I was one of the many who have grown from 2002-2007 watching The Bourne Trilogy. Loved the trilogy immensely. I’ve re-watched it countless times and revelled at how awesome it was filmed. Matt Damon’s ‘Jason Bourne’, for me was almost in level with James Bond, maybe better too. Thanks to Doug Liman for envisioning ‘The Bourne Identity’ to current times which paved way for Paul Greengrass’ sequels. Paul Greengrass’ direction also made The Bourne Trilogy what it is now; a realistic, contemporary espionage thriller. Alas, Greengrass announced he wouldn’t be helming another Bourne movie and that was the end of seeing Matt Damon as Jason Bourne too.
Robert Ludlum’s Bourne trilogy had been filmed wonderfully. Enter Eric Van Lustbader’s foray into Bourne territory and Tony Gilroy was chosen to direct ‘The Bourne Legacy’. Tony Gilroy’s direction was more akin to his previous movies: Duplicity & Michael Clayton, both of which were laden with heavy dialogues. A Bourne movie isn’t supposed to be so. But unfortunately it falls almost in the same category. You’d almost forget you are watchin a Bourne movie, except when the action sequences were on. And even the action felt formulaic…there was the usual fast melee sequence and the vehicle chase which redeems the movie a bit. Yes, Tony smartly intertwines the story with the original trilogy but that doesnt save it from being just a mediocre thriller. Most of the times it was hard to follow the plot.
Matt Damon’s suave was nowhere to be seen in Jeremy Renner. I felt he was prepared almost like a born-action-star, in every other scene, something which I am not used to. Jason Bourne’s quest for his identity was what kept the the Trilogy fluid and fun.It was hard to sympathize with Aaron Cross. I am not saying Jeremy’s Cross wasn’t good. He did try his best to keep the character alive (pun intended). But ‘Aaron Cross’ wasn’t beefed up as Jason Bourne, the backstory simply wasn’t written well that it almost falls to the ‘ah chuck it’ category. Rachel Weisz convincingly plays an innocent Marta Shearing thrown into the thick of blitzkrieg and she does a good job almost similar to Franka Potente. Edward Norton as Eric Bryer, a retired USAF Colonel, was addressed ruthless in the synopsis, but he was nowhere close to playing the ruthlessness of Noah Vosen played nefariously by David Straithairn.
James Newton Howard’s score was also largely uninspiring. The signature violin ‘Main Theme’ was only heard once and that was it. There weren’t other memorable catchy tracks. Even the score for the chase sequence felt just meh. I am severely dissapointed with The Bourne Legacy score.
It seems The Aaron Cross ‘Bourne’ movies are just starting, as evident from the very Bourne-esque ending with the another version of ‘Extreme Ways’ track by Moby. The Bourne Legacy is comparatively alot less entertaining than the original trilogy. If Paul Greengrass was back to pick up where he left off, it would have been great which largely seems unlikely. It all proves to one thing: A Bourne movie without Jason Bourne in it just aint cool.