Now playing: The Bourne Legacy | Bleader

Now playing: The Bourne Legacy

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Before he joined the Bourne franchise, Stacy Keach delivered one of his most memorable turns in Cheech and Chongs Nice Dreams.
  • Before he joined the Bourne franchise, Stacy Keach delivered one of his most memorable turns in Cheech and Chong's Nice Dreams.
The Bourne franchise continues, starring Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker) as a new superspy in the absence of Matt Damon. Writer-director Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton) responds to this challenge by fragmenting the espionage narrative into several discrete story lines that take place in various locations, much as Alfred Hitchcock structured his underrated spy adventure Topaz (1969). Unfortunately the movie becomes less interesting as the pieces come together and the complex mystery of the first hour gives way to more straight-ahead action sequences. The diamond-sharp cinematography is by Robert Elswitt (Paul Thomas Anderson's regular guy), the striking locations range from the Alaskan wilderness to the streets of Manila, and the supporting cast is above average, with Rachel Weisz, Edward Norton, and Stacy Keach turning in cerebral, nuanced performances (Renner is merely adequate).

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