Movie Review: Jason Bourne

Score: 8/10

– Spoiler Alert! –

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It wasn’t the first session that was on today, but I had to see this movie on the day it was released. The trailer was extremely good and although I don’t like watching trailers (they always show the good bits), I couldn’t get enough of this one. Particularly the bit when Matt Damon floors his fight opponent in one hit 🙂 .

After filming the first three Bourne books, written by Robert Ludlum, Matt Damon passed when they offered him the role for the fourth instalment. He said that Bourne knew who he was now and the story had ended. Jeremy Renner took the role (and did a good job) whilst Tony Gilroy co-wrote the script with his brother and directed this movie. That movie had indeed nothing to do with the Bourne series and the reviews were very mixed. For me it was the pills (that took centre stage in The Bourne Legacy); they were never mentioned in any of the first three Bourne movies.

Matt Damon only returned to the screen as Jason Bourne as Paul Greengrass, director of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum, found a way to bring Jason back. The bigger-picture/storyline is believable, although there are a lot of ‘yeah right’ moments. This seems to be unavoidable in Hollywood movies nowadays. Greengrass has done an excellent job in getting everything on screen and the flow is perfect. Even the fighting scenes and chases are easy to follow.

Matt Damon is looking good, as per usual, actually looking extremely buff this time. The fact that he’s getting a bit older doesn’t mean he’s getting any less fit. Julia Styles plays Nicky Parsons again. The notable new faces are that of Tommy Lee Jones, very accurately portraying the grumpy old CIA director Dewey who is out to kill Bourne, and Alicia Vikander as Heather Lee, the CIA agent in charge of finding Bourne. I have mixed feelings about the role of Lee, as she, like Joan Allen as Pamela Landy in the previous instalments, is the only one that thinks Bourne is not back to cause damage. Was the role written for a woman to keep the feminist audience happy (this is after all the age of girl power), or is it suggested that women have a less aggressive streak, are more diplomatic, and/or see the best in people? I still haven’t made up my mind on this one, but neither seems like a good option to me.

Like I said, there were a lot of ‘yeah right’ moments. One of them being a miss in the make-up department. At some stage Bourne nearly gets strangled, but when he takes the cord off his neck there is not one mark in sight. Big faux pas, guys, you should read up on your forensic science. Excellent work on the other bruises though 🙂 .

The movie seems to be an endless stream of violence, from the beginning to the very end. All well thought out action sequences and the Las Vegas scene is quite spectacular (it was mentioned that they didn’t ask permission for filming this scene, so if anybody knows the truth, please let me know). There wasn’t a lot of blood visible throughout the movie, even when people are shot they keep moving with only ‘wet patches’ visible.

What bothered me was that there is absolutely no remorse for the taking of lives that happens left, right, and centre, at the hand of ‘the asset,’ played by Vincent Cassel. Yes, it is a hired killer that does the killing, but apparently he can put aside his emotion when killing, but not tuck away his lust for revenge on Bourne. And yes, I hear you say, it is after all a Bourne movie, but remember the first instalment, The Bourne Identity, where Jason Bourne fails his mission because he refuses to shoot a man in front of his children. That’s why we fell in love with him, because throughout the film his humanity became stronger than the killer they made him. That’s the sort of movie we need again, especially in this day and age.

I give it an 8/10 for the directing, cinematography, the special effects (chases) and for Matt being one of my favourite actors.

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