The Bourne Supremacy movie poster
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The Bourne Supremacy movie poster

The Bourne Supremacy Movie Review

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Matt Damon returns in The Bourne Supremacy, the sequel to the mild 2002 hit The Bourne Identity. This time there is more action, a more elaborate plot and a continuous sense of urgency that easily makes it one of the best spy films ever.

Damon is Jason Bourne, the man, who, in the first one, was found floating nearly dead in the Mediterranean with no memory of who or what he was. As time went on, he began to realize that he had been trained to kill, and that he used to be an ultra-secretive CIA agent. The CIA tried to cover its tracks and kill him, but he got the upper hand and ran off to live with the love of his life, Marie (Franka Potente), in India.

That was the plot to the first movie, and, to be frank, The Bourne Identity now appears as mere foreplay for The Bourne Supremacy, which is better in almost every way. This time around, a top Russian diplomat has been murdered and the fingerprint of Bourne is found at the scene of the crime. At the same time, Bourne realizes that someone has found him and decides to stay true to what he said earlier - if he ever even suspected that someone was on his tail, he would bring the war to the CIA's doorstep. And that's entertainment!

The greatest thing about The Bourne Supremacy is that it is one intense film; the story is captivating from beginning to end. As soon as Bourne is attacked for the first time, the movie never lets up until about three minutes before the ending credits, and the stuff in between is no filler. The Bourne Supremacy has some great action scenes, albeit a couple poorly shot ones, but the plot is where the movie is really strong; there are some good twists, lots of manipulation and plenty of calculated moves, everything that a good spy movie should have. From all perspectives, this is where the James Bond franchise should be - actually intelligent.

Damon is excellent in the lead, as is Joan Allen who joins the cast as Pamela Landy, a CIA deputy director who unearths troubling information about Bourne.

The Bourne Supremacy only suffers in a few sections where the direction appears especially clumsy; the camerawork at times is too frenetic. There is one action scene where Bourne is fighting another agent of the same caliber - it is pretty cool, except that we can hardly see the choreography because the camerawork and editing is way too quick. The giant car chase scene at the end, while still intense, perhaps relies a little too heavily on fast editing. I wouldn't be surprised if a new director is found for the third one.

The Bourne Supremacy is one of the most entertaining movies to come out in a long time, and it is smart, intense and all around explosive. In pretty much every way, it makes The Bourne Identity look like a prelude to the real deal.

The DVD only adds to the experience. Though the "Explosive Deleted Scenes" are not very interesting, the several small featurettes provide great insight into the making of the movie. Though these featurettes could have been easily combined to make one big "behind-the-scenes" documentary, Universal kept each "chapter" separate to make it look like there are a lot of features. Each one looks at a different aspect of the movie - mainly the action. "Crash Cam" gives us an interesting perspective as to how they filmed the incredible chase scene, and "The Go-Mobile" adds further information. "Fight Training" and "Blowing Things Up" are pretty self explanatory and fun to watch. There are also small features that look at the filming of the bridge sequence (including the crew rating Matt Damon's wire jump off the bridge, which is pretty funny), the casting choices and filming decisions in general. One nice thing about all of these different elements being separated is that you can watch only a few at a time; each one is about 5 or so minutes long. If you liked the movie, the DVD is definitely worth it.

Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.

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