Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Bourne Ultimatum

(Movie Review)

As summer vacation continues, here is another shameless guilty pleasure.

I wouldn't call myself a huge fan of the Bourne series, but they are a pleasant enough waste of time, and in the past I have watched both “The Bourne Identity” and “The Bourne Supremacy”. (Both of which I watched before starting my Movie Review project, and as a consequence I didn't review either of them on this blog. But I did watch them and enjoyed them well enough).

These Bourne films are (as the director admits on the DVD commentary) essentially just long chase scenes. And this film does a good job of keeping up the suspense. Although you’re pretty sure Jason Bourne himself won’t bite it, you’re never sure about the secondary characters, and the film’s creatures use that ambiguity to good effect. There are a total of 3 different scenes in which Bourne is trying to protect 3 different people from assassins. And not all of them make it.

As in all good suspense scenes, the music is an important element. And there is a little staccato up and down rhythm that is played to good extent in all the chase scenes. (It’s also slightly overused and I found it getting a bit annoying near the end of the film. But that’s just a small quibble.)

Since it had been a few years since I last saw a Bourne movie, I was a bit worried I would have trouble following the plot. But that wasn't a problem at all. The plot is kept very simple, and besides Bourne himself there are only a couple of characters returning from the previous movies.
In fact, when the movie was all over I found myself disappointed that Bourne's past hadn't been explored more. This was the 3rd movie of the trilogy, the one that was supposed to explain everything that had happened. Instead I’m still not sure why Bourne lost his memory in the first place. And I’m still not exactly sure why the government has been trying to hunt him down all this time.
(I’m not sure if some of this would be clearer if I re-watched the previous or not).

Well, I guess the ambiguity leaves the door open for another sequel.

Link of the Day
U-M researcher's model says climate change will make storms worse

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