The Bourne Supremacy


Resurrecting the raw, urgent realism of Doug Liman's original anti-thriller, Brit director Paul Greengrass puts Matt Damon's amnesiac assassin back in the crosshairs - - only this time, framed for murder by the CIA, it's Bourne's turn to play the hunter.

Hired for the visceral kick of Bloody Sunday, Greengrass proves a perfect fit, the shivery immediacy of his docu-verité camerawork giving the action a fantastic edge. He takes it way too far, mind - the paper-shredder editing is a headache on prescription - but when it works, itreally works: whiplash fight sequences rattle teeth in their sockets and the movie hurtles to its conclusion through a devastating crash'n'smash car chase. In the midst of it all is another angsty, spring-coiled turn from Damon, especially impressive given the script offers him little beyond paranoid memory judders. Indeed, missing the first film's who-am-I? motor, Supremacy doesn't have depth or direction in its narrative hyper-jumble, rarely pausing long enough to soak up its characters' choked emotions. Even the immense Brian Cox can't hold Joan Allen's unconvincing agency investigator in focus, meaning anyone who didn't catch The Bourne Identity will be straining to stay on track. No doubt about it, Bourne needs to start filling in the blanks. But if this stylish, kinetic - - and lucrative - - franchise is fast burning up places to run, it's still something to relish.

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