Jason Bourne (2016)


Introduction

Jason Bourne is a 2016 American action thriller film directed by Paul Greengrass and written by Paul Greengrass and Christopher Rouse.

It is the fifth instalment of the Bourne film series and a direct sequel to The Bourne Ultimatum (2007).

Matt Damon reprises his role as the main character, former CIA assassin Jason Bourne. In addition, the film stars Tommy Lee Jones, Alicia Vikander, Julia Stiles, Vincent Cassel, Riz Ahmed, Ato Essandoh and Scott Shepherd.

The character Aaron Cross, from The Bourne Legacy (2012), does not appear in the film because director Greengrass wanted to focus on the title character, and because actor Jeremy Renner was unable to participate due to scheduling conflicts.

In Jason Bourne, Bourne remains on the run from CIA hit squads as he tries to uncover hidden truths about his father, while CIA director Robert Dewey (Jones) orders the head of cyber-security Heather Lee (Vikander) to hunt him down.

Outline

Twelve years after he exposed Operation Blackbriar and disappeared, Jason Bourne has finally recovered from his amnesia, isolating himself from the world and making a living by taking part in savage, bareknuckle fighting bouts. In Reykjavík, Nicky Parsons, who has been collaborating with a hacktivist group led by Christian Dassault, hacks into the CIA’s mainframe computer server to expose its black ops programmes. This alerts Heather Lee, the head of the agency’s cybersecurity operations division, and CIA director Robert Dewey. In the process, Parsons finds documentation concerning Bourne’s recruitment into Treadstone and his father’s role in the programme. She travels to Athens to find and inform him.

In Greece, Parsons and Bourne meet at Syntagma Square during a violent anti-government protest. They evade CIA teams sent after them, but Parsons is shot by the Asset, an ex-Blackbriar assassin who also holds a personal grudge against Bourne, having been captured and tortured as an unintentional consequence of Bourne’s exposure of Blackbriar. Before she dies, Parsons passes Bourne the key to a locker which holds the CIA files.

Seeking answers about his past and family, Bourne locates Dassault in Berlin. Decrypting Parsons’ files, Bourne discovers that his father Richard Webb was a CIA analyst involved in the creation of the Treadstone program. A malware programme implanted in the files gives the CIA Bourne’s location, and Dewey sends a team to capture him, while Lee remotely erases the files. Dassault attacks Bourne, but is incapacitated. Lee alerts Bourne to the team closing in, as she believes that he can be persuaded to return to the agency. Using the few leads he gathered in Berlin, Bourne tracks Malcolm Smith, a former Treadstone surveillance operative, in London and arranges to meet him in Paddington Plaza.

Lee persuades Dewey’s boss, Edwin Russell, the Director of National Intelligence, to allow her to contact Bourne in person to attempt to bring him back in. Dewey, who opposes her plan, secretly authorises the Asset to eliminate her team and kill Bourne. Bourne evades Lee and the Asset long enough to confront Smith. Smith admits that Richard Webb created Treadstone, but tried to prevent them from recruiting his son. Under Dewey’s orders, the Asset killed Richard Webb in Beirut, making it look like a terrorist attack, in order to persuade Bourne to join Treadstone. Smith is killed by the Asset, while Bourne escapes and finds Lee. She admits that she is not comfortable with Dewey’s methods and directs Bourne to a technology convention in Las Vegas.

Dewey is scheduled to attend the convention for a public debate on privacy rights with Aaron Kalloor, CEO of social media giant Deep Dream. Kalloor is the public face of corporate social responsibility in the Internet age, but he was secretly funded by Dewey in the startup stage. Dewey intends to use Deep Dream for real-time mass surveillance alongside the latest incarnation of the CIA’s targeted assassination ‘Beta’ programme, known as “Iron Hand”, a much more ruthless and sinister version of Blackbriar in which the assassin can intentionally murder anyone to get to the target. When Kalloor has second thoughts about giving the CIA access to Deep Dream, Dewey authorises the Asset to assassinate Kalloor and Lee – having discovered her conspiracy moments ago. Bourne thwarts the assassinations and confronts Dewey in his suite. Dewey appeals to Bourne’s sense of patriotism as he stalls for time, before his right-hand man Craig Jeffers intervenes. Bourne kills Jeffers, only to get shot in the process; however, he is saved when Lee shoots Dewey dead before he could shoot Bourne. After covering Lee’s involvement in Dewey’s death, Bourne pursues the Asset on the Las Vegas Strip and chases him down into the sewers after the pair end up crashing into a casino; they engage in a savage fight that ends with Bourne snapping the Asset’s neck, killing him and avenging Parsons.

In the aftermath, Lee convinces Russell that Dewey’s methods were outdated and offers herself as Dewey’s replacement as CIA director and Russell’s eyes and ears within the CIA. She outlines her plan to use Bourne’s trust to bring him back to the agency, but is prepared to kill him if he refuses. Lee meets with Bourne, promising him that the CIA will become the organisation he thought it was when he joined. Bourne asks for time to consider her offer and walks away.

Lee returns to her car and finds a recording, made by Bourne, of the conversation she had with Russell which reveals her true intentions about murdering Bourne as she says “…then, he’ll have to be put down.”

Cast

  • Matt Damon as Jason Bourne, a former CIA assassin who disappeared after publishing details of the CIA’s targeted assassination programmes.
  • Tommy Lee Jones as Robert Dewey, the current director of the CIA and leader of the Iron Hand programme who intends to take down Bourne after the exposure of Blackbriar.
  • Alicia Vikander as Heather Lee, head of the CIA Cyber Ops Division.
  • Vincent Cassel as The Asset, a Blackbriar assassin working for the Iron Hand programme. The Asset was captured and tortured as a result of Bourne’s actions in The Bourne Ultimatum and harbours resentment toward him because of it.
  • Julia Stiles as Nicky Parsons, Bourne’s former Treadstone contact in Paris.
  • Ato Essandoh as Craig Jeffers, a CIA agent and Dewey’s right-hand man.
  • Riz Ahmed as Aaron Kalloor, CEO of Deep Dream.
  • Scott Shepherd as Edwin Russell, Director of National Intelligence.
  • Bill Camp as Malcolm Smith, a former CIA analyst who retired to the private sector.
  • Vinzenz Kiefer as Christian Dassault, a hacker, whistleblower, and the leader of a group of privacy activists.
  • Gregg Henry as Richard Webb, Jason Bourne’s father and creator of the original Treadstone programme, who was murdered by the Asset.
  • Stephen Kunken as Baumen, a Deep Dream employee who is Kalloor’s assistant.

Bourne Films

You can find a full index of Treadstone (TV Series) here.

You can find a full index and overview of the Bourne Franchise here.

Trivia

  • Jason Bourne premiered in London on 11 July 2016, and was theatrically released in the United States by Universal Pictures on 29 July 2016.
  • A 3D version was also released limited Asian countries, namely China, India, the Philippines and Vietnam.
  • The film received mixed reviews upon release; critics praised Damon’s and Vikander’s performances and action but criticised the story; some critics also expressed disappointment in Jeremy Renner’s absence and ignoring the events of The Bourne Legacy.
  • Despite mixed reviews, the film was a box office success, grossing $415 million worldwide.
  • Principal photography on the film commenced on 08 September 2015.
  • In late November 2015, filming took place in Kreuzberg, Berlin.
  • In early December 2015, filming started in Washington, D.C., where shooting took place at Constitution Gardens.
  • Filming in Las Vegas, Nevada was scheduled to begin on 14 January 2016, lasting until 21 January 21.
  • Production on the film concluded on 01 February 2016.
  • Filming also took place in March 2016 at Woolwich Arsenal station in Greenwich, London.
  • Part of the film (some scenes set in Greece) was shot in the city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife (Tenerife island, Canary Islands, Spain).

Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s): Paul Greengrass.
  • Producer(s): Paul Greengrass, Matt Damon, Frank Marshall, Jeffrey M. Weiner, Ben Smith, and Gregory Goodman.
  • Writer(s): Paul Greengrass and Christopher Rouse.
  • Music: John Powell and David Buckley.
  • Cinematography: Barry Ackroyd.
  • Editor(s): Christopher Rouse.
  • Production: Perfect World Pictures, The Kennedy/Marshall Company, Captivate Entertainment, and Pearl Street.
  • Distributor(s): Universal Pictures.
  • Release Date: 11 July 2016 (Odeon Leicester Square, UK) and 29 July 2016 (US).
  • Running Time: 123 minutes.
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

 

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