Bustling cityscapes, high-rising skyscrapers, decrepit tin shanty towns and snow covered mountain tops. The Bourne Legacy follows in the footsteps of its predecessors and manages once again to transport you from New York, to the Philippines and back again - and all in just over two hours.
Fans of the Bourne movies that go in expecting more of the same adrenalin-pumping, action-packed thrills will not necessarily be disappointed, but most would agree this follow-up lacks the same edge as those that came before it. The change of director, as well as leading man, is obvious and not always in a good way.
By way of simplifying the overcomplicated plotline, refer to the previous Bourne movies and replace Matt Damon with Jeremy Renner. Renner plays Agent Cross, another product of the Treadstone government program. When villain Colonel Byer (Edward Norton) is forced to dispose of any evidence that the program ever existed, Cross's execution is ordered, along with anyone else with too much knowledge of its objectives. This is includes beautiful government scientist Marta Shearing (Rachel Weisz), who the ever chivalrous Cross rescues before fleeing from their deadly pursuers.
Fans of Bourne will be pleased to hear that the staple parkour chase across city rooftops is included and doesn't disappoint. But apart from that, the action just isn't as thrilling as the previous movies. The real killer comes right at the end when director Tony Gilroy subjects us to the tedium of sitting through an eye-drooping 15-minute chase scene round Manila. The cinema seemed to breathe a communal sigh of relief as the end credits started rolling and we were allowed to return to the world of sane driving and infrequent gunshot fire.
That's not to say that there aren't moments when the film really impresses. New main man Jeremy Renner, for example, succeeds in the only area Matt Damon failed - looking the part. A far more believable rogue agent than Damon, Renner plays a character that you really believe has been used and abused by the state, world weary and tired of running. Though not the same desperate scramble for survival that the previous movies evoked so well, this film is still a worthwhile watch for lovers of action and government conspiracy.
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Date : 03/08/2012
Average price: £10.00