Just back from
Went into this with pretty low expectations (even though I really like the first three), and I was actually expecting to be able to sum up my experiences with a 'Meh' or maybe a comment on how it was worth a trip to the cinema, but that I couldn't see it taking up place on the DVD shelf, besides the previous ones. I did had hopes though, that it would be a least a 3/5.
But sadly, not only is this the worst Bourne movie by far (and that includes Legacy
), it's just an awful, ill-conceived movie.Some reasons (and some spoilers) (Click to show)
First of, there's no real story here. And what there is, could've been handled much more elegantly with some finesse and maybe some feeling (like the bits about the father), instead it's like a slight-of-hand trick gone out of control, where they seem to think that we'll ignore the missing story if they shout loud enough and shake the camera even more nausea inducingly than ever. Blegh.
Edited by Kaplan - 8/4/16 at 12:46am
Characters are pretty bad too. As cute as Vikander is, her character is just totally unbelievable (a twenty-something having that position in the CIA? And actually attempting to black-mail the Director of National Intelligence into making her the new director of CIA? And how is she not in jail at the end for killing who she did and her actions leading up to it?). And while it's alway nice to see Vincent Cassel, it's a little too neat how he was there at Bourne's birth *and* how he had personally suffered from Bourne's previous actions.
And wasn't the relationship between CIA and the social media platform guy supposed to be very secret? Yet they meet up at a restaurant where everybody from the other guests to the waiters can recognize them, as well as going to Vegas to be part of the same panel on stage?!?
As for Bourne himself, his motivation isn't very clear (apart from revenge, and when he gets the chance for that he either lacks decisiveness or behaves totally irrational). And at the end he's pretty much back where he was at the start. Which isn't so strange for a franchise character like Bond, but part of Bourne's appeal is his character arc, with the best one in Identity. Actually, apart from giving them a cool shot for the trailer, it seems like a major set-back for Bourne - who as far as I understand the previous films, is a guy who wants to renounce violence - to make a living at the movie's start, by beating people senseless. It's not like he doesn't have other skills. Running a scooter rental shop comes to mind.
And the 'I remember. I remember everything' might sound cool, but he doesn't. And when it's pointed out to him that he doesn't, he just thinks back and then he does again. Like the face of a a guy driving away from a chaotic car bombing many years before. There's just no finesse.
So, bad story aside, is at least the action worth going for? Not really. On one hand, it's a repeat of what we're used to by now (Bourne on a bike. Bourne in a car chase. Bourne driving up or down steps. Bourne in a hand-to-hand fight. Bourne in another hand-to-hand fight. Bourne playing cat and mouse with CIA agents while walking around crowded places, talking or listening to someone, using a head set. An assassin behind an air vent in a public place. An assassin killing a woman Bourne is trying to safe, driving at high speed. Etc.
Of course, there may have been similarities in the first three as well, but somehow they still managed to bring something new with impressive action scenes that stood out on their own. When they try that here, it just falls flat. The Greek riot scene for instance is so obviously just there to provide 'visual interest' or to 'dial it up a notch' for just one more chase scene. And besides being really physically unpleasant to watch due to the extreme shaky cam, I guess we're supposed to not care at all about the violence that takes place around our main players?
The Vegas Strip car chase is worse. For someone who claims he's a bit miffed about being turned into a weapon and sent to kill people (which he actually volunteered for, remember?), Bourne seems awfully cavalier when it comes to the safety of innocents, when you consider the vehicular mayhem *he* causes by insisting to keep up a wild chase, destroying tons of cars, casinos, etc. Isn't Bourne supposed to be smarter than that, using skills and technology to find who he wants, whenever he wants, without risking innocent lives?
Speaking of technology, I can't remember the previous movies being this *dumb*. The hacking stuff makes no sense. CIA can turn off the power in any building in the world (like Iceland) when it suits them. Pretty much everything is monitored, unless it's important that it isn't, like when someone in the CIA is sending warning texts to a person the rest of them are watching, on the same phone they themselves just remotely accessed. Bourne can pick up an ear piece and listen in on a conversation that the previous wearer wasn't a part of. And on and on with groan inducing examples every 10 minutes.
A note on the trailer: Not uncommonly it had a few shots that aren't in the movie (like 'Oh my god, it's Jason Bourne!'), but the best clip from the trailer - the confident one punch knock out - is shown from another and much less efficient angle in the film.
In the end, it plays out mostly like a bad fan fiction, with (what someone thought was) cool sound bytes and 'extreme' action pieces that end up being generic (either generic due to previous Bournes, or generic like the Vegas Strip chase that suspends the laws of nature like no Bourne has done before and would fit better in a Fast and the Furious flick).
So yeah, I'll keep going back to the first three (especially Identity) now and then, but there was nearly nothing redeeming here and there's definitely no need to sit through this again.