The Bourne Legacy
Review by Mason Storm
Yesterday I got a chance to see “The Bourne Legacy”, a movie I have been very eager to see since hearing about it last year. As a big fan of the Bourne series, I was very cautious about a sequel with no Jason Bourne. However, after hearing that the movie would star Jeremy Renner and Edward Norton, I got pretty excited. Unfortunately the movie couldn’t live up to its trailer, let alone the trilogy that gave it it’s name. It is extremely flawed and doesn’t have much action to make up for it.
Without getting to into detail, the story is very weak. Due to the events from the Bourne Ultimatum and the Jason Bourne story going public, Eric Byer (Norton) attempts to wipe out all agents of the Outcome program. Outcome is a program similar to that of Treadstone in which the agents take blue and green pills or “chems” as they are referred to by Renner. They succeed in killing all agents, accept for Cross (Renner) who they also believe is dead. Cross, needing his “chems”, searches for the doctor who administrated them during his time at Outcome, Marta Shearing (Rachel Weisz). Shearing, the only remaining Outcome doctor, is in a protective house when she and Cross meet. The story pretty much ends there. Aaron needs Weisz to “viral him off” of his pills, she needs him to live. They try to get Aaron his chems and then run away. The plot simply comes down to running for their lives and there is no “Bourne” in running.
My biggest problem with the movie is the plot. The characters have no purpose. They were simply lucky enough to survive an “extermination” and ran for their lives. The connection to the Bourne movies feels more like a chore, or a requirement, than an actual connection. If you remove any Jason Bourne reference in the movie, you wouldn’t be lost at all, and it would honestly make the movie slightly easier to watch without the expectations.
My next problem is the characters. A movie starring Jeremy Renner, Edward Norton, and Rachel Weisz should be close to flawless. These characters are all one dimensional and do nothing to make you truly care what happens to them. The character who had the most depth was the character with the least time on screen, Byer (Norton). Norton is never really portrayed as a villain in this movie, and the only time he and Renner share the screen is in a brief flashback. Cross seems to take the entire situation to lightly, and doesn’t have the “badass” factor that Jason Bourne had. Renner does his best to bring that aspect to Cross, but there is only so much he can do with a weak script.
The action is excellent; the very few times you are able to see any. There are all of 3 action sequences in the movie. The first real action scene took place in the safe house where Weisz’s character was staying. It was one of the best action scenes I’ve seen in a movie in years. After that there is a short scene in a factory and the chase scene at the end involving another agent. Unlike previous Bourne movies, Cross didn’t get to fight the agent sent to kill him, which was a disappointment.
The movie drags along for the most part, not really serving any sort of purpose. The action is great when you get to see it, but a fight with the other agent at the end of the movie would have made it a little more satisfying. The movie is a huge disappointment, especially to have such a great cast and great potential. There will most likely be a sequel in the coming years, hopefully they can salvage the little potential left in the franchise; or just bring Jason Bourne back.