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THE BOURNE LEGACY Fails To Live Up To Its Predecessors For Raven McCoy!!


With Hollywood struggling to find original ideas for movies, why not continue a successful series, one like the BOURNE movies? They are action packed, exciting movies that sought not only to follow an extraordinary man as he discovered who he was and how he came to be this way, all while under attack from other agents and the government, but also aimed to expose secret government programs. So a sequel would make sense. But wait. Matt Damon’s not coming back as Bourne? Ok. I guess it can follow another agent in a similar program. That would make sense. Paul Greengrass and Doug Limon aren’t either? Well that can’t be good. But it’s directed by Tony Gilroy, the guy who wrote the first three BOURNE movies? Well he’d at least have a handle on the series and understand where to take it next, right? Yeah, no. He doesn’t and THE BOURNE LEGACY doesn’t know what to do with itself.

THE BOURNE LEGACY wants you to believe that it’s continuing in the same vein as the past films. That another agent wants to continue what Bourne started and expose his corrupt superiors. But really all the movie amounts to is a drug addicted super agent in search of more of the pills that grant him his super soldier status.  Jeremy Renner takes center stage as black ops agent Aaron Cross. He’s super smart like Bourne and can disarm and kill you in the blink of an eye like Bourne.  However unlike Bourne, he’s not an active field agent as he spends the first 40 minutes of the movie roaming around the Alaskan wilderness avoiding wolves à laTHE GREY.  While Bourne wanted to find out who he was, Aaron already knows who he really is (even though he responds to a different name) and knows how he came to be in his program. Now I’m not saying that Aaron needs to be a carbon copy of Bourne. I like that Aaron has a sense of humor and is a bit more lively than Bourne but Aaron doesn’t have any of the same cares or concerns about the issues that were brought up in the previous films for this to be described as a Bourne sequel other than the events that are going on around him connect to the last film, of which he takes no notice of. Aaron’s not concerned with the actions his government is taking to get rid of him. He doesn’t wantto stop the government from killing his fellow agents or help spread the word about Blackbriar and similar projects while trying to escape the agent life. Nope, the only thing he cares about is obtaining more of his program-approved pills and that’s it.That’s his mission. It’s all about the pills. I need more pills. “I haven’t had a blue pill in 36 hours.” “I haven’t had a green pill in 51 hours.” Beyond his constant need for pills, there is no character development or any real reason to care about Aaron at all.

Outside of Aaron, a man by the name of Eric Bryer (Edward Norton) is hired by the CIA to eliminate all other agents in programs similar to the one Bourne was in.  Eric’s work runs concurrent with THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM and deals with the effects of Pamela Landy making information about Project Blackbriar public. But he doesn’t go around dispatching agents himself. No, he sits inside a building, behind a desk directing others to get the dirty work done.  He’s like Landy, tracking Aaron from afar and doing little else than asking for something to be brought up on the big screen.

Rachel Weisz takes on Julia Stiles’ role from the last two films. She's someone who is somehow involved with the program and can help him. In this case she's Dr. Marta Shearing, a virologist who ran performance tests on Aaron over the past four years. After surviving a massacre she wasn’t supposed to, the government targets her and Aaron rescues her. While his intentions seem good, Aaron simply needs her to find out where he can get more pills. He bargains her protection for more pills. This man really needs his fix. But my question is what happens after he gets his pills? Does he continue with the program even though he's not actually a field agent? Does he "viral out", as they put it, and then not need the pills but remain a part of the program? Does he want out of the program at all? Who knows? He doesn’t give a shit what the government does, did or plans on doing. The only thing I do know is this junkie needs his pills ASAP and he will do anything to get them.

There were a few exciting and tense shootouts but they only punctuate long stretches of exposition. There is just. So. Much. Talking. I understand the need to explain the medical basis for the film but dear god, man! It takes for fucking ever for them to get to the point and explain how the pills work. The thing I loved most about the BOURNE series was how little Bourne actually spoke. He found out just enough to be satisfied and proceeded to kick ass the rest of the movie. This is an action movie. Shut your yaps and fight. With all the talking going on, the first action sequence takes about 40 minutes to happen. After that it's another 20-30 minutes. Another 20 after that and it all concludes with the most long-winded chase sequence. I was over the chase long before it ended. I didn’t even care how it ended. I just wanted the movie to be over already! And even then, when there were fight scenes and action sequences Jason Bourne killed bad guys. Aaron primarily kills, not beats up, kills guys who are just doing their job, like security guards, not actual agents or people of equal stature. At least give the man a fair fight against other agents, not Joe from around the block who’s working the night shift to help pay for his kid’s school.

For a movie where the name "Jason Bourne" is dropped so many times you’d expect Matt Damon to at least make a cameo. He doesn’t and rightly so since THE BOURNE LEGACY does little to live up to its predecessors. It’s ridiculously long, terribly boring, pretty one dimensional and doesn’t have a sympathetic hero or do anything to further the story that was set up by THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM. Why the man who helped write the past films thought this was a proper continuation I don’t understand. If you want to expand the Bourne world by bringing in a new agent and follow them, that’s fine but make them an interesting character, a character with a mission greater than himself. Aaron Cross is not that guy and the events going on around him actually begin to close off the world that was introduced in the past films. If they’re smart they’ll leave Aaron Cross alone, because based of this film alone his story has nowhere else to go. But then again Hollywood needs easy money off of a recognizable franchise so prepare to watch them sully the Bourne name in the coming years.


-Raven McCoy

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Readers Talkback
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  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:13 a.m. CST


    by BD Mahony

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:13 a.m. CST


    by BD Mahony

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:13 a.m. CST


    by BD Mahony

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:24 a.m. CST

    damn ballsdeep, you went deep into that first.

    by Nichole

    You shot your load. Big time.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:36 a.m. CST

    I don't think Aaron killed

    by BillEmic

    the security guards at the factory, just knocked them unconscious.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:37 a.m. CST

    The first one is always quick.

    by BD Mahony

    Got to knock it out to get ready for prime time.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:53 a.m. CST

    Thats Aaron Cross, he's so hot right now.

    by leeloo_dallas_multipass

    Aaron Cross.

  • ...Capone liked it and of course Harry loves it and makes TDKR comparisons in his weekly web show...pfft.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 6:28 a.m. CST

    "of which he takes no notice of."

    by Wyatt Elling

    Way to set up a construction to avoid a dangling participle, and then go right ahead and use a dangling participle anyway, even though it's redundant in context. Professional writers! Anyway, Tony Gilroy is a hack. His scripts were the least interesting thing about Greengrass' movies.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 8:21 a.m. CST

    This review is crap and totally missed it.

    by codecrackx15

    Yes, he is an active agent as you see from some flash backs and he needs the pills because it ups his mental and physical abilities (or so he thinks) and he doesn't want to return to the mental state he was while in the war before the program. The second part is about getting to the place where the pills are no longer needed and staying alive before the project is completely shut down. He doesn't go about saving any fellow agents because if this reviewer stayed awake at the beginning of the movie he doesn't know how many their are or even where they are. Rachel Weis's character only later tells him how many but she doesn't know where they are so running around to save people you have no idea the location would be pretty freaking stupid. This movie sets up the characters for the sequel and it was done really well to continue from the point of the 3rd in the Bourne Trilogy.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 8:56 a.m. CST

    RAVEN MCCOY Fails To Live Up To Its Predecessors For Aicn!!

    by adeceasedfan

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 9:44 a.m. CST

    of which he takes no notice of

    by Corman

    This is incorrect, of course, but has absolutely nothing to do with a "dangling participle."

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 10:18 a.m. CST

    I'm so sick of setup movies

    by Autodidact

    Can someone just tell a good, self-contained story please?

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 12:56 p.m. CST

    Sup Raven

    by Fico

    How are you? What's going on these days? Everyone okay in the McCoy family? Maybe we can get together for some caramels or something, let me know.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 2:28 p.m. CST

    ''This movie sets up the characters for the sequel"

    by Robert Evans

    That's probably the most damning praise a movie can receive lately. Such a copout. Make a good movie THIS TIME. The worst thing in Amazing Spider-Man was that lazy ass, "Don't understand what's going on? Neither do we, but we'll explain it in the sequel!" tacked on coda in the end credits.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 5:56 p.m. CST

    Just Got back from this movie and it's great.

    by MainMan2001

    One more person comments on the fact that matt damon isn't in this movie's like yeah no shit. Get over it. The movie is expertly directed and not boring at all. Only complaint is the ending isn't that amazing and kinda abrupt to me.

  • Aug. 11, 2012, 5:57 p.m. CST


    by MainMan2001

    oh, a hack....right...clearly you know nothing about film dude. I mean have you seen Michael Clayton. A brilliant film.

  • But sometimes the rogue agents chase him. With big guns. But he only has a little gun. Over roof tops and through traffic and stuff. And he wins in the end. Roll credits.

  • Aug. 12, 2012, 12:50 a.m. CST

    Holy fuck that's a run-on sentence

    by WWBD

    "I like that Aaron has a sense of humor and is a bit more lively than Bourne but Aaron doesn’t have any of the same cares or concerns about the issues that were brought up in the previous films for this to be described as a Bourne sequel other than the events that are going on around him connect to the last film, of which he takes no notice of. " - - why oh why can't AICN higher some real writers?

  • Aug. 12, 2012, 4:06 a.m. CST


    by degausser

    Dude, that's not a run-on sentence. It would be if she left out the 'I like' at the beginning though.

  • Aug. 12, 2012, 4:08 a.m. CST


    by degausser

    You are thinking of prepositions.

  • Aug. 12, 2012, 1:24 p.m. CST

    Harry likes this movie...

    by Jordan

    What? I can't believe this. Harry opens his latest show saying he saw Bourne Legacy and "oh my god this is a really good movie." What? No. This movie is categorically bad. Sorry. Harry, how can I possibly take your reviews seriously? This guy hated Dark Knight Rises and then calls Bourne Legacy a good movie. D'ookay.

  • Aug. 12, 2012, 8:16 p.m. CST

    You guys weren't watching the movie

    by Mr_Satan

    He needed the "chems/meds" because without them he'd be a little special aka high functioning retard. He said so when he talked to the doctor. And cycling him off the meds made him permanently intelligent. Anyone would do that as well.

  • Aug. 12, 2012, 10:35 p.m. CST

    Bored out of my skull!

    by Nick Michalak

    Damn straight with this review! I wanted to walk out on this mind numbingly BORING film several times! Such a lifeless, soulless film. I can't imagine anyone thinking this is exciting, interesting, or enjoyable. It just felt like nobody was trying. Tony Gilroy must not have given a crap writing or directing this thing. It's not a steaming pile of shit. It's just boring and pointless.

  • Aug. 13, 2012, 1:03 a.m. CST

    So Raven Mccoy has Drug Issues.

    by tailhook

    Understood. You told a lot more about yourself there than you did the movie. They made it pretty clear that he needed the pills so they could survive, and once he found out she could free him from them, that was their main objective and it was no longer about the pills, it was about his freedom from the program and the pills. They were the only thing tethering him to the program. That said, I concur that by and large this seemed like a fairly small story, like an introduction to the character. The Bourne Identity of Aaron Cross.

  • Aug. 13, 2012, 5:17 a.m. CST

    Thank you codecrackx15

    by Composite_Beppo

    And others for pointing out that the reviewer either was texting during the movie or maybe read a synopsis on IMDb - really, AICN, are you that hard up for columnists that you'll take reviews where people either didn't watch the film or weren't paying attention? Jebus - keep it with Quint, Capone and Nordling and other vets - let the hacks put their reviews in the talkbacks.

  • Aug. 13, 2012, 9:02 a.m. CST


    by Dogmatic

    When the Terminator-style assassin at the end slammed into that concrete pillar at 60 miles an hour I audibly went like "OOoooooHHHH MANNNN!!!!" It has been a LOOONG time and few and far between that a movie got a loud audible reaction of me other than a comedy like the first Hangover.

  • Aug. 13, 2012, 6:18 p.m. CST


    by Jordan

    Back to the Future Part II