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Movie Info

RATING:

PG-13 for violence and intense action, and for brief language

RELEASE:

July 2004

TIME:

1 hr. 48 minutes

GENRE:

Drama, Action/Adventure, Thriller

STARRING:

Matt Damon, Franka Potente, Brian Cox, Joan Allen, Julia Stiles

DIRECTOR:

Paul Greengrass

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER:

Doug Liman

DISTRIBUTOR:

Universal Pictures

 

Please Note

In providing movie reviews on our site, CBN.com is not endorsing or recommending films we review. Our goal is to provide Christians with information about the latest movies, both the good and the bad, so that our readers may make an informed decision as to whether or not films are appropriate for them and their families.

MOVIE NEWS

The Bourne Supremacy

By Megan Basham
Guest Reviewer

CBN.com One thing's for certain--Russian taxicabs can sure take a beating. Or at least that's the impression you get in one of The Bourne Supremacy's heart-stopping action sequences.

Now, as a woman, I do not use the phrase "heart-stopping action sequence" lightly. There are few things I find more irritating than the drawn-out, predictable chase scenes that pass for action these days. In fact, I usually plead with my husband to wait until the latest "thrill-a-minute" blockbuster comes out on DVD so that at least I can get a snack while the hero is leaping from expensive European sports cars onto sleek European bullet trains.

So I'm happy to report that The Bourne Supremacy suffers from none of the tragically hip trappings that usually come along with spy flicks. This is not to say it skimps on action--it just makes them so visceral you may very well find yourself looking around on the floor for your breath.

We catch up with Jason Bourne where we left him two years ago at the end of the groundbreaking Bourne Identity. He is still with the naturally lovely Marie on a beach in India, trying in vain to remember who he is and why so many people are trying to kill him.

Only the second film in this series, Supremacy reaffirms the franchise as a remarkable departure from today's typical spy fare. Though it retains the requisite panorama of stunning international locations swarming with turncoat agents and ever-shifting covert alliances, it offers the audience much more than mere style. CGI-free and focused on the emotional impact of violence, it is far less entranced with spectacle than with watching Matt Damon's eyes direct the plot of the story.

His performance in the title role is once again razor sharp. Though they are reportedly best-friends, when it comes to acting, Damon may very well be the "anti-Ben." He is as understated and shrewd as Affleck is unruly and grandstanding. Damon doesn't need cheap, "I'm-so-handsome-couldn't-you-just-die" swagger to fill up two hours of screen time, he has talent to do that.

But while the acting and direction are top-notch, what I like best about this thriller is that it presents violence-soaked Americans with a spy who comes to understand the spiritual consequence of taking life--even if one is just following orders. The assassinations Bourne carries out not glamorous; they're gritty and ugly and wreak havoc with his soul, even when he knows the bad guys have it coming.

Bourne becomes more restrained throughout the film as this truth sinks in, even going so far as to try and make amends to the victim of his first agency "job." Unlike James Bond or Ethan Hunt, Jason Bourne never experiences satisfaction from killing one of his adversaries. Instead, we get the feeling that he is entirely sorry for what he has had to resort to in order to save his life.

Though it carries moral messages (or perhaps because it does) The Bourne Supremacy is still supremely thrilling. Rarely does it fail to stimulate our eyes even as it speaks to our heads. That's a rare thing for this genre and it is certainly worth cheering (or at least paying 8 bucks) for.

Entertainment Grade: A- / Moral Grade: B

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