Films | The Bourne Legacy – Movie Review

The Bourne Legacy – Movie Review

Posted by FATEMA H.KAGALWALA on August 10, 2012 | No Comments

PRODUCER – Frank Marshall, Patrick Crowley
DIRECTOR – Tony Gilroy
WRITER – Tony Gilroy, Dan Gilroy
CAST – Jeremy Renner, Rachel Weisz, Edward Norton, Joan Allen, Albert Finney
MUSIC – James Newton Howard

‘The Bourne Legacy’ as the title comes of as an unlikely one as it is no longer about Jason Bourne and his survival. It is related to his world though, but centered around Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner) seeking refuge. He isn’t a spy like Bourne but an agent of The Program, a secret project of the US intelligence to modify the human genome to produce men of extraordinary physical and mental abilities. The Program is aborted now and the agency, headed by Eric Byer (Edward Norton) is hunting down its guinea pigs to eliminate them. And hence Cross finds himself at cross-purposes with his hirers and Jeremy Renner does it with an understated flourish that is far different from Damon’s full-bodied charisma.

The Bourne Legacy is full of chases where Cross at once is trying to save himself from dangers both natural and man-made (wolves, the agency and so on) by hi-drama action. At the same time he needs to find a way to ‘cure’ himself of the effects of the drugs he is subjected to during the program to either return to normal or stay from further mutating him. He finds help in Dr Marta Shearing (Rachel Weisz) which also gives him an ally to fight the forces. Like the recent Total Recall, Bourne Legacy treats its woman protagonist on par, never a front, never used for sex appeal and more apart of the narrative as a character than just a gender.

The Bourne series are known for their spectacular action, tight suspense and an underlying moral sub-text. Tony Gilroy, the co-writer of the previous three films takes up the mantle as director from his predecessors Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity) and Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Ultimatum, The Bourne Supremacy). Kinetic action coupled with unrelenting chase sequences inform the breathlessness of the film but there is a certain over-wrought concentration solely on the action that subdues the moral dilemma that makes the series complete.

Having said that, for action fans, Bourne Legacy provides enough fodder to chew on and regurgitate satisfactorily. Explosions, wall-scaling, car chases and exhibition of sheer super-human abilities make for gasping viewing. The editing is irregular on purposes, to heighten the effect of movement and the cinematography, besides creating astounding visual appeal, adds the required nervous energy with its framing. Concise dialogues and less aural emphasis (except music) keeps the pulse of the film in check yet it seems confounding at times to keep track of who is chasing whom and for what.

As all actions films go, in terms of story The Bourne Legacy treats its plot rather like a background sketch to justify the hi-scale staging of action and if that is all one looks for then it is a sheer treat to savour.

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