RELEASE DATE:July 29, 2016
MPAA RATING:PG-13 (for intense sequences of violence and action, and brief strong language)
SCREENWRITERS:Anthony Peckham, Christopher Rouse
STARRING:Matt Damon, Julia Stiles, Alicia Vikander, Vincent Cassel, Tommy Lee Jones
[divider]Ok, so Jeremy Renner didn’t work out as the new Bourne stand-in with the last iteration of the popular spy series. But hey, Matt Damon is still around, in good shape, and still a fine actor so why not bring the films back to where their bread was buttered? Honestly, I was excited to see Damon back in the drivers seat. New Bourne-centric adventures and more of that badass fighting style we all came to love in first few films I was all about it.
Although, I wanted so badly to love this movie. I just couldn’t help but feel like I’d been there and done that while watching the story unfold in this chapter of the Bourne Saga. It’s him being hunted down by the government that made him, while he finds out new facts about the program that spawned him, and trying to stop those in charge of it from continuing. It’s the same thing in a different year with a noticeably older Damon. The Car chases were still awesome like in the inititial three pictures. I think that maybe these were a bit more emphasized due to Damon’s age but if not it was just to add action to the film to cover for the almost absent hand to hand battle scenes. My favorite scenes from the previous films were the intense close quarters combat where Bourne would break a guy down with whatever was available around him. I loved that unpredictability in the fighting it made it grittier, more dangerous, and more real to me. There was very little of this from the amnesia stricken agent. The few sequences we do get were shot in a chaotic way to where a lot of the fight is out of frame as the camera is too close at times to the combatants.
Tommy Lee Jones was a good foil to Bourne. His conniving, back stabbing, self righteous villainy in the name of America felt timely. I’ve always liked my Tommy Lee Jones stone faced and cold hearted and that’s what we get here. Heather Lee (played by Alicia Vikander) is the ambitious agent that is the catalyst for the internal struggle in the CIA. Her desire for power and position is equal with Jones’ Dewey. Vikander plays Lee in a way that you’re not sure exactly where her allegiances fall to.
All in all this was an OK, but ultimately unnecessary part of the Bourne odyssey. The action was good when vehicles were involved but hand to hand was weak save for the final fight between Bourne and another agent simply reffered to as Asset. If you never saw the other Bourne films it’s just fine. To this Bourne Universe alumni, it felt redundant and not on the same level as the original trilogy.