bourne again

Went to see Bourne Ultimatum with Sarah & Pim on Friday night – and was fairly impressed! Go Bourne! :)

No 3 starts where No 2 left off – with Bourne in Moscow, having just told Neski’s daughter that he killed her parents. There’s an interweaving of the stories of 2 and 3 – remember at the end of two is a ‘6 weeks later’ bit where he’s calling Pamela Landy and she tells him his true name? That scene in 2 is an excerpt from 3 – very cleverly done.

Things are wrapped up, concluded, but more remains to be answered – I’d very much like the Bourne’s to continue. He’s such an engaging character, and one that instantly has your support. And despite learning all the nasty, horrid and just plain creepy things he’s done, you don’t lose that support for him – if anything it grows.

The only slightly dodgy, but definitely frustrating, thing about the film was the camera work during the fight scenes. Director Paul Greengrass was trying, I guess, to convey the sense of panic and speed of the fights – instead you couldn’t focus on anything, the fights were just a jumble of images that I ended up turning my head away from, feeling queasy. It would have been so very much better to stand the camera back a few feet and let the viewer actually focus on the action. Let the viewer see, once again, just how brilliant Bourne is.

There was a debate on breakfast TV last week – Bond v Bourne – which is the best? I’d have to say Bourne. Bond is a relic of the 60’s – a misogynistic, chauvinistic charmer with more toys than talent. I know them’s fighting words, and I know also that there are one or two Bond’s that disprove the theory, but as much as I love Bond I do have to admit he is a little stuck in the past. There. I said it.

Bourne, meanwhile, is firmly entrenched in the present. He could even (perhaps loosely) be described as the MacGuyver of his day – taking and adapting what he needs. This guy was made to disappear, along with your life, which makes him a hell of a lot scarier than Bond, who’d charm you out of your skirt first. At the same time there’s an innocence to Bourne that Bond lacks – a kind of naivete that is disarming and immediately gets you on his side.

And he’s much, much scarier than Bond – you definitely don’t want to be on his wrong side. Where Bond would shoot you and be away with his latest conquest, once Bourne has a bit of vengeance in him you’d never see him coming. He’d give you a mind game, rattle your cage, then possibly leave you alive and feeling guilty. Bourne has a conscience – he’s very protective of those he loves (in the books in particular – which are so incredibly different to the films.. READ THE BOOKS!), and gives no quarter to those physically threatening them, but then is as likely to let you go as kill you.

My flatmate made a good point though. He says that although the films are brilliant, very enjoyable and very watchable, there’s nothing like that moment in the first film when you first discover what Bourne can do. When he’s in Zurich trying to sleep on the park bench and gets roused by two policeman, who are disarmed and unconscious in about 5 seconds. That’s the best, and most shocking, moment in all 3 films – that’s the bit that leaves you wondering and makes you keep watching.

One the whole – as much as I love Connery and Brosnan – I have to go with Bourne. Matt Damon’s Bourne is a tortured soul, literally and poetically, and I can’t imagine him being played by anyone else.

I’ve started imagining Bourne 4…


About Miss J

Gen-x Australian female - out of my mind and my country. Cast adrift, as it were :) Enjoys: cat-cuddling, books, movies, music, theatre, travel, rpgs, cricket, F1 racing and all things to do with the sea..
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