Tuesday, August 07, 2007

bourne again

On Sunday afternoon I finally got to experience the epic conclusion to the Bourne series, The Bourne Ultimatum, an event that has been five years in the making for me. I'll get in trouble if I call "Bourne" the greatest movies of all time, but they are personal favorites for me... in a Top 6 list, the three movies in the series place within it.

The Bourne movies have been wonderfully constructed, portraying a secret agent in a way that hasn't been done before - heroic within reason, clever beyond imagination, and tortured by his own capabilities. They are paced ever so well with the perfect balance of storyline, suspense, and action - not too much or too little in any respect.

I was so happy with the way Bourne Ultimatum tied things together: First, the overlay of time / events between Supremacy and Ultimatum was clever, and I hadn't expected that... I figured it would pick up right where Supremacy left off, but it actually went back in time and filled in events for six weeks prior. The Bourne movies have become known for their car chase scenes - the first movie pushed an old Mini Cooper to it's limit, and the second absolutely destroyed a Moscow taxi-cab. I like how they did the chases in the third one though - a lot of "foot" chases, with Bourne using clever tactics to elude those who were pursuing him by using his seeminly inborn agent abilities. And towards the end of the movie, seeing him tear up New York City in a cop car was fantastic.

I loved the ending - it was perfect, and I couldn't have hoped for anything better. It filled in just enough gaps to leave you satisfied, yet at the same time kept you wondering a bit... what's next? There's lots of talk about whether or not there will be a 4th movie, and I personally hope there isn't (from an artistic perspective). It ended dramatically answering the big question of whether or not Bourne was alive or dead, and immediatly went to credits with Moby's song "Extreme Ways"... but unlike the other movies, Moby did a remix of the song for this movie that seemed to say "this is the end... Bourne is finished now". Plus the end credits were artistically dramatically different which I felt also indicated a definitive end to the series.

All in all, I am so satisfied and relieved that the directors / producers took such care in executing an artisically brilliant action movie, something that in and of itself rarely happens. The movie I highly recommend (as a theater must-see), and if you're behind on the series as a whole, now is the time to get up to speed!

Today you should listen to:
Moby "Extreme Ways (Bourne's Ultimatum)"


Janet said...

I will have to go and see it! I should probably watch the first two movies and refresh my memory :) Have you read the books?

burnshead said...

i actually haven't read the books (yet). part of me wanted to wait until the movies were done before i dove into the books because i hear they are quite a bit different.

read a matt damon interview today - he doesn't want there to be another movie either... but said if there has to be another one, that they should wait a while (10 years) and then reintroduce it. i could see that.

Janet said...

Are there only the three books? Or is there a fourth one?

burnshead said...

there's actually 5 books. the first three were written by the original author, robert lundlum - he died in the early 90's. when bourne supremacy (the movie) came out, the lundlum estate comissioned additional books to be written by eric van lustbader (lundlum's close friend)... so it's a continuation of the series, but kind of a removal from the original author's first concept.

how's that for more than you wanted to know?

Janet said...

Well thanks. I feel smarter now :)