The Bourne Legacy Reviews
In the age of shared universes, Universal decided it was a good idea to make another Bourne film in 2012, after years of trying to get a 4th Damon film off the ground. While the script and direction from Tony Gilroy relies heavily on the same tropes of the series, I can't say it's a film that shouldn't have been made. It should have just deviated from the source material even more than it did.
With that said, I like the fact that the film takes place at and around the same time that 'Ultimatum' did. The approach to have Jason Bourne's actions impact Cross' and the rest of the Black Ops agents was a smart one. It's a far better decision than having Renner be the re-casted Bourne. But as Cross, Renner is quite good. I'm not sure he got cast in all of these franchises, but he doesn't seem to disappoint.
Renner is complemented by a powerful performance from Rachel Weisz, who plays Cross' former doctor. Much like Bourne and Marie in 'Identity', they have great chemistry together and Weisz thankfully more with her character than what's written on the page. Edward Norton plays the new suspicious C.I.A figure, which has become a classic Bourne trope at this point. Although I think Norton is a good actor, he didn't do anything as Eric Byer that impressed me all that much. With minimal screen time together, it was tough to grapple onto Byer's perusal of Bourne.
The action and cinematography are much easier to watch without Greengrass' infamous shaky cam. With that said, there is far less action mixed with a slower pace. The film doesn't really become interesting until 30 or 40 minutes in.
In all, The Bourne Legacy largely handcuffs itself and falls into the series tropes too often to be considered on the level that the previous 3 films are. But good performances from its leads and some interesting action makes it a nice cable watch.
+Renner & Weisz
-Falls into the same tropes
It doesn't live up to the original Bourne trilogy, and is more disappointing than actually bad, but the Bourne Legacy does benefit from Jeremy Renner's performance, good direction and for the most part dialogue from Tony Gilroy and some fun action scenes.
Solid cinematography and decent editing salvage this film from the slow pace in the first half-hour. A shame that the great acting by all involved didn't revolve around a more compelling script.