Eppler: It's time to kill 'Bourne'

Eppler: It's time to kill 'Bourne'

The time has come for us to do the thing that so many CIA henchmen have tried and failed to do: kill "Jason Bourne." 

After nine years away from the franchise, Matt Damon and writer/director Paul Greengrass returned this summer to show us that all that time off didn't give them any new ideas or direction for the series about an amnesiac CIA operative being hunted by his own people.

This fourth time around for Damon is more of the same: the CIA watches him, he watches them watching him, and occasionally there's a scuffle that ends with Bourne getting away again after wrecking a few city blocks.

Bourne once again faces off against a crusty old CIA baddie, just like in his last three movies. This time, it's Tommy Lee Jones who seems much less interested in catching his man than he did in his Oscar-winning role in "The Fugitive."

Even Damon looks bored with Bourne. He rarely speaks in this film, and when he does it's monosyllabic. And his brooding that's supposed to register as tortured and complicated looks more like constipated. 

I still dig Greengrass as an action director - watch as the camera seems to move with the punches. And the climax where Bourne wrecks half the Vegas strip for no good reason is super cool if you're not thinking about innocent tourist casualties. 

I'm not saying this is a terrible movie or even the worst of the summer. But the real problem with the "Bourne" series is it has nothing new to offer other than plugging in Jeremy Renner that one time. By the end of this movie, nothing has changed for Bourne himself, and we've essentially reset for another one. I may be rooting for the CIA to take him out when that film comes.

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