Many fans were surprised when it was announced that there would be continuation of the Bourne series without the likes of Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass (director of the previous 2 titles). Not only did the Renner have his work cut out to replace the Damon, Tony Gilroy had an even harder task of directing and creating a story worth telling, as a follow on from where it ended in 2004. Could it really be worth trying to eek some life out of a rock, which is comparable to this venture?
It seems unfair to start off a movie in this vein, but if you were a fan of the series, there is no question that it would be compared to the originals. The movie starts out with the unveiling of the “Treadstone” and “Blackbriar” projects that went wrong, and witnesses that threaten to make it public knowledge. The basic plot revolves around the idea that there was more than just one super-agent in the field as a result of these projects. In addition, the science behind creating these agents, which makes them faster, stronger and smarter, is a major focal point of the story. This may seem like a good premise to build upon, but too often the viewer is aware of the dangers and subplots lurking around the corner, especially in the opening half of the movie.
Without a doubt, the air of suspense is always there while you await the next action scene. Despite the somewhat drawn out background story the director tries to play out, there is sufficient action scenes, involving car chases and hand-to-hand combat, to keep you from drifting in and out of reality. In the end, though, there is no replacing the originals. The story doesn’t quite live up to expectations and the ending falls far from where it should be, although the performances Jeremy Renner and Rachel Weisz are worthy enough to stand out. The chemistry of these actors only fall short due to the overall script. Even the likes of Edward Norton couldn’t do enough to place this movie on top where, in all honesty, it should belong.
Ster-Kinekor’s digital presentation of this film makes for great viewing, mostly during the opening scene where a lot of mountain imagery is shown. Despite my harsh criticisms of the movie, The Bourne Legacy is definitely worth the watch, and I’d even watch it again (although hoping to fast-forward through the less interesting bits).