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The Bourne Legacy: Movie Review

Hannah Goodwyn


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It’s hard not to compare the new assassin thriller The Bourne Legacy to Matt Damon’s Bourne movies. The first trilogy introduced the movie-going world to an action-packed story of intrigue and government secrets, starring action movie’s greatest protagonist in recent memory, Treadstone assassin Jason Bourne.

This spin-off of Jason Bourne’s plight delivers a new, strong lead in Jeremy Renner, as medicinal enhanced agent Aaron Cross. Fans can expect the same level of intricate fighting and chasing moves in The Bourne Legacy as they grew accustomed to in its predecessors. What it doesn’t have going for it is an overcomplicated script and a somewhat slow start, both contributing to a film with less urgency than the first three Bourne films.


Grafted into a top-secret division connected to the agency that turned on Jason Bourne, agent Aaron Cross was poised to be an asset to deep-cover operations worldwide. When the program goes awry, Cross is forced to run. He soon uncovers a web of sanctioned, targeted strikes as he tries to uncover what the agency was really preparing him and his fellow agents to do.


The Bourne Legacy is written and directed by Tony Gilroy, the writer of all three previous Bourne films. Given his proven talent with the blockbuster trilogy, it comes as somewhat of a surprise that the script is one of Legacy’s weaker points. At times, the dialogue is overcomplicated, especially when it comes to the scientific jargon used by Rachel Weisz’s character, Dr. Marta Shearing. A trimming of the first 20 minutes of the film would also improve the film’s momentum and cut down on its length (It clocks in at 2:15 hours).

The film’s moral dilemma comes to light during a flashblack as Cross is instructed not to let emotion cloud his judgment on missions. He’s called a ‘sin eater’, .  The overriding theme is asking a question: what do you do with power? Cross’ set of skills and the government’s power to eliminate a “target” in seconds are front and center as viewers watch Cross’ story unfold.

Rated PG-13 for violence and action sequences, The Bourne Legacy is not a family movie. It’s a PG-13 level action flick and does include shooting, hand-to-hand combat and foul language.


The Bourne Legacy doesn’t fail the series, but it doesn’t surpass Damon’s movies in quality either.

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About The Author


Hannah Goodwyn served as a Senior Producer for, managing and writing for the award-winning website. After her undergraduate studies at Christopher Newport University, Hannah went on to study Journalism at the graduate level. In 2005, she graduated summa cum laude with her Master's from Regent University and was honored with an Outstanding Student Award. From there, Hannah began work as a content producer for For ten years, she acted as the managing producer for the website's Family and Entertainment sections. A movie buff, Hannah felt right at home working as's