FILM REVIEW | Jason Bourne (2016)

Jason Bourne (2016)
Starring Matt Damon, Tommy Lee Jones, Julia Stiles, and Alicia Vikander
Written by Paul Greengrass and Christopher Rouse; Directed by Paul Greengrass

(Film blurb begins) It’s been 10 years since Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) walked away from the agency that trained him to become a deadly weapon. Hoping to draw him out of the shadows, CIA director Robert Dewey assigns hacker and counterinsurgency expert Heather Lee to find him. Lee suspects that former operative Nicky Parsons is also looking for him. As she begins tracking the duo, Bourne finds himself back in action battling a sinister network that utilizes terror and technology to maintain unchecked power. (Film blurb ends)

There is nothing wrong with Jason Bourne (2016) per se, except its ambition. Take the plot of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum, mix together and you get the plot of this new film. It all has a ‘been there, done that’ quality about this film franchise based on characters originally created by Robert Ludlum. The film is OK. Its certainly done well, Matt Damon still delivers in the role despite begin older, and Paul Greengrass knows how to build the tension. Tommy Lee Jones plays the resident antagonist, who represents yet another level of the Treadstone program. Julia Stiles returns as Nicky Parsons, Bourne’s former handler with whom he might have had a romantic relationship. Successive films have hinted at such a relationship enough for Stiles to sufficiently step into the Franka Potente role, providing emotional motivation for Bourne’s crusade against the deep state in this film. Alicia Vikander continues to make a strong impression as a young actress. This time she steps into the Joan Allen ‘is she playing Bourne or on Bourne’s side?’ role. Like I said: been there, done that. But still, where is left for this franchise to go if they do not change the direction and try something different? Is Bourne next going to hunt down and kill the Vice President/President at the time he was recruited to Treadstone but also, it turns out, ordered the assassination (somehow) of his long dead mother? Mark’s Grade: C+

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