I went to see The Bourne Legacy at the midnight showing last night. Kind of a spur-of-the-moment thing to help prove to myself that I can do spur-of-the-moment things.
I really wanted to like The Bourne Legacy. Really. After seeing Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye in The Avengers, he became my latest celebrity crush, and I thought perhaps there was really hope for this latest installment of the Bourne films. When I saw the trailers, I was even more hopeful.
I am a huge fan of The Bourne Identity, the first Bourne film. To me it is a perfect movie (there, Adam, I used the word perfect when describing a film): action, romance, tension, intrigue, ridiculously well-choreographed fight and chase scenes. Bourne Supremacy & Ultimatum I also liked but was pretty pissed that they killed off Franka Potente’s character, so they weren’t my favorite.
Legacy was kind of bland. It was almost as if it didn’t have a story itself, it was just more of a segue to all the other possible story lines that might come in the future. There was way too much time spent on how the CIA had to clean up the mess started with Treadstone and all the various other government-created, highly-manipulated assassin program spin-offs.
At one point it became akin to that kids’ song: There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly. “She swallowed the dog to catch the cat, swallowed the cat to catch the bird, she swallowed the bird to catch the spider…” Except in this case it was: We created Blackbriar to clean up after Treadstone. We created Operation Outcome to clean up after Blackbriar. We created LARX to clean up after Outcome…
Yawn. One government screw-up after another. We get enough of that in real life. They should’ve moved on from the government stuff much quicker and given us more of Aaron Cross’ story.
I don’t feel like Renner got to provide enough to make Aaron Cross character very likeable. He was kind of chit-chatty and a bit whiny. Definitely not the stoic silences no-matter-what we’ve become accustomed to in the Bourne films. Don’t get me wrong, he still kicked ass… but it just wasn’t the same. Plus almost everyone they had him fight was a security guard or policeman – no one on par with his fighting level – so you ended up feeling like Cross was a bully.
This film’s main problem is there is nobody to root for or invest your emotions in. And the conclusion is so anti-climatic, I sat through the closing credits hoping not for another brief scene, but for the rest of the movie. It never came.
Ultimately: some action, some chase scenes, some possibility for romance. But it never comes close to reaching the heights of the first Bourne films. I doubt this will be the Legacy they were hoping for.