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  • Writer's pictureKara Chatham

Jason Bourne | Film

It's been nine years since the last Bourne film with Matt Damon leading the charge - The Bourne Ultimatum. Four years ago, Bourne Legacy was released starring Jeremy Renner and we all know how that one ended. Most fans, myself included, do not even count Bourne Legacy as a part of the Bourne series. It's just a movie that was released. Because of how that one turned out, I wasn't entirely sure how this one was going to be, but I had a bit more hope for it because Matt Damon was back in the spotlight.

Before I hop into the specifics about the film, I want to briefly talk about the novel series and the author who created this character that Damon has brought to life on screen. The first three films are adaptations of the novels by Robert Ludlum. The Bourne Identity was published in 1980, The Bourne Supremacy in 1986, and The Bourne Ultimatum in 1990. But that is where the adaptations stop, as well as Bourne novels written by Ludlum. Ludlum passed away in 2001 and Eric Van Lustbader took over the series. Lustbader wrote The Bourne Legacy and it was published in 2004, but the film of the same title is not based on or an adaptation of this novel. Lustbader has written nine Bourne novels, but we have Robert Ludlum to thank for creating the character of Jason Bourne. And the characters were all the writers of the Jason Bourne screenplay, Paul Greengrass and Christopher Rouse used to create the film.

Transitioning back to strictly discussing the film. We get to jump back in to seeing how Bourne is living his life since he has taken down Treadstone and Blackbriar. It looks like he has found a way to live off the grid, but it wouldn't be a Bourne film without him getting back on the CIA's radar. Nicky Parsons (Julia Stiles) is working with a whistle blower and they are trying to uncover information about the CIA's newest Black Ops idea. In this process, Parsons uncovers more information about Bourne's past and thus giving us the adventure experience that only Jason Bourne can give.

Overall, I really enjoyed this installation to the series. The over all experience is similar to the initial trilogy that was released in the early 2000s. The shot styles are the same, but the quality matches that of today's cameras - I'd be curious if they tried to make it look the exact same as the original trilogy. The action sequences, I think, are better than the original trilogy. It gave Bourne more of a MacGyver aspect than he had in past films, because he was doing more than just the typical martial arts type of sequences or using traditional weapons. He was picking up seemingly random objects and getting the same result.

Something that really helped update the story to present day was the subplot line of the CIA's latest idea for Black Ops. Without this aspect, there would not have been quite as many indications that this was happening in our technology dominate world. They didn't over emphasize this storyline, and I'm not sure that I fully understood how they were planning to use the technology that was highlighted - maybe if I watch it again I'll get a better understanding. But the subplot was well woven into the main plot, therefore there was minimal confusion when it switched focuses for a few minutes.

The ending... The ending is what I hope you would slightly expect if you have seen the original trilogy. The writers have set it up to where they could, if they so chose, make another film. I would not be opposed to the idea as long as the character of Jason Bourne is the main character. At the same time, I think they could leave the series where it is at and there be a sense of completion.

I recommend seeing it, especially if you have seen and/or are a fan of the original trilogy. It is a nice blend of past and present with a dash of future potential.

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