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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Bourne Legacy

 
I was never a viewer of the Bourne Series nor a reader of Robert Ludlum's confused hero, I just don't understand how Ludlum writes and so, I was not able to relate with the hype behind the 4th installment aside from the fact that it features our country in the plot. What made me really curious is how they were able to make action scenes in the busy streets of Manila and not with the character it was based on. So during the weekend, I made it a point that I will be able to watch the first 3 installments first before viewing The Bourne Legacy.

The 4th installment is different in so many ways. First, this does not feature the Jason Bourne arc since Matt Damon is not signed with this movie due to the reason that he would only reprise the role if Paul Greengrass, director of the Bourne Supremacy and Ultimatum would return to helm this 4th installment. Second, this is the only Bourne Movie based on the novel not made by Ludlum. Third, it lacks the excitement that all 3 movies has. 

While we are still enthralled with how the "Jason Bourne" series has eveolve throughout the series, Bourne Legacy takes an alternate route and somehow misses the big hit it is supposed to enjoy. Bourne Legacy follows Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner), who is a member of Operation Outcome program. This program aims physical and mental enhancement within its members through 2 pills. When the subjects dies mysteriously, Cross now struggles for survival as he uncovers its relation to the Operation Treadstone and Blackbrier.

This is Tony Gilroy's first directorial job for a Bourne Series after serving as the previous film's main screenwriter. This could have been a great advantage for the Bourne Legacy since Gilroy has been really good with the 3 films. However, the Legacy was dragging for its first 40-minute ran. Bourne fans may expect the same adrenaline as the previous movies, however, Legacy failed to deliver. The strength of the trilogy was the great balance with action and an impressive plot development. Lagacy, however, maintained stagnant for its first hour and just when the things are getting better, you hear that familiar sound in the background signaling the end of the film. 

The common denominator among the Bourne films are the car chases. In Legacy, Manila came into ranks with France as the venue for the vehicular chases. Though there is no question that it was a great sequence, it was the only thing watchable in the film, the only proof that we are indeed watching a Bourne movie.

It was nice to see Manila in a Hollywood film. It was nice to see local actors doing their thing. It was nice that we were once in a mainstream Hollywood film, however, Bourne Legacy is not even half of the previous films. It lacks the genius behind the series, it lacks the "Bourne-ness." Filipinos will be delighted to see Manila in the silverscreen, but Bourne Legacy is the installment almost - "almost" at par with Superman: A Quest for Peace.

GRADE: C

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