THE BOURNE DOUBLE-TAKE BREAKDOWN REVIEW: Last in this marathon is “The Bourne Legacy” which stars Jeremy Renner (The Avengers, American Hustle), Rachel Weisz (The Mummy, Constantine ), Edward Norton (The Incredible Hulk, Fight Club), Corey Stoll (Non-Stop, Midnight in Paris), Stacy Keach (American History X, Nebraska), and Zelijko Ivanek (Hannibal , Argo). It is written (screenplay) and directed by Tony Gilroy (Duplicity, Michael Clayton). Set at the climax of “The Bourne Ultimatum”, this story follows a man named Aaron Cross (Renner) who is a part of a Black Ops operation known as Outcome. While in training, the program Jason Bourne was a part of known as Treadstone and Black Briar have been revealed during the events of “The Bourne Ultimatum”, leaking all of its files and personnel. Because of this, being how Treadstone is an evil program, the CIA wants to save themselves from an oncoming lawsuit by cutting off all of their attachments to the program as well as any others like them, including Outcome. And by cutting off their attachments, this means that they are going to kill off everyone that is a part of the projects. Aaron Cross is able to escape this onslaught and is on the run from the CIA, taking a woman by the name of Dr. Marta Shearing (Weisz) along the way to help him.
What the heck did I just watch? Before I go into why I would say something like that I want to mention that I didn’t have any expectations for this film. Seeing how previous reviews for it gave it a low rating, I wasn’t expecting anything monumental, but at least something watchable. And although this movie was interesting, it should have never been made. Plain and simple. To clarify what I mean, I will give you a short and sweet explanation: I did not know what the movie’s direction was for half of the film. Because of how this movie’s plot is a mixture of pros and cons, I will get all of the non-plot pros out-of-the-way. The first pro to this film has to be the acting. Jeremy Renner is no Matt Damon, but he held up his role the best that he could with the script he was given and I applaud him for it. The same goes for the whole cast. Everyone did a great job in my opinion, especially Edward Norton who is one of my favorite actors. Next is the action scenes, which were awesome. There were quite a bit of memorable action scenes in this movie (maybe because there weren’t many) with fantastic choreography. I think my favorite action part is where Shearing is trapped by two policeman and Cross gets her out of it (no spoilers). Finally, the last non-plot pro is the locations. These guys just know how to film on-location, offering amazing shots that you can just take a picture of and put it in a calendar. Now onto what really hindered this film: its story. I will take you down the road I went, straight from the beginning. I popped in my Blu-ray of the film, very keen on the presentation at hand. Once the film started, I was in awe. The beautiful landscapes of the snowy mountains and to find Aaron Cross there, not talking for ten to fifteen minutes was surreal. Of course, they cut it to the CIA and what they were planning, but that also added a great essence to this film, with it picking up the pieces of the last film even though it was set during that time. What I am getting at here is the first forty minutes or so was the best moments of the film, mainly involving Aaron Cross in the mountains. It felt different, pushing away from what the first three Bourne movies were which were all chase. The rest of the film was different from the ones before it, but once Aaron got out of those snowy mountains, the greatness of this plot melted away. As I watched this, I felt the story diminishing into something that is so construed that I don’t believe the writers knew where they were going. These movies were based off of stories, and it has the same man who wrote the screenplays for the first three films writing this one, as well as directing it, but he should’ve left it at Jason Bourne. I believe that this film lost me around the hour and fifteen minute mark (an hour before it ends). From there, it goes many directions, throwing out any tension that it had. I felt that the CIA wasn’t really trying, and at times I didn’t even know who the big villain was. It didn’t even feel like an action movie or a Bourne movie anymore. They tried to turn to a more sci-fi side and it didn’t fit with the atmosphere that the previous movies established. Once it got towards the end (about five minutes before it ended), I checked how much time was left and when I found out I was shocked (I even whispered yelled at the screen, don’t want to wake up the sleeping people in my house, you know?). Mainly because there were so many plot holes left open and that they threw the plot into several directions. I really can’t explain it more than that without spoiling. Overall, this movie had a fantastic start, only to dwindle down to something I couldn’t comprehend, leaving behind its beginning plotlines to switch out with new ones. I would not recommend Bourne franchise fans to watch this film. FINAL SCORE: 60%= Burnt Popcorn
Here is the trailer: