‘The Bourne Legacy’ overstretches its thin material
The Bourne Legacy
Directed by Tony Gilroy
Written by Tony Gilroy and Dan Gilroy
Well, two out of three ain’t bad. Jeremy Renner’s had a decent year, starring opposite Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol before fending off aliens as one of The Avengers. But The Bourne Legacy, where he replaces Matt Damon as a new super-spy running for his life on a quest for freedom, is his first definitive attempt to be a big movie star. As much as Renner feels right to headline an action movie, The Bourne Legacy, which is at least 20 minutes too long and has too little story to tell, isn’t the right fit for his talents.
Renner is Aaron Cross, an elite member of Operation Outcome, which is meant to be a less flawed version of Operation Treadstone, the program that created uber-spies like Jason Bourne. As Cross meets at an Alaskan rendezvous point with a fellow Outcome member, the rest of the world is finding out about Treadstone, as seen in spliced-in bits from The Bourne Ultimatum. In reaction to the potentially disastrous news, government agent Eric Byer (Edward Norton) is tasked with removing all assets associated with Treadstone, Outcome, and similar classified units. Cross manages to survive an initial attempt on his life, but needs medicine to maintain his Bourne-like abilities, so he seeks out comely scientist Marta Shearing (Rachel Weisz) to help fend off his attackers.