The Bourne Legacy

A rare trip to the cinema last night to watch the fourth installment of the Bourne series, The Bourne Legacy.

I call it the fourth installment when really it’s the first installment of the second series of the Bourne films. Where the first series, with Matt Damon as Bourne, had come to the end of its natural story – Bourne had by the end figured out who he was – so the latest film establishes a new “Bourne” in the shape of Aaron Cross (played well by Jeremy Renner).

The skeptic in me didn’t think there was much left to do with the Bourne concept; a fourth film was surely just about the money?

On the evidence of the film, I’d say not. The first 1.5 hours were excellent, particularly in establishing Cross as an altogether more human, emotional focus, and in the interplay with the timeframe and events of Ultimatum. The last 30 minutes were typical action-thriller spills and stunts and the film was much the worse for it, but I suspect overall Legacy would compare favourably to the first of the Damon-as-Bourne series, Identity.

It will be intriguing to see what story develops around Cross. I’m going to hedge my bets and suggest it will either be:

  • More back story on how Cross became Cross (though this was basically done with the first Bourne series)
  • Following Cross on a specific job after a kiss-and-make-up with the CIA
  • Matt Damon teaming up with Renner in a Bourne-Cross tag team.

My money would be on the last one, if the studio can work out a decent script and make the sums work.


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Man of letters & numbers; also occasionally of action. Husband to NTW. Dad of three. Friendly geek.

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