The Bourne Legacy: Movie Review
Despite some great performances, the latest Bourne film fails to live up to expectations.
The Bourne Legacy is the fourth instalment in the Bourne series. However, It is the first movie to stray away from Jason Bourne being the main character, focusing instead on a parallel agent, Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner).
In my opinion, director Tony Gilroy (of Duplicity and Michael Clayton fame) showed his relative inexperience in this role; exposing the film to a spiral of events and a lack of direction. Traditionally, Gilroy’s films involved Hollywood heavyweights (Clive Owen and Julia Roberts in Duplicity, George Clooney in Michael Clayton), but unfortunately in The Bourne Legacy, he does not have the luxury on leaning on powerhouses of this sort.
Having said that, Renner and Rachel Weisz both put in stunning performances, which despite the weak storyline and disjointed scenes, make the film at least tolerable to watch. Edward Norton is also very convincing as Eric Byer, the 'Mr. Know-It-All' of the film, and the one pulling the strings in the mayhem that is the secret world of the CIA.
In the story, Aaron Cross forms a close friendship with Dr. Marta Shearing (Rachel Weisz), after the two are thrust together as unwilling partners in their bid for truth and survival. As common as it is in this era of filmmaking and storytelling, the hero will turn out to be the weak and vulnerable one – relying instead on the supposedly weaker character in the plot.
The film is rated M and there was one particular scene in the movie which was essential for the storyline, yet very disturbing. The scene contains a methodical way of trapping people in an enclosed area and murdering them one by one, in cold blood. While not graphic, it was disturbing enough for me to warn you that this movie is definitely one for a mature audience.
If you are a Bourne fan, you will be disappointed with the movie as it strays away, very far away, from the essence of the previous trilogy of Bourne movies. There are borrowed edits from the Bourne movies and elements of Treadstone and Blackfriar in Legacy, but I would go so far to say that the entire nature of this movie is unrecognisable to the hardcore Bourne fans. Watch it only if you are up for Renner, Weisz and Norton’s performances, and maybe, just maybe, you can turn a blind eye to the rest of the less satisfying elements of the film.