The Bourne Identity

2002

Action / Mystery

Synopsis


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Director

Cast

Franka Potente as Marie
Matt Damon as Jason Bourne
Chris Cooper as Conklin
Clive Owen as The Professor
720p 1080p
800.08 MB
1280*544
English
PG-13
English
23.976 fps
1hr 59 min
P/S 36 / 113
1.60 GB
1920*816
English
PG-13
English
23.976 fps
1hr 59 min
P/S 34 / 234

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Sleel 8 / 10

Hooray for decent, more realistic spy films!


I have grown extremely tired of the typical formula spy film like Bond, or the juvenile stunt exhibition "Triple X." There have been a bare handful of spy films that feature relatively realistic spy thrillers, especially recently with a concentration on spectacular movies that have less substance than cotton candy.

Besides "The Bourne Identity," "Ronin" is the only other recent spy movie I
can think of that didn't feature skydiving, bungie jumping, skiing downhill while shooting innumerable bad guys, laser pens, cars with ejection seats, or silicone breasted women with names you'd be vaguely embarrassed to say in front of your mother. Most of the crap that passes for an espionage film has no plot or reason for existing other than to meet a quota of explosions and cleavage in order to draw the summer action film crowd.

While "Bourne" does not have a particularly deep plot, it is consistent and focused. The focus is entirely upon Bourne and how he is to deal with having no memory of his past, being hunted without knowing why. Some people have complained about being confused by the movie. I for one, do not need to have everything spelled out since in many cases this smacks of unreality in the first place; the essence of espionage is drawing conclusions from very sketchy information. If you can't handle a little of that, you probably should stick to Disney films or TV's Scooby Doo where everything is explained in the end. We never find out about what is in the case in "Ronin" and I can live without some information being filled in about Bourne's past.

To those who have moaned about the incompatibility of the book and the movie, seek help. There are probably several things that work in the book that would either be boring and take too much screen time to explain, or would be viewed as cliche to modern screen audiences. As I remember, I liked the book, and I definitely like this movie. I view any movie adaptation as an interpretation of the book rather than a translation from words to pictures anyway.

As for realism, most of the action scenes are believable, no super-gadgets are to be seen, no incredibly lovely models fall madly in bed with Bourne, and the hero shows definite signs of physical vulnerability despite a very high level of training and competance. As someone who has trained in martial arts for over 10 years, unrealistic fight scenes are a pet peeve. The fights in "Bourne" are fast, nasty, and very realistic while still being entertaining for the layman. (And yes, taking a gun away from some idiot who is standing well within your striking radius without getting shot is definitely doable, though I had serious doubts until we tested it for ourselves with plastic dart guns in the dojo several years ago).

While not being perfect, "The Bourne Identity" is, simply put, several grades above the typical spy film. Being focused on an individual level rather than involving itself huge political ramifications lends it another layer of respectability rather than detracting from it as some comments have implied since it remains a human problem on a comprehensible scale. The mysteries that are left are bigger mysteries for Bourne than us, and I think should be viewed as intentional omissions rather than loose ends. The implausibilities are kept to a minimum and the realism to as high a level as possible while still being spectacular enough to meet the expectations of the genre.

Reviewed by Benjamin Cox 9 / 10

First-class spy thriller but nothing to do with the books - 93%

After years of being on the run, Jason Bourne has finally been caught... and added to my growing DVD collection. "The Bourne Identity" is a cracking espionage thriller with a surprising choice of lead actors. A gamble, as it turns out, that pays off in spades. This is easily one of the best all-out action films I've seen in recent years and even blatant discrepancies between film and book fail to sour your enjoyment, unless you're a serious Ludlum reader (which I am not but am thinking of rectifying this situation after watching this).

Baby-faced Matt Damon plays Jason Bourne, picked up by sailors drifting out to sea. He has no memory of who or what he is, he has several bullets still in him and a curious gizmo in his hip which tells him of an accountant held in Zurich. Gradually, Jason begins to put the pieces back together again, especially when he discovers that unknown individuals are out to kill him for reasons beyond him. Luckily for Jason, he has an uncanny instinct for violence and escapism which will doubtless prove useful. Along for the ride is Marie (Franka Potente), a German civilian who quickly gets caught up in the fracas with the aid of a funky red Mini Cooper.

Sharp, snazzy and well paced, "The Bourne Identity" is a blast-a-minute spy film in the great traditions of James Bond. Exotic locations throughout Europe, a sexy female companion and OTT set-pieces - what more could you ask for? Thankfully, Bourne is much more of an intriguing character than 007 as his memory loss provides him (and us, of course) the perfect vehicle for clue-chasing and baddie-bashing. Amnesia is a tricky thing to sell to an audience for credibility but this is a rare exception. He has no snappy one-liners, no cheesy chat-up lines. He feels much more like an actual spy rather than Bond's increasingly frequent self-parody of such. Neither does the action feel too contrived as a gripping escape from the US embassy in Paris proves. The subsequent car-chase also is exciting and very well produced, though nothing to touch "Taxi" (the French original, anyway) for a car chase in Paris. Both Damon and Potente (who I've only seen in "Run, Lola, Run") are first-class, portraying the unwitting fugitives with tense brilliance. The soundtrack is also first-rate - pulsating and rarely intrusive, typical Moby but if you're a fan (as I am) then you'll lap it up.

There are some slight issues I have to question, though. The character of principal super-assassin The Professor (one-time Bond candidate Clive Owen) felt a little stereotypical to me and not enough is explained by the time the ending arrives, meaning I'll have to catch Bourne again in "The Bourne Supremacy". But the fact is that this feels like a modern spy film. It's tense, thrilling and engrossing as you continue to discover more about Bourne and what he does. It's more contemporary than Bond and it pisses all over "xXx". Despite initial belief that he was too nice to play a hard-ass spy, Damon proves me wrong and in the best possible way. "The Bourne Identity" comes highly recommended from this viewer, who is now off to buy some Ludlum books. And that is mighty praise indeed.

Reviewed by gbheron 9 / 10

What a Spy Movie Should Be Like These Days


James Bond and Ethan Hunt take notice. "The Bourne Identity" is my new standard for contemporary spy thrillers. Gone (or almost gone) are the special effects that James and Ethan rely on all too heavily. Hell, in those franchises the special effects have virtually replaced story and characters. "The Bourne Identity" has a very straightforward story to tell, a mystery that slowly unravels. Spycraft is not all about technical gizmos, but requires human brains and human brawn (and a fair amount of gunplay and car chases).

Set in various locales in Switzerland and France during the winter much of the visuals for "The Bourne Identity" are gray and damp. That's a plus, Monte Carlo and like locales can get boring. Mat Damon is great as Jason Bourne, fished from the Mediterranean mostly dead by gunshot wounds. A total amnesiac, he slowly realizes that he possesses the deadly skills of a well-trained assassin, and that someone is out to kill him. Franka Potente is equally good as the young woman swept up in his life and forced to run with him. Run or be killed.

I can't say enough good things about this movie. Doug Limon, thanks, you did a great job.

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