Main cast: Matt Damon (Jason Bourne), Alicia Vikander (Heather Lee), Vincent Cassel (The Asset), Julia Stiles (Nicolette “Nicky” Parsons), Riz Ahmed (Aaron Kalloor), Bill Camp (Malcolm Smith), and Tommy Lee Jones (Robert Dewey)
Director: Paul Greengrass
Oh look, who is finally back to reprise the main lead. The director is back too. I guess they must have been paid enough money, or they think their careers would be better off for it. Jason Bourne is not a reboot, though, it takes off from The Bourne Ultimatum, conveniently forgetting the aberration that was The Bourne Legacy. I suppose they didn’t go with a similar titling pattern for this movie because there are movie-goers today who may not have been born during the time when The Bourne Ultimatum came out.
Some twelve years or so have passed since that movie, and Jason Bourne had spent those years training his body to look even more fabulous than ever – hello there, baby – and taking off his shirt while boxing in underground rings as such. Those gigs must pay really well, as our hero would later be able to fly here and there and have access to all kinds of spying devices and stuff – things that would cost a bomb considering that he no longer has access to his old agency stuff. He’s dragged back into CIA drama when Nicky, who was shared two past movies with him, contacted him one day with news: she found CIA files pointing out that his father actually played a big role in starting Treadstone, that secret black ops agency he fled from, and the circumstances behind his father’s death were not what he thinks they were. Oh, and the CIA is starting another new black ops division. This is the… what, 200th one? You’d think they’d hide their info better after being hacked and whacked so many times already, sigh.
The CIA tracks down Nicky, and hence Bourne is exposed as well. The new CIA director Robert Dewey must be related to Noah Vosen, because he jumps to the conclusion that Jason Bourne is back for a sneak attack so he must die ASAP. The Cyber Ops division head Heather Lee begs to differ – she thinks Bourne can be drawn back to the fold. She is also annoyed by Dewey, and privately sees Bourne as a stepping stone for her to advance her position within the CIA while letting Bourne do the dirty work of getting Dewey out of her way. Poor Bourne, will he ever get that much deserved vacation that he clearly needs?
While this one may not be a reboot, it’s basically a variation of The Bourne Ultimatum. Really, the two movies have so many similarities, it’s probably a good thing that some ten years separate them. Once again, we start out with an informant getting Bourne in trouble – this time, it is Nicky – and once again, that informant bites the dust (poor Nicky, she finally joins the rank of people who come to a sad end because even sharing the same air as he is bad for one’s longevity). Once again, we have a blowhard idiot leader of a group who underestimates Bourne, and the female CIA operative who turns out to be mostly on Bourne’s side. Once again, Bourne seems impossible to kill (he is even impervious to explosions and falls a few stories down a building now) and the people after him have all the competence of a door knob. Another assassin is on Bourne’s tail, this name he’s called the Asset. And so forth – really, if you have seen The Bourne Ultimatum, you will find much of this movie a retread.
On the bright side, Heather Lee is a pretty interesting character, as she can be quite sneaky and ruthless when one isn’t expecting it, and Matt Damon really spent a lot of time getting his body all pretty to show off during the shirtless scenes. The pacing is as solid as in its predecessor, and there is plenty of action-packed fun to enjoy with the popcorn and such. Provided, as usual, that one doesn’t think too hard about logic and such.
Anyway, Jason Bourne is a pretty fun flick. Then again, so was The Bourne Ultimatum, and these two movies are basically two sides of the same coin. If you want to watch this one, make sure that some time has passed since you watched the previous movie. The Bourne formula, while still working here, is really starting to wear thin.