Review: The Bourne Legacy


(So this was going to go up yesterday, because I was going to watch the film and then write a review while it was fresh in my mind. Sadly, allergies made me miserable yesterday, and I didn’t feel up to it.)

When I first heard there was going to be another Bourne film, I let out an unenthusiastic “whoopdeedoo.” Now, I hadn’t seen any of the movies (yet) and truthfully had no intention to, but then I found out Jeremy Renner was starring in it. Jeremy Renner, who I had begun to love (as an actor) since his cameo in Thor (which is when I really started getting excited for The Avengers)(also, still haven’t seen any of his Oscar nominated stuff.) I had just watched Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, and Renner is one of the reasons I like that film (the other being Simon Pegg, of course.) This is not to disparage the other actors or the franchise, just a personal taste thing. Straight up action films are boring to me. I don’t enjoy 30 minute car chases/fight scenes, something The Avengers avoided with typically snappy Whedon dialogue and constantly changing the scene (because let’s be honest, The Avengers is like 25 minutes of story and the rest is action.) I can think of only one extended car chase scene I enjoyed, and that’s the one at the end of the original Gone in 60 Seconds. But this is besides the point that because of Jeremy Renner, I was going to watch all of the Mission Impossible and Bourne films. Now I did the Mission Impossible backwards, watching the new film and then one, two, and three. With Bourne, I had intended to watch the first trilogy and then see The Bourne Legacy in theaters. I managed to watch the trilogy last summer. Unfortunately due to other must see movies of the summer, I couldn’t justify the ticket, or really find the time.

Which brings us to now, when I discovered The Bourne Legacy on HBOGo (which like these ladies is actually my parents’.) Then I saw the film was expiring on September 30 and decided to skip How I Met Your Mother to watch it.

Now, I mostly enjoyed the Bourne films, until the inevitable, drawn out chase/fight scene that each one climaxed into. I probably enjoyed Aaron Cross more than Jason Bourne, because Aaron got to be a character, while Jason starts as a blank slate with some things being added to him each film. I would enjoy seeing the two characters interact … someday. I think we need to establish both of them a bit more before we can actually enjoy a team up or encounter. Now I liked Dr. Marta Shearing more, because of the three actresses, Rachel Weisz is my favorite. Beyond their backgrounds, each woman is basically scared out of her mind, but finds the inner strength to survive and work with Bourne/Cross. I don’t hate any of them, and I really don’t like them any differently.

As for the actual movie, I’m glad I watched the first movies before seeing The Bourne Legacy. I know the film was trying to educate those who hadn’t with the framing, but it was done in such a way that would leave you confused if you didn’t have any background. Now as someone who had seen The Bourne Ultimatum, the framing really helped set up why Aaron Cross and Marta Shearing are being hunted down. The Bourne Legacy didn’t have the luxury of The Bourne Identity, which could string out the pieces until we discovered why they wanted Jason Bourne dead. The film had to establish itself within the larger universe, and I liked how they did it. I was rather engaged in the film, up until the final chase scene which, as always, I felt went on too long. Where the film was weak for me, was that it drew too many elements from the other Bourne, primarily the last minute other operative that Aaron would eventually defeat.

So The Bourne Legacy was a solid action film for me, but nothing too spectacular.


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