THE BOURNE SUPREMACY is an exhilarating thriller that's a thriller really
thrills for a change. Making a running time of close two hours feel almost too
short since it flies by so fast, the movie is an adrenaline-pumping ride. And
speaking of running, Matt Damon, again impressive as Jason Bourne, spends most
of the movie running from those chasing him, while we're running right along
with him the whole time. Don't be surprised if you leave the movie sweaty and
exhausted from the workout.
The intelligent story is complex enough to engage our brains, but it's never so
complicated that we get hopelessly lost. Aspects of the story include a mole
in the CIA and a nefarious Russian oil baron who has a contract out on Bourne.
After being framed, Bourne's ex-company -- The Company, a.k.a. the CIA -- is
ready to kill him too, although they'd prefer to talk to him first about a
crime that he didn't commit but they think he did. Don't worry -- you'll have
no trouble following the plot or the action, of which there is plenty. In
chases on foot and by car, the movie really delivers in its action sequences,
which are uniformly stunning.
Damon's Bourne is the best character that he has ever done on screen. Both
stoic and explosive, his Bourne is an agent that puts ersatz ones like James
Bond to shame. Without an ounce of superhero blood in him, Bourne,
nevertheless, accomplishes amazing feats by combining his physical skills with
his keen mental abilities. His sense of timing is superb.
The rest of the cast, including Franka Potente and Brian Cox, are quite good
again. Julia Stiles, given a little bit more to do this time, demonstrates
that she is more than a pretty face in the film. She is especially impressive
in a brief episode of intense fright. Joan Allen is on board for the first
time as a senior level CIA executive. Allen, as always, is terrific.
I don't care which one of Robert Ludlum's many spy novels they choose to make
next. I'm ready to see Jason Bourne again, regardless of the story.
THE BOURNE SUPREMACY runs a fast 1:49. It is rated PG-13 for "violence and
intense action, and for brief language" and would be acceptable for kids around
10 and up.
My son Jeffrey, age 15, gave the film ****, saying that he liked it even better
than the first one. He said that it had high energy and good laughs, and he
thought Damon was great. His only complaint was that he thought Stiles was
Copyright © 2004 Steve Rhodes