Heres a challenge: name one action blockbuster trilogy of the last ten years thats come close to matching the thrills and spills of the Bourne movies. Because this reviewer, and many others, cant. Theres nothing that runs it even remotely close.
And its ironic too, given that the franchise kicked off with its weakest instalment. The Bourne Identity finds the title character (played by Matt Damon) without knowledge of who he is, yet with a whole host of deadly skills, and for two thirds of its running time is a strong and enjoyable action thriller. A muddled last act spoils it slightly, but fortunately, it brought in enough to convince the studio to pony up for a sequel.
What a sequel it is, too. The Bourne Supremacy is an electric, pulse-pounding second episode, as Bourne this time is forced to confront his identity issues again, after being framed for a murder he didnt commit. Its a compulsive game of cat and mouse with some superb moments, and it leaves you salivating for the concluding chapter.
That came in the shape of The Bourne Ultimatum, and this proves not only to be a terrific ending to the franchise, its also the best of the three films. The word relentless barely does it justice, but in terms of direction, staging and draw, it simply has had no big screen blockbuster equal in some years.
The end result is a trilogy that diligently tells a well-structured story, and injects it with fascinating characters, amazing set pieces and immense rewatch value. The Ultimate Bourne Collection simply demands to be seen and rewarded. And a fourth chapter wouldnt do any harm, either --Simon Brew
As The Bourne Identity begins, a man who may or may not be Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) is found floating in the Mediterranean Sea and is hauled onto a fishing boat. When the ship's doctor examines the unconscious castaway, he discovers two bullet wounds and an implanted device that displays a Swiss bank account number. With nothing but this code, the amnesiac Bourne travels to Zurich and gains access to a safe-deposit box containing a gun, thousands of dollars in various currencies, and valid passports from numerous countries--each listing a different identity. Within minutes, Bourne is on the run from a seemingly ever-present agency, relying on language and fighting skills he didn't even know he possessed. Offering $20,000 for a ride to Paris, Bourne gains the reluctant help of the nomadic Marie (Franka Potente). Meanwhile, the shadowy organization, headed by a tough-talking bureaucrat (Chris Cooper), sends numerous assassins (including the Professor, played by Clive Owen) after Bourne and Marie. As their situation grows more perilous, the two strangers struggle to find out who Bourne really is and why they are being hunted.
The Bourne Supremacy re-enters the shadowy world of expert assassin Jason Bourne (Damon), who continues to find himself plagued by the splintered nightmares from his former life. The stakes are now even higher for the agent as he coolly maneuvers through the dangerous waters of international espionage-replete with CIA plots, turncoat agents and ever-shifting covert alliances-all the while hoping to find the truth behind his haunted memories and answers to his own fragmented past.
The Bourne Ultimatum: All he wanted was to disappear; instead, Jason Bourne is now hunted by the people who made him what he is - a legendary assassin. Having lost his memory and the one person he loved, he is undeterred by the barrage of bullets and a new generation of highly-trained killers. Bourne has only one objective: to go back to the beginning and find out who he was. Now, in the new chapter of this espionage series, Bourne will hunt down his past in order to find a future.