAN

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CINE-POD

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GENERATIVE ELEMENTS

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MATERIAL OPERATIONS

The splits in the foamboard narrow down the width of the one piece giving it the opportunity to bend, fold and double up to give it a simplistic wave like representational beauty.

RESEARCH & RESEARCH & DESIGN IDEAS RESEARCH & DESIGN IDEAS DESIGN IDEAS
REPEAT ELEMENTS

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JOINING OPERATIONS

A cut in a circular piece of paper allows it to have an advantage of flexibility which lets it curl and wrap into a cone with ease giving it symmetry and the power to bear a load.

Cold Cold Dark Matter: An ExplodedExploded View Cold Dark Matter: An View Dark Matter: An Exploded View Cornelia Parker Cornelia Cornelia Parker Parker 1991 1991 1991

Beijing Prada Building (Tokyo) Beijing National Stadium (Birds Nest) National Stadium (Birds Nest) Prada Building (Tokyo) (Tokyo) Beijing National Stadium (Birds Nest) Prada Building Herzog & Herzog & De Meuron Herzog & De Meuron Herzog & Herzog & De Meuron Herzog & De Meuron De Meuron De Meuron 2008 2003 2008 2008 2003 2003

After realising not meet the reAfter realisingrealising that my previous design would not meet the reAfter that my previous design wouldthat my previous design would not meet the requirements of draw several quick sketches. quirements of the brief I decidedIto draw severalbrief I decided to draw several quick sketches. quirements of the brief decided to the quick sketches. I drew one side one side of the I drew a basic rectangle to representa basic rectangle to represent one side of the building I drew a basic rectangle to represent of the building building and then add then progress into a and then and then add different which coulddifferent patterns whichinto a then progress into a add different patterns patterns which could then progress could facade. facade. facade.

EXTENDED FINAL FINAL DESIGN SYSTEMS FINAL DESIGN DESIGN

Moulded funnels made from a natural substance like plaster rather than paper are much better at bearing loads but if two are brought together and joined at the smaller ends then they become a greater structure with added durability and beauty.

ELEVATION 1:100 1:100 ELEVATION ELEVATION 1:100

SPIDER SPIDER CLAMP DETAIL 1:5 CLAMP DETAIL 1:5 SPIDER CLAMP DETAIL 1:5

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SOCIAL CONDENSER

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PROTOTYPER, DARKLY

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PARADIGM

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INTIMNI TRIDA

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Uses & Areas 1 - Intimate Suites 2 - Gym 3 - Mens Changing Room 4 - Womens Changing Room 5 - Lounge/ Waiting Area 6 - Gym Reception 7 - Utility Room 8 - Laundry Room 9 - Security 10 - Gardening Equipment Room 11 - Staff Room

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Ventilation Detail 1:20 V.1 V.2 V.3 V.4 V.2 Aluminium Grill Aluminium Partition Hinged Internal Ventilation Flap Aluminium Glazing Channel L.11

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Glazing Detail 1:10 G.1 - Argon Filled Triple Glazing w/ Micro Mesh G.2 - Glazing Fixing Attached To Steel Box G.3 - Neoprene Membrane G.4 - Steel Box Section w/ Polyurethane Insulation

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Reinforced Concrete Floor Slab Enclosed Roller Blind Timber Baton Painted Plaster Board

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Cross Section Detail C.1 - Steel Frame Stairs w/ Concrete Footings & Landings C.2 - Reinforced Concrete Structural Light Well C.3 - Station Entrance Railing C.4 - Market Stall

Long Section Detail

L.11 - Sloped roof Comprising of Timber Batons, Plywood Deck, Rubber RoofL.1 - Reinforced Concrete Pile founda- ing Membrane & Gutter tion L.2 - Concrete Bubble Deck L.3 - Load Bearing Reinforced concrete Wall w/ Polyurethane Insulation L.4 - Steel Mesh Partition (To Allow Growth of Organic Screen) L.5 - Argon filled Multi- Directional Glazing Partitions L.6 - Fixed Timber Baton Ceiling L.7 - Reinforced Concrete Walkway w/ Glazed Balustrade L.8 - Internal timber Stud Partition L.9 - Sustainably Sourced Treated Oak Panel Facade L.10 - ETFE roof

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ARCHITECTURE

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STILL (LIFE)

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PHOTOGRAPHY

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GRAPHICAL COMMISSION

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GROVER & ALLEN
ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2011

GROVER & ALLEN TEAM
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JD WETHERSPOON

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PALLETABLE

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WORK IN PROGRESS

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HAS SCIENCE FICTION TRAVELLED FURTHER INTO DYSTOPIA IN THE PAST 28 YEARS?

Dystopia: An imaginary place where people lead dehumanised and often fearful lives. [merriam-webster.com, 2011] Utopia: a place of ideal perfection especially in laws, government, and social conditions [merriam-webster.com, 2011]

Scene 1. The year 1926 was the first time when science fiction leapt from literature into modern film (the use of sound along with moving pictures). The first science fiction feature to do this was Metropolis. Metropolis’ used it’s narrative to explore the social structure and setting of architectural design and organisation. These became highly overlapped. Within one level of Metropolis, it initiates a continuing strand of cinematic science fiction where imagined places, future cities and in particular composed settings are set for its narrative action. Even where the towering ‘figures’ of a cityscape offer as a little as a mere backdrop, the backdrop is never entirely neutral. At the very least, its visibility adds a layer of cultural meaning and influential reference to events in the story. The cinematic visions of Sci-Fi and it’s utopias and dystopias tend to reflect on social and political questions. Even if the social and political issues are not approached within the film, Sci-Fi cityscapes constantly invoke cultural meanings. An example of invoking a cultural meaning would be how scientific progress is associated with urban decay, nuclear holocaust, and other obsessions. Sci-Fi film was most definitely not passive when it had the ‘invitation’ to take the opportunity to imagine/ create cityscapes and use their criticism to show contemporary modes of social organisation. “Obvious role of architecture in the construction of sets (and the eager participation of architects themselves in this enterprise), and the equally obvious ability of film to ‘construct’ it’s own architecture in light and shade, scale and movement, allowed from the outset for a mutual intersection of these two ‘spatial arts’“[Vidler, 1993. p44] Scene 2. In the essay, ‘Race, space and Class: The Politics of Cityscapes in Sci-Fi Films’ by David Desser, he gives the feeling of criticism of genre by setting out to use a historical overview of cities in Sci-Fi cinema. He begins by analysing the representation of a social class division that can be represented in and upper city/ lower city divide, which, is found in the text Metropolis. Desser’s essay about Sci-Fi cinema cityscapes closes with the film Blade Runner, this is a film that has a statement about the divide of power and their relation, he suggests that Blade Runner is an intertextual rework of Metropolis in significant ways in that it brings a

focus on to the political questions of both race and social class.

Fade In: Premise
Through investigation the main focus will be on how films have progressed into showing the world in a more dystopian view or if they are trying to see the light at the end of the tunnel, creating a world that would be a more pleasant to live in. Although the main comparison is between Tron (1982) and Tron: Legacy (2010), Blade Runner (1982) and The Matrix (1999) will also be referenced to show where the film industry is/was heading in terms of creating dystopian films. Are science-fiction films becoming more or less pessimistic about the future? Do the social concerns and scenery have an active role in creating a dystopian/ utopian film? “‘visions of the future’ in the films he discusses are deeply pessimistic, and that the dystopias of contemporary science fiction ‘mirror the profound social decay we are experiencing’” [Kuhn, 1990. p16] In science fiction, a place or setting assumes a special significance. Science fiction was initially introduced in literature and it is here that Sci-fi films trace their roots back to their ‘parent’ of creating a utopian/ dystopian place. Sci-fi literature is about non-existent places, impractical, idealistic schemes generally for social and/or political reform. Sci-Fi’s attitude towards these places shifts between idealism and pessimism, the most common plot being where something or someone intrudes causing disruption therefore starting or creating the chain to becoming a dystopian novel. Within film and especially within sci-fi films a place where the story unfolds carries an expressive weight, as its function is to create the setting as well as give emotion there by creating a mise-en-scene. At the same time, the place acts as a ‘pure’ vision, a display for the accomplishment of the art department and special effects.

Blade Runner (1982) is a typical example of one of the 1980s ‘grunge-pits’. Loosely based around Philip K. Dicks ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep’, Blade Runner is about a ‘cop’ specialised in tracking down Replicants (Humanoid), he has recently retired but is forced back into his job due to six exiled Replicants escaping from an off-world colony and returning to earth. The architecture in this film is the dominating factor in setting the dystopian vibe into place. Firstly we are met with the ground level, these multicultural street scenes are dominated by a vast amount of East Asian imagery and we get the sense that this is considered to be the economically less fortunate/ working class area (Fig.1). Everyone that can afford to has moved off planet, this emulates the “White Flight” era where ‘whites’ were moving to the suburbs, out of the urban community where the minorities of the population were constantly increasing in size.

buildings around (Fig.2). The only signs you get of possible luxury is when you see Dr. Tyrell’s apartment at the top of the city, this supports the notion of a divide between upper and lower classes (as seen in Metropolis).

the then thriving economic power of Japan and it’s purchasing of New York real estate. This lead to anxiety over immigration and its increasing influence on the USA, threatening the ‘American’ way of life. This social aspect could come from the development of cities like Los Angeles over the past century that were becoming mega-cities as they had no recognisable central point and are actually like a mini-state with several ‘centers’. This worried particularly the working class with the thought that the government was losing control over the city due to it’s large gang related problems and how they could not easily be tackled because they had no real center to congregate.

Fig. 2

“It is as though we were training ourselves, in advance, for the stereotypical dystopian rigors of overpopulation in a world in which no-one has a room of their own anymore, or secrets anybody cares about in the first place” [Jameson, 1992. p11]
The ‘art’ of advertising is a constant background here its particularly manipulative being the size of buildings and also being incorporated onto blimps, which replicates similar feelings of being in Times Square or Downtown Tokyo. LA is unceasingly dark and rainy, this spectacle tells us there is an abundance of pollution and environmental damage, the elements that display this is that there are no trees or greenery and real animals have become rare so they are replaced by replicants. Blade Runner does not have an evident sign of authority or government other than the local police, the absence of authority makes the city fairly anarchic, it’s the different end of the scale to other visions of the future such as The Matrix and the totalitarianism of Big Brother in Michael Radford’s representation of Nineteen EightyFour (1984).

“If archaeologists can infer something of the character of a society from a few shards, certainly visions of the future created by large groups of highly skilled people armed with advanced technology, financed by millions of dollars, of behalf of giant corporations, intended to make handsome profits by enticing the cost of expensive tickets from masses of consumers, must reveal something about the character of our own society. Of course they mirror the profound social decay we are experiencing. Obviously some of them are also meant as warnings” [Franklin, 1990. p31]
Scene 3. The essay ‘Cities on the Edge of Time: The Urban Sci-Fi Film’, by Vivian Sobchack considers the cityscapes in SciFi films as ‘poetic images’ with an affective power which binds the phenomenon of an actual urban experience. In her historical and phenomenological description of Sci-Fi cityscapes, Sobchack revisits a long tradition of visualisations of cities in Sci-Fi films, following a shift from the utopian cravings of the 1920s and 1930s to the ‘grunge-pits’ of the 1980s and 1990s. She notes that the use of special effects in cinematic experiences and the application of effects such as morphing and warping in the digital aspect have the capacity to lesson the familiarisation of space which, in turn, affects the unstable experience offered by a number of recent Sci-Fi films.

Fig.1

“Social concerns and trends are reflected in mass media such as film and television” [Kuhn, 1990. p15]
Los Angeles, 2019 is most certainly not an icon of careful progressive planning as a result of this there is a sense of chaos and disorder that has evolved through time due to it’s irrational style and international imprint. The main design thoughts to the buildings that they have only been updated with the times by randomly attaching the new bits of building, showing the evolution but also the devolution as stated above there is no evidence of a well thought out plan. If it were to be of a utopian standing then the city would most likely contain wider streets, signs of luxuriousness and would also be clean, however the streets are claustrophobic and due to the narrow lanes it emphasises the height of the

“the 1970s and early 1980s has been a period of unending and deepening social and economic crisis, and visions of the future projected in Anglo-American SF films during this period have been overwhelmingly pessimistic” [Franklin, 1990. p20]
The social and economic crisis that appears in Blade Runner is from the fear of an expanding Asia, distinctly

The Matrix is based around a notion that the world that we live in is in fact a simulation of how our world used to look before the war with machines started. It is said to be unknown as to who actually started the war but it is know that it was humans who blackened the sky of the ‘real world’. This is because the machines relied of solar energy, now however (as shown in the film) our once glorious city is a derelict wasteland/ desert and the city of the machines now thrives after incubating

human bodies to harvest their alternative energy source (bioelectric energy)(Fig.3).

dramatically as although the recordings show only the dark scenes there are many lighter scenes that have been ‘washed out’ by using a green filter, which gives everyone a green tinted grey suit/ dress and removes all the real skin tones leaving it dull and ‘unreal’. The only time you get the true skin tones, fabric colours and a sense of reality is when the characters are either out of The Matrix or you are in the home of The Oracle. Another aspect is the architecture in The Matrix that certainly adds to the feeling of dystopia both in and outside of The Matrix. The city within the computer simulation is made to not look like any particular city much like Blade Runner (Fig.6)
Fig. 7
Fig. 4

Fig. 9

M.C.P catches Flynn during his attempted hack and decides to pull him into the virtual world by digitally breaking him down through a data stream and reconstructs him in the internal program. During his time here Flynn discovers that the M.C.P is making ‘life’ on The Grid (virtual world) just as, if not more, miserable than in the real world. Both worlds only hope lie in Flynn and Tron’s (Tron = independent system security program) hands as they search to destroy the M.C.P to bring back order to both the real and virtual worlds. Most of Tron is set on The Grid and we don’t really get a look at the outside world apart from the beginning of the film and then small scenes through the film lasting 2 minutes approximately. The image that the viewer perceives of the real world is a dark one as filming is all done at night up until the last scenes. The colour scales we get in the real world consist mainly of blacks and greys due to the night shooting but we also get whites and small elements of colour like blues and reds. The whites come purely from the fluorescent lighting in the ‘Laser Room’ as the offices at ENCOM, the colours within come from parts such as the safety helmets in the ENCOM building, there is a rogue colour seen at around 8 minutes and 21 seconds there is a red lighting detail/ graphic on the ENCOM helicopter. This shows the link between the virtual world and the real world, as the two are currently intertwined due to Dillinger the M.C.P. The viewer sees a lot more colours in Flynns arcade and due to the laughter and enjoyment seen here they get the feeling that this is like a safe haven. On The Grid the colour scales we get are a mirror of the ones we get in the real world, the ‘sky’ is black, the buildings are grey/blue blocks and there are units of blues, reds and green, these colours are seen generally as light strips that appear on a programs ‘clothing’.

Fig. 3

“To be lifted to the summit of the World Trade Center is to be lift out of the cities grasp” [Jenkins, 2008. p179]
Other shots within the film aid the extreme high-angle by moving a little bit closer to the ground, we see either shots that look straight up at the skyscrapers that loom above (particularly the scene where we see empty shells raining down from the helicopter)(Fig.8) or straight down from the rooftops where we view the human activity below as though we are peering into an ant farm (Fig.9).
Fig. 6

Scene 4. ‘Future Noir: Contemporary Representations of Visionary Cities’, by Janet Staiger, Staiger takes a different path towards the questions of intertextuality and the cityscapes within Sci-Fi cinema. Staiger searches for the meanings to Sci-Fi’s virtual cityscapes not within the history of Sci-Fi itself or in modern society, but in the instances of the real-worlds urban social change, ‘utopian’ architecture and progressive town planning. Examples of work such as progressive town planning are the ‘Garden City’ by Sir Ebenezer Howard’s and ‘Radiant City’ by Le Corbusier, these are/ were imagined and designed with the thought of enriching peoples lives. In Stagiers essay, she discusses and identifies a series of iconographic patterns, which are culturally associated with utopian visions and are used/ quoted in the films, but with a level of irony. As such, ‘future noir’ films draw upon and quote from a library of cultural images of ‘progress’ in the cities, whilst at the same time express loss in faith at the idealism from which these images first came from. The cities of Sci-Fi films provide the settings and subject material for the narratives. They invoke craving for much better ways of organising their society, or they express fears about the decay, danger and degeneration in the public realm. They may even recycle or refer to images of the city from earlier forms of Sci-Fi. At the same time these spaces/cities are built as places for the viewer to enter and explore, as well as question the viewer.

The ‘message’ behind The Matrix is designed to look at how we live. We are born into a form of captivity, where CCTV is constantly watching our every move outside and in some cases inside our homes. We have rules, regulations all of which are set down by a more powerful being that we believe in as it is fed to us from the very start of our lives, such as the government or a religion. Thomas Merton (Author/ Poet) once stated “Propaganda makes up our mind for us, but in such a way that it leaves us the sense of pride and satisfaction of men who have made up their own minds. And in the last analysis, propaganda achieves this effect because we want it to. This is one of the few real pleasures left to modern man: this illusion that he is thinking for himself when, in fact, someone else is doing his thinking for him”.

Fig. 5

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“Science fiction films concerning fears of machines or of technology usually negatively affirm such social values as freedom, individualism and the family” [Ryan & Kellner,1990. p58]
Imagery that conveys these thoughts is in multiple instances within The Matrix. One particular image that comes to mind is where the human fields are first revealed to us, Neo is awakened in the ‘Real World’ to come face to face with colossal cylindrical ‘buildings’ each imprisoning hundreds upon thousands of human beings within individual pods (Fig.4). A little later in the film Neo is then subjected to looking at how the ‘City of the Real’ looks, which as said above, is a derelict space where the buildings have crumbled not too dissimilar in looks from the ruins of Sydney at the end of Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome (1985)(Fig.5).

“The apocalyptic imagination had already burst forth into film with images of catastrophe in all shapes – from the very likely thermonuclear holocaust to absurd projections of the human race being overcome by even the most harmless life forms” [Franklin,1990. p19]
Within these two stills and within the particular message behind The Matrix, it is put it into the category of a dystopian film. Following on from looking at the above an experiment was introduced to see if there was a ‘scientific’ way of supporting the ideology of The Matrix being a dystopian film. The length of time where a dark scene within the film occurs and ends will be recorded, then they will all be added together and divide them by the length of the film to receive a percentage. Altogether it was found that there is 1 hour 8 minutes and 23 seconds equaling to 55% of the whole film that shows dark/ gloomy footage. One may be thinking that this is a small percentage, which in that circumstance it is. But this percentage can be increased quite

“The city of Blade Runner is not the ultra modern, but the postmodern city… The city is called Los Angeles, but it is an LA that looks very much like New York, Hong Kong, or Tokyo. We are not presented with a real geography, but an imaginary one: a synthesis of mental architectures, of topoi” [Bruno, 2008. p178] “Beneath the haze stirred up by the winds, the urban island, a sea in the middle of a sea, lifts up the skyscrapers over Wall Street, sinks down at Greenwich, then rises again to the crests of Midtown… A wave of verticals” [Certeau, 2008. p178]
As Henry Jenkins similarly stated, here De Certeau seems to be fascinated with a false sense of totality/ seeing the whole that has been created by the extreme high-angle shot (Fig.7), a god’s eye view, giving the cityscape it’s unending sense of scale.

“Inviting us to marvel at the verticality of the urban canyon” [Jenkins, 2008. p180]

“films are seen either as mirroring attitudes, trends and changes in society (social preoccupations), or as expressing the collective psyche of an era” [Kuhn, 1990. p16]
The catalyst of social concern that’s indicated through Tron is how technology is moving ahead at an alarming pace, and how the workplace is becoming more cramped through the introduction of office cubes and also uninviting due to the lack of natural light that penetrates the general staffs workspace. CCTV plays a part in the underlying message in Tron, as it was between the 70s and 80s that CCTV was starting to be implemented into cities to aid the prevention of crime. However many people saw this as the start to the invasion of privacy, which relates to the ‘ever watching’ Big Brother from George Orwell’s classic book 1984. Another area of concern

Fig. 8

Tron (1982) is about a Hacker/arcade owner Kevin Flynn who is desperate to prove that a former employee/ co-worker Ed Dillinger, who now is a senior executive at ENCOM, in fact stole his best videogames to pass them off as being designed by himself. Flynn's efforts to reveal the truth however are disrupted by ENCOM's ‘all powerful’ megalomaniac “Master Control Program”. One night, the

is the emerging consciousness or our effect upon the environment. Starting around the late 70s and through the 80s, the news about what is happening to the planet is finally beginning to get through, after only being a small concern of the progressive times through the 60s and early 70s.

“we faced these forces as alien powers – which we ourselves had created – slipping out of our control and threatening to wipe us off the planet” [Franklin, 1990 p19] Political and social concerns in Tron: Legacy are about an anti-fascist movement as well as the challenging capitalism. The dictator that they rise up against is CLU; he is intent on raging a war against imperfection striving towards the creation of a perfect world. CLU has cleansed the whole system, which has left a desperate and miserable world. Flynn set him the task of creating the perfect system when they started “building Utopia”[Kevin Flynn, 55m19]. Flynn hoped to find control, order and perfection within the system; something that is vacant within the real world, he found this ‘perfection’ in the Isos (Isomorphic Algorithms) who had superior knowledge. He planned on bringing them back to reality before CLU intervened and destroyed them, as they did not fit in his ‘perfect’ system. The ‘message’ behind Tron is there is no way of creating perfection, especially not in a fascist way as it rids us of our humanity, our compassion/ humiliation in a social aspect and political aspect. The capitalism issue they are combating in the film, seen through the high-tech company ENCOM are changing there ethos, which used to be giving students/ schools and hospitals free or discounted software. This era has vanished due to the board of directors seizing control of the company after Kevin Flynn’s disappearance. This issue was particularly big during the 80s and was reflected in many films, however the matter is still quite major today as students cannot afford most of the software they need this results in a constant battle between the two over illegal downloading. “while reflecting a dreadful contemporary reality, can at least be critical of that reality. Alien (1979), Blade Runner (1982) and Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982) all explore the relationship between high-tech corporate capitalism…. the films are engaged in a debate about present day society” [Kuhn, 1990. p17 & 18] Much like the original Tron, the colour scales we get in the real world consist mainly of blacks and greys due to the night filming however we do get elements of the primary colours in clothing such as blues and reds. Upon The Grid the colour scale is exactly the same however there are a lot more whites as these are used for creating boundaries/ details, such as the sides of the ‘roads’ to the outlines and detailing of the buildings. Apart from the white detailing and due to the conditions Tron: Legacy is a dystopian film. The authority that we

witness in the real world is lacking as we only see it within security guards and a few policemen, on The Grid authority and control is extremely high as within the first minute of being on The Grid Sam is picked up by the ‘police’ as he is thought to be another stray program. The style of city in the real world has not changed much since the original Tron, the cityscape is still fairly horizontal rather than mainly vertical. The only building that seems to have changed is ENCOM, the fact that this is now referred to as the ENCOM Tower suggests that it is the most dominating structure in the cityscape, demonstrating it’s gain of more power over the city and the computer/ software industry. Upon The Grid the cityscape has changed a lot from its predecessor, as stated previously there is more detail allowing you to understand what each building is and the scale of the buildings are far greater. The heightened sense of scale is shown in several ways, dominating the cityscape there is a monumental spire like structure, which is central to the city as it is the controlling tower where CLU resides. Another way that defines the scale is after Sam, Kevin and Quorra visit a program called Zeus for help, they are seen in an elevator plunging down the side of one of the tallest towers, instead of crashing into the city level Kevin manages to access and open several service doors that lead below the surface before coming to a halt at the actual base of the tower. “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.” [Kevin Flynn, Tron: Legacy. Time: 30s-54s] Scene 6 As time has moved through the past 28 years, the science fiction world evidently has become more pessimistic. They all show a dystopian cityscape, which generally reflects the anxieties of the affluent, suburban, white middle class. Each views their immediate environment as dangerous, chaotic and unstable. However as time went on each put their own twist on the matter and displayed it in the most dystopian way that technology would allow them to. “the implications that films can be either reactionary or progressive; and that this is culturally important because films shape, as well as reflect, the ways we think about the world” [Kuhn, 1990. p18]

“Apart from attempting to stimulate something of the feeling of experiencing architecture, the recent developments in computer-aided design systems, together with the creative leaps of the imagination in the wake of Star Wars (1977), have opened up a whole new area for films on architecture” [Grigor, 1993 p. xxix]
Fig. 10

Architecture within the real world of Tron is no different to how a city looks today, there are a few skyscrapers in the cityscape with horizontal planning surrounding them, but it is the ENCOM building that is the most dominant structure, which emphasises their domination on controlling The Grid and in the computing software market off The Grid. The architecture on The Grid may be uncomplicated in that it is just a series of plain extruded blocks but even still there is an overwhelming feeling by the ‘buildings’ around. At several intervals from high-angled shots, much like those in The Matrix we see a maze like structure that covers a vast amount of the surface that seems to have no end across the screen (Fig.10). The size of the walls within this ‘canyon’ is expressed extremely well and in the most simple way, all you can see is a black background with thin white lines cutting through it showing where the walls start from the floor. To show the scale of them compared to a program we see the Light Cycles containing Flynn, Tron and Ram moving around the landscape (Fig.11). Conducting the experiment with Tron was a lot different from The Matrix. Tron is predominantly a dark film, 90% of the film is of dark scenes, and the remaining 10% of light scenes does not fully count for imagery containing natural light. 9.4% is where the film is shot inside of the ENCOM building and the light that we are seeing is the fluorescent lighting. 0.6% of the film (the last 54 seconds) is the only time that we actually see any sunlight, as this is the only time the sunshine really gives off the iconography of a fresh start and that everything is rectified in the world.

Fig. 11

Scene 5. Comparing the recent Tron: Legacy (2010) with the original Tron (1982) you can start to see significant changes in how the social concerns are follow a slightly different route, the architecture is more dominating, right down to the simplest item, the script. Sam Flynn is a rebellious 27 year old; he is haunted by the mysterious disappearance of his father Kevin Flynn. When Sam is told about a pager message from his father sent from the old Flynn's Arcade, he decides to investigate. Sam then finds himself transported onto The Grid, where he later finds Kevin who has been trapped in the virtual world for 20 years. With the help of Quorra (the last Isotope), father and son set out on the quest to reach the portal back to the real world. The virtual world created by Kevin now has far more advanced vehicles, weapons and landscapes; the only thing that stands in their way is CLU.

By the end of Tron it seems as though both the real and virtual worlds are entering a Utopian state as the M.C.P has been destroyed and all of the programs within are free to do what they have been programmed to do, also back in the real world Kevin Flynn has been instated as the head of ENCOM due to finding the file that showed Flynn as the true creator of the games. However if we refer back to Thomas Merton’s quote then it shows that the programs upon The Grid are not entering into a utopian world, as there is still have a level of control over them through the real world as they have been programmed by their users to do specific things, have a certain purpose. However in observation of both Tron and Tron: Legacy it is evident that Tron: Legacy has put forward a slightly more dystopian future than it’s predecessor. It carries similar if not the same values as the original but to put it in a darker state in terms of the story, the evidence is set out within the first scenes of the film as the world was thrown back into ‘chaos’ as Kevin Flynn had mysteriously disappeared due to being held hostage inside his own creation. His son ended up having to be raised by his grandparents, the loss of his father lead to him becoming a deviant and his father’s company performed a 180 degree turn from giving software away for free to charging extortionate amounts for it. The storyline for Tron: Legacy may be a bit more disheartening but where the film really shows off its thoughts on dystopia is through technological advances, particularly in CGI. The blending of the human form with electrical/ computer circuit symbols gives Tron an edge, showing that the integration of the two aids the film in giving it a bleak look on the future. The CGI also allows Tron: Legacy to have a lot more substance and detail in its visual representations. This allows it to show a more dystopian city with the use of lightning and dark clouds upon a black ‘sky’ compared to Tron’s plain black ‘sky’. Each film conveys that within the past 28 years it boils down to how and where technology is evolving. Technology seems to constantly be going wrong and turning against their creators (Tron, Terminator, The Matrix, Tron: Legacy). Technology is the main theme to a Sci-Fi film, so no matter where we are or how far into the future we go, the technology is going to be the key to creating a dystopian world.

Fade Out.
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