Actually reviews are not supposed to be based on wishful thinking.
Nonetheless for those members who gave this a high rating more out of frustration than anything else, I do feel your pain.
The original Bourne trilogy was not merely good, it was superb. As a top reviewer here with some 1200 reviews under my belt I said more than once that the original was the best spy trilogy I had ever seen and I am unashamed of the fact that I have seen each film in that series four or five times since original release. They are an adrenaline rush, the perfect mix of story, form, and effect.
Even 2012's Bourne Legacy -- a feature where it was ever so clear that Damon had been offered a fortune just to walk-on and smile at the camera, but refused anyway -- was a solid movie, great script, held the attention, and Renner did a great job.
However, now that I have seen Jason Bourne 2016, I cannot help but wish that Damon had agreed to participate in Legacy, rather than be lured back 4 years later for a part he clearly no longer likes, in a production he would rather not be in.
I tend toward "purist" reviews, that is to say, I don't really care WHY a film was made as much as I do about how entertaining is it to watch ...?
(That said, I have to "assume" that Damon broke his vow and came back simply for the cash. And Greengrass agreed to take hold of the camera one more time only if he could get a writing credit too. Ugh!)
So, speaking of entertainment, there is almost none in this movie. The script is a mess. Written by the director for the clear purpose of showcasing his action and camera-work skills, there is no attempt to build connection from the top.
The script is so bad that even viewers in love with the original trilogy -- like this one -- have to keep reminding themselves who Bourne is supposed to be, and what is supposed to motivate him.
(Not to mention major plot holes here and there. Am I the only one who noticed that the most WANTED MAN IN America attempted to enter customs under his own name with no advance certainty that the computer would be "fixed" in time? Remember, from the second film in the series, this is a man who "never guesses and never makes mistakes." Other than accepting to do this film, that is.)
A good film makes the viewer feel good. The scientists call it endorphin production. This 120 minute endless chase, from the top of the movie to the ending, merely produces a caffeine buzz and sets your nerves on edge. Yes, Greengrass can use this production in his own personal highlight reel to showcase his moving camera skills. But his writing skills? Not so much.
Tommy Lee Jones delivers possibly the most superficial performance of his excellent career and the money he was offered cannot begin to make up for the indignity of the closeups.
Newcomer Alicia Vikander acquits herself well. Then again, she is a newbie with a whole string of good movies ahead of her, career-wise, whereas the actors in this film seemed more interested in taking the money ... and running.
---------------ADDENDUM NOV 2017-------------
If you are curious to see the kind of film that JASON BOURNE (2016) should have been in a perfect world -- or a parallel universe, or whatever -- than have a quick peek at ATOMIC BLONDE 2017. Presumably when you read this review in the far future, you can snag it on streaming media or DVD or possibly even beamed directly into your cortex. Theron, for the first 2/3 of the film, is the Bourne of old. She is an agent with a mission and a purpose and a predisposition for removing obstacles from her path with the same ease a gardener pulls weeds from a flower bed. And the script is intelligent and purposeful. Yes, she has more estrogen than the Bourne we are used to (well, a LOT more, actually) but, other than that tiny discrepancy, ATOMIC BLONDE is more a Bourne sequel than this soppy entry.
Action / Thriller
Action / Thriller
Jason Bourne is again being hunted by the CIA. It begins when Nicky Parsons a former CIA operative who helped Bourne, who went under and now works with a man who's a whistle blower and is out to expose the CIA's black ops. Nicky hacks into the CIA and downloads everything on all their Black Ops, including Treadstone which Bourne was a part of. And Heather Lee, a CIA agent, discovers the hack and brings it to the attention of CIA Director Dewey, the man behind the Black Ops. He orders Parsons be found and, hopefully, Bourne, too.
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November 17, 2016 at 04:01 PM