'The Bourne Legacy' builds on pre-existing story

December 13, 2012 


    These DVDs also were released this week (when two prices are listed, the second is for Blu-ray):

    New movies: Ice Age: Continental Drift ($49.99 3-D, $39.99 Blu-ray, $29.98 DVD); Ted ($29.98, $34.98); Backwards ($29.99); Gayby ($24.95); Kill 'Em All ($29.98, $24.98); Why Stop Now ($29.98, $24.98); Doomsday Book ($29.98, $24.98); Creep Van ($26.98); Collision Earth ($24.99, $19.98).

    TV: Law & Order: Criminal Intent — Season 9 ($44.99); The Story of Film: An Odyssey ($69.95); Girls: The Complete First Season ($49.99, $39.98); Mankind: The Story of All of Us ($39.95, $29.98); Futurama: Volume 7 ($39.99, $29.98); Hazel: The Complete Fourth Season ($34.93); Gunsmoke: The Seventh Season, Volume 1 ($36.98); 41: Inside the Life of George H.W. Bush ($19.98).

    Older films: Django! double features (A Man Called Django/Django and Sartana Showdown and Django Kills Silently/Django's Cut Price Corpses; $6.95 each); The Criterion Collection: Following ($39.95, $29.95); The Criterion Collection: The Qatsi Trilogy ($79.95 DVD or Blu-ray); Les Misérables (1998) ($19.99 Blu-ray); Dick Tracy ($26.50 Blu-ray); The Portrait of a Lady ($19.97, $12.99).

    Other: Families of the World: Families of Italy ($29.95).


The Bourne Legacy, the fourth installment of the hugely successful franchise that started with Matt Damon as the memory-depleted assassin Jason Bourne does not star Damon (or his character) and does not arrive by way of director Paul Greengrass.

But The Bourne Legacy looks surprisingly good onscreen, precisely because it's so good on paper.

Written and directed by Tony Gilroy, who penned all three Jason Bourne movies, The Bourne Legacy achieves its first order of business with intelligence and imaginative dexterity, building on the pre-existing story.

For the most part, it takes place in an impressively recognizable world, where science, hands-free geopolitics and the modern security state intersect to create human warriors who behave like the human equivalent of drones. It's that world and its ruthless thought-leaders that Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner) must navigate — with his memory intact but driven by just as dramatic an inner need. At least that's clearly what Gilroy intended; unfortunately, Cross's personal struggle isn't nearly as narratively propulsive as Jason Bourne's amnesia.

Still, Renner makes for an intense, highly watchable franchise-anchor-in-the-making.

The DVD includes commentary with Gilroy and others; deleted scenes; a production featurettes called Re-Bourne and Capturing Chaos: The Motorbike Chase. Also, on Blu-ray, there's a featurette on how Renner prepared for the role of Cross; an on-location featurette; Man vs. Wolf and wolf featurettes; and a behind-the-scenes character featurette on Aaron and Marta (Rachel Weisz).

The Bourne Legacy retails for $29.98 or $34.98 on Blu-ray.

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