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August 17th, 2012

Movie Review - The Bourne Legacy

The Bourne Legacy

Starring: Jeremy Renner, Rachel Weiz, Edward Norton, Zeljko Ivanek, Stacy Keach, Scott, Glenn, Rachel Black, and more.

Directed by: Tony Gilroy Story by: Tony Gilroy Screenplay by: Tony Gilroy and Dan Gilroy Inspired by: Robert Ludlum's Bourne Series Cinematography by: Robert Elswit Original Music by: James Newton Howard

Premise: As several government agencies try to cut off all possible connections with several other agencies due to exposure of their underhanded dealings by Jason Bourne, Aaron Cross finds himself being targeted for termination along with all the other agents who've undergone special training and DNA modification. Escaping with the use of the very skills they want to kill him for having, he needs to find help as the drugs keeping him who he is today slowly work out of his system. (Rated PG-13)


1) Acting - Total Thumbs Up: I first became aware of Jeremy Renner in the short lived series "The Unusuals", so I was quite eager to see what he would make of Aaron Cross. He did not disappoint. Rachel Weiz was a great foil for Mr. Renner's character as Dr. Marta Shearing. Her reactions were believable and her shock at events and trying to deal with them very vivid when creating a contrast against Aaron Cross's calm demeanor to such life changing events. With Edward Norton, and his awesome portrayal of the unscrupulous Eric Byer, a great dynamic, three dimensional story arises.

2) Plot/Story - Thumbs Up: Since this film is a side story born of the Bourne Series, concurrent events precipitating the cause for the troubles of Aaron Cross and Marta Shearing get shown in glimpses throughout different parts of the film. If you've watched the series, you'll feel an immediate connection as these scenes are shown. For those who've not watched any of the previous Bourne films, it might be a little difficult since some of the context is lost, but shouldn't impact the enjoyment of the film overall. 

While there were no real big surprises in the plot, there were a lot of minor bits that were. Dr. Shearing's realistic reactions to the stressful and unusual situations she finds herself in covered several of these surprising bits. Also the real reason Aaron Cross loves the program so much, and what he will lose if he can't get more the medications that are part of the special agents's regimen. Plus a few others.

And with the addition of seeing behind the scenes through Mr. Norton's character, the film had more depth and a greater dynamic, that complimented the film overall.

3) Stunts - Total Thumbs Up: Since Jeremy Renner proves quite capable of pulling off the physical part of his role, the use of the shaky cam, which has increased in usage over each of the Bourne films, was kept mostly to a minimum. I was very happy about this, as too much shaky cam usage tends to dilute the action scenes, plus it also make it difficult for some people to watch. (On the last Bourne film, "The Bourne Ultimatum", I probably watched a whole ten to fifteen minutes of content out of the two hours because it made me ill to look at it.) 

The film is full of great chases - some with vehicles and some without. My favorite was the long chase in Manila. There was a very cool, multi-dimensional aspect to the foot chase, which was inspired. Really well done.

4) Locations/Cinematography - Total Thumbs Up: Several long camera sweeps proved incredible in setting the tone and utter bleakness of a couple of locations. While a lot of the camera work pulled back on the training area for Cross, this was turned the other way during their stay in Manila. There the camera work was very close, weaving with the characters through the narrow streets, only at times pulling back and showing the vast amount of people in the very active city for the second, concurrent chase occurring over the rooftops. Very nice!

Conclusion: A well executed film with loads, and loads of action. Make sure your bladder is empty because in the film's last twenty minutes you will not want or be able to leave your seat. 

Rating: 4.25 out of 5 (Hubby's Rating: Worth Full Price of Admission)

Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic



(2015) Fantasy

The King is Dead! Long Live the Undead King!

"What are you implying?"

The magister glided forward and scrunched down beside him.

"That in order to bathe, you must first actually get into the bath."


(2014) Urban Fantasy

It took everything from her, except revenge!

The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."


(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.

(2007) Young Adult – Fantasy
“Harry Potter meets Dragon Riders of Pern”


“Do you need any help?” she asked. “Just tell me what you want me to do. If you prefer, I’m sure I can round up at least a few people to come over and give you a hand.”

Kel slowly shook his head. “It’s all right. Thanks anyway.” His voice lowered to where she almost couldn’t hear it. “This is all part of my punishment.’

She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

Kel cocked his head in Clarence’s direction. In a flash, she understood. None of this was an accident. Clarence had landed there deliberately, hoping to make Kel pay for all he went through in the past month. She shook her head, not wanting to believe this, but what the dragon said next took any doubts right out of her head.

(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”


Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

“You were right. She is the one.”

(2002) Adult/YA – Japanese Fantasy Adventure
“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”


Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.

(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”


Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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