The Bourne Legacy - It worked!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

'The Bourne Legacy' had a lot of problems even before filming started. First of all, Paul Greengrass did not agree to return as director. Worse, its main star Matt Damon said he won't be coming back without Greengrass. The Bourne novels still have a lot of stories to tell. And while it seemed so easy to replace the lead just like in those James Bond movies, replacing Jason Bourne is a bit problematic, if not weird at minimum. So what does 'The Bourne Legacy' offer? A great side-story to the great 3 films ... and probably more.

The story takes place in the middle of chasing Jason Bourne in 'The Bourne Ultimatum'. While the entire U.S. government is trying to contain Bourne, they were also trying to cover their tracks by trying to terminate all their other programs. Unfortunately for them, Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner) survived the attempted assassination. His fight for survival somehow leads him to Dr. Marta Shearing (Rachel Weisz), who worked on the program with Cross. She assists Cross in getting the key to his survival, which brings them all the way from the U.S. to the Philippines where the adventure ends... or probably start over.

Full disclosure: I am a fan of Jeremy Renner and I thought he was the best pick as Matt Damon's successor. He's had enough blockbuster hits (The Avengers and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol) so I was fairly confident that he can bring the Bourne franchise to a new direction. And he totally nailed it! 

I felt that there was too much talking and not enough action during the first hour of the movie. That sets it apart from the previous Bourne films. If Jason Bourne was the ultimate assassin, Cross was more of a toned down version. 

The final motorcycle chase scene shot in Manila was absolutely spectacular - though probably 10 minutes too long. Everything worked though. There was enough action to make the audience look forward to the next installment. The Bourne Legacy is definitely a great reboot to a great franchise.

Probably my only complaint: there wasn't enough Edward Norton in this movie!    

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