Jason Bourne’s still trying to figure out his past as the third Bourne movie begins. The story picks up right where Bourne Supremacy left off and director Paul Greengrass and his cast haven’t lost a step in the three years between films. Bourne’s the ultimate fighter - sorry Randy Couture and Chuck Liddell - and unafraid of taking down anyone who stands in the way of the truth. Although much of the film takes place in foreign locations, Bourne’s journey leads him back to the United States and straight into the lion's den, the place he believes holds all the answers. It also means he’s up against a new uber-bureaucrat (played by David Strathairn) whose agenda doesn’t include letting Bourne return to the fold.
The basic story hasn’t changed in three films, but Damon still manages to play the character as fresh as the day he first stepped into Bourne’s shoes. Damon doesn’t have to prove anything the third time around, but not once does he let down his audience by devoting anything less than 100% of himself to his performance.
The Bottom Line
Director Paul Greengrass’ use of the handheld camera to capture the immediacy of Bourne’s predicament works for the most part. It’s slightly distracting during the first 20 minutes when most of the scenes are dialogue-driven explanatory shots featuring just two actors. But once the story’s set-up and the film segues into the real meat and bones of the story, Greengrass’ signature style is perfect for the crazy chase scenes and spectacularly well choreographed fights. Damon as Bourne takes out the bad guys in cool and ingenious ways, and the documentary-style storytelling is the perfect tool for putting the audience smack-dab in center of the action.
Even while sharing the same basic plot as Identity and Supremacy, there’s nothing recycled about the way The Bourne Ultimatum delivers on the thrills. The Bourne Ultimatum is one of 2007’s best action movies and more than lives up to expectations.
The Bourne Ultimatum was directed by Paul Greengrass and is rated PG-13 for violence and intense sequences of action.