Monday, December 17, 2012

3 Short Paragraphs: The Bourne Legacy

2012, Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton, Duplicity) -- download

I was mentioning in the last post about the idea of an unnecessary remake / reboot / sequel / prequel, essentially an unnecessary followup movie. A few sequels is expected, building on the popularity of the first and expanding into a franchise.  The proper sequels take what was popular in the first movie and run with it but if they are to be respected, must expand on the story and contain much originality.  We expect a couple of more Avengers movies but if they are always going to start with the gang squabbling but who are united by an army invading Earth / America / Our Dimension then I think they will get boring quickly.  I did not expect The Bourne Legacy to be in the unnecessary category, but really expected it to be a tacked on continuation of the Jason Bourne story but with another operative. What we got was pretty much a recreation of the first movie and the creation of a new series, a reboot if you will.

Gilroy directed Michael Clayton which, while I have not seen again, I remember thinking was an incredibly well put together movie from a smart script to thoughtful directing.  It looked like a good movie and smelled like a good movie.  Gilroy was also the screen writer for all the Bourne movies and while not perfect, suffering from some expected sequelitis, they were pretty good expansions of the story as a whole.  Which is why this one just bothered me.  I expected more.

The idea is pretty intriguing.  While the last movie is taking place, another shadow agency within the US intelligence service (at least one of these guys must have known of Spooky Mulder) is reacting to how the public and the government will deal with the followup of Blackbriar and Treadstone.  So, simply, they decide to shut down their own project.  Yes, that means there were three successor black op projects run through the movies.  And by shutting down, we really mean killing everyone involved from the operatives themselves to the scientists working on the project.  Two survive, one operative and one scientist and together they fight crime... I mean, they fight against their own government as she tries to kill them.  It would have been an acceptable stand alone movie in the same universe as Bourne but not, it had to end (SPOILER yeah) with the formulaic "let's go hide somewhere until the second movie brings back the action."  Bleah.

Bonus Paragraph about the poster -- ONE WHAT ?!?!  We know there was more than one Treadstone agent, as they tried to kill Bourne.  We know there was more than one program as the whole third movie was based on it.  So, ONE WHAT?