The handsomely talented Matt Damon became an action film superstar with his leading role as the Treadstone agent with amnesia, Jason Bourne. He appeared in the critical and financially acclaimed Bourne trilogy from 2002-2007 and returned to the role following a nine-year hiatus in last year’s disappointing Jason Bourne.
Although the film is the second highest earning Bourne installment worldwide behind 2007’s Ultimatum, critics noted that the redundantly bland plot and overall generic feel of it easily made Jason Bourne the worst of the Damon films.
Damon Talks Bourne
During the press tour for Damon’s latest The Great Wall, he was (of course) asked about a return for a possible Bourne 5 and what would need to be done in order for the franchise to continue:
“It would have to be a pretty incredible story to get us all back on the horse… This last one didn’t do as well as the one we did 10 years ago, so maybe people are done with the character.”
Damon notes the importance of having “a good story” is key in order to continue with the franchise and does mention how enjoyable creating the films are:
“Look, we all love working together and those movies are a lot of fun to make so we sure would be happy to do it… If we can figure out a good story… I think everybody is leaving the door open, as we did at the end of this movie, in hopes that we can come up with an intriguing story for the next one.”
Where Have We Heard That Before?
Now many Bourne fans – including yours truly – were ridiculously ecstatic at the prospect of Damon returning to the Bourne franchise following the less-than-stellar Jeremy Renner take in The Bourne Legacy. We all vehemently refreshed various movie news sites in order to see what the latest was on the film and felt immense jubilation at the idea of Damon and Paul Greengrass, the director of Supremacy and Ultimatum, collaborating once again.
Fans of the series were well aware of the idea that Damon would only return if a) Greengrass would return to direct and, b) if the right story was going to be told. He stated back in 2007 that they could “get the gang back together” for a fourth Bourne if “there was a great idea behind it.”
With news that the supremely fantastic Academy Award winner, Alicia Vikander would star and Julia Stiles and Greengrass were set to return, many could not wait to see the next installment of this beloved franchise!
And then ‘Jason Bourne’ released…
By no means was it the worst action film ever made, it just severely disappointed from the immense hype it generated and the final product that was riddled with its terrible utilization of shaky cam – the same camera style used virtually flawlessly to film its predecessors – and dialogue cliches that were abhorrently outdated.
Whether we see a return to Bourne with Damon at the helm, someone completely new, or scrapping the whole franchise for another ten years, let’s hope the story for the future Bourne installment is one worth being told.
There were many additions to the 2016 film roster that were enjoyable, awesome and epic. We were given some of the best comic book films to date, including Captain America: Civil War and, of course, Deadpool. Horror was at an all-time great this year with the spectacularLights Out and Don’t Breathe… Not to mention, La La Land dancing its way into our hearts and wallets. With the great, unfortunately, comes the not-so-great and there have been some doozies this year.
What this list will focus on is not the worst films of the year but the ones that had an immense amount of potential going in to it that ultimately let many viewers down in a fiery storm of disappointment. So if you were looking for the Kevin Spacey classic, Nine Lives where he plays a talking cat, you will probably see it in another list.
1. Jason Bourne
Release Date: July 29th, 2016
The Matt DamonBourne trilogy is regarded as one of the best trilogies of all time, known for its intriguing premise, spectacular characters and insanely phenomenal action sequences featuring everyday products like pens and toasters. When it was announced that a fourth installment was to be released, fans of the trilogy (myself included) could not contain their excitement at seeing Damon back in the role that made him a household name. What we got was an incredibly generic action flick that does not live up to even an ounce of anticipation complete with sequences that were relatively passable. I am convinced Tommy Lee Jones was asleep for a majority of his scenes.
You have Michael Fassbender in the lead role, Marion Cotillard and Jeremy Irons in supporting roles and the director of the 2015 Macbeth adaptation at the helm of this video-game-to-film-adaptation. Assassin’s Creed was slowly being regarded as the video game adaptation that may possibly finally be the great adaptation audiences and gamers have been waiting for! After a lukewarm reception for its initial trailers and its release in mid-December, we will still be waiting for that great adaptation. There are many who believe it was a nice action flick, however for the anticipation it was building and the incredible lore of its game, Assassin’s Creed fell short of paving the way to be the leading video game adaptation. With its convoluted mess of a plot and characters who had the emotions of a refrigerator… Maybe Uncharted stands a chance to be that leading adaptation when it releases never? Or the Alicia VikanderTomb Raider set for 2018? We can hope! If there is one thing we learned from its performance, riding on the coattails of a popular title does not always equal unbelievable success.
Suicide Squad is arguably one of the most divisive films of the year because it certainly divided audience members to those who believe it is one of Warner Bros’ best comic book movies to those who believe it is the worst film of 2016 and all those in between. The anger certain audiences had even garnered a petition called “Don’t listen to film criticism“, which asked for people to sign it and boycott listening to critics because “[you] may enjoy a movie regardless what the critics say about it.” Suicide Squad had an incredible first trailer set to Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” which encouraged tons of audience members to be hyped for this latest comic book film… This will put the DCEU on the map since Batman v Superman was not the powerhouse it was expected to be! The final result included massive shifts in tone, ridiculously blatant editing issues and awkward/undeveloped characters. Regardless of the problems it had, the Squad generated $745 million worldwide and we are getting a Gotham City Sirens spinoff with Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn which is an enormous plus for its fans.
The premise of Passengers is pretty intriguing. Two people awaken from an induced hibernation to be trapped on a spaceship headed for a planet colony only ninety years away? Sounds awesome! With the casting announcement of fan favourites, Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt, many expected this film to be a hit with audiences and an awesome addition to the sci-fi genre. Unfortunately, many critics concluded the film is a prime example of “style over substance” and with a current score of 31% on Rotten Tomatoes, audiences ultimately chose to spend their money elsewhere. The combined star power of Lawrence and Pratt could not save this ship from crashing into the proverbial box office meteor as it has earned $45 million thus far on a $110 million budget.
Releasing prior to Suicide Squad, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice pitted together two of the biggest heavyweights in the comic universe. It was also going to be the first appearance of a new Batman with Ben Affleck attempting to shed the Daredevil image from everyone’s brains. It was the second installment of the DCEU behind 2013’s Man of Steel, also directed by Zack Snyder, and was supposed to finally kick off the DCEU with a bang! Unfortunately, its release ultimately garnered more of an “eh” instead of that bang Warner Bros. was hoping for. The film made $873 million which is a huge achievement and shouldn’t really be considered a failure, however it did not reach that billion-dollar mark the DC execs were secretly hoping for. Criticism of the film pointed to its overabundance of subplots and the fact that the actual “versus” between Batman and Superman occurred for roughly fifteen minutes. Not to mention the infamous MARTHAsequence that will haunt the dreams of critics forever.
They Won’t Kill Martha If You Just Click This For My Review
6. X-Men: Apocalypse
Release Date: May 9th, 2016
Do you guys remember X-Men: Apocalypse? Me neither. Coming off of Days Of Future Past, X-Men: Apocalypse featured all the right people including Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence, the incredible Oscar Isaac as the titular Apocalypse and Sophie Turner of Game of Thrones fame… So what went wrong?! Expecting it to perform Days Of Future Past numbers is rather unreasonable since it was the second highest X=Men installment (excluding Deadpool), however it did not perform as well as expected. Perhaps this was a case of unrealistic expectations since so many loved DOFP, however the unimpressive CGI sequences combined with actors who seemed as unimpressed as the effects fell on Apocalypse itself.
7. Independence Day: Resurgence
Release Date: June 20th, 2016
I think the worst thing about this sequel to the classic silly blockbuster, Independence Day is the fact that Resurgence manages to pull a complete 180 on what made the original so enjoyable. The 1996 original is not a cinematic masterpiece by any means yet it is fun! With characters you enjoy seeing and want to share a drink with while attempting to outsmart aliens. There are also some incredible feats in visual effects with Independence Day, specifically that iconic White House explosion scene. Twenty years on, including fan favorites Jeff Goldblum and Bill Pullman cameo could not save it from the bland, boring schlock that is Resurgence. The film attempts to set up future sequels which is mistake #1 so many of these types of films seem to make: STOP SETTING UP FOR MOVIE #2! MAKE US CARE ABOUT THE MOVIE YOU HAVE NOW! Resurgence could have been another fun blockbuster that would be a wonderful back-to-back feature with its original. The final result was taking everything you loved about Independence Day and creating something the complete opposite of it.
8. Hail Caesar!
Release Date: February 5th, 2016
One of the few included in the list that is certified fresh, this Coen Brothers comedy is not terrible by any means. It has occasional moments of humor and a ridiculously talented A-list cast including George Clooney, the future Han Solo in Alden Ehrenreich, Scarlett Johansson and Channing Tatum as a dancing sailor! Unfortunately, because of how revered the works of the Coen Brothers are, Hail Caesar! simply did not live up to the hype that these names generated. The captivating Coens cinematography is certainly present however the lack of an interesting plot and another overwhelming sense of style over substance all contributed to this film about the Golden Age of Hollywood ultimately falling short of expectations.
9. Zoolander 2
Release Date: February 12th, 2016
I feel for those people who thought seeing the sequel to the Ben Stiller classic, Zoolander would be the perfect Valentine’s date. Zoolander 2 is another addition to the failed comedy sequel (see: Dumb And Dumber To, Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues) that some believe came out much too late. Although many of the original cast returned to this sequel, released fifteen years following the original, audience members chose to stay away from this attempt at being really, really good looking. The failed attempts at humor by utilizing references from the first one and an endless array of tiresome cameos were just a few reasons why this sequel did not live up the immensely quotable and incredibly silly original. The truly sad part is the original managed to earn more at the box office than this sequel andit made an insane amount on home video on top of it being considered a box office failure.
Release Date: June 10th, 2016
Prior to the release of Assassin’s Creed, many expected Warcraft to fill the void of the video game adaptation because of how insanely popular the Warcraft series is. Travis Fimmel of Vikings fame and Toby Kebbell, known for his portrayal of the antagonistic Koba in the Planet Of The Apes franchise, all starred in the film along with Paula Patton, Dominic Cooper and the wildly talented Ben Foster! The film did very well overseas, generating over $386 million and allowed Universal to make back its production budget. Domestically, the film earned a measly $47 million, a number that is rather shocking when you think about how much money the “Warcraft” name generates through all of its branches. Critics were also not loving Warcraft, pulling in a 28% on Rotten Tomatoes with an average score of 4.2/10. Fear not, lovers of the Duncan Jones adaptation, there are still talks of it receiving a sequel since it did perform incredibly at the foreign box office!
Release Date: July 15th, 2016
The final example that divided moviegoers was the remake of the beloved 1984 classic, Ghostbusters. Taking away the issue of gender politics, many believed the original Ghostbusters is an untouchable entity whereas others wanted to see a modern, updated version of it. Judging Ghostbusters (2016) on its own merits, the ultimate result features serviceable performances from its main cast that make you chuckle in the moment then forget immediately why you were laughing. Many concluded that there are some interesting sequences utilizing CGI however there are a number of characters many found insufferable because of their lack of development and/or trope-filled behavior. For those interested in the Ghostbusters universe, original director Ivan Reitman revealed that there are going to be more Ghostbusters films, “they’re just in development right now.” Whether that means a direct sequel to the one released this summer or a whole new gang specializing in ghost busting, keep an eye out for more ghosts in the future… Many ghosts who, according to Ghostbusters (2016), apparently have dicks.
The entirety of Jason Bourne felt like the beginning of one of the previous Bourne movies.
On my 13th birthday, I pleaded to my parents to buy me a pony. They surprisingly rejected my birthday wish (thanks guys).. My other wish was to watch the newest and (at the time) last EVER Bourne movie, The Bourne Ultimatum… For my 22nd, my best friend took myself & the crew out to the resurgence of Bourne with Jason Bourne,one of my most anticipated movies of the year/my life.
I’m not even mad at the final product…
disclaimer: I won’t be discussing The Bourne Legacy in this review. Any mention of the previous Bourne films refer to the original three (Identity, Supremacy, Ultimatum) starring Matt Damon.
It wasn’t the worst action movie in the world. Far from it. The action set pieces were quite entertaining and honestly, it was just so nice seeing Matt Damon in the role that made me fall in love with him… I don’t mind so much that they focused on Bourne’s past again because those kind of new revelations could be enthralling af and, in the first half of the movie new revelations arose that made me genuinely intrigued, but the entire plot felt very paint-by-numbers and not up to the Bourne standards we are used to. There were one or two twists/turns that felt interesting and a few scenes that were great but overall, the story just really wasn’t that invigorating.
Alicia motherfucking Vikander was the shining light in this dreary hole. She is easily the best part & addition to the franchise. I truly loved her portrayal of the young and naive yet cunning Heather Lee and I believe this woman can do no wrong. Matt Damon gives a relatively neutral performance with nothing too spectacular coming out of him which was a major disappointment since one of my favourite aspects to Bourne in the Trilogy was Damon’s ability to emote with his eye movements… This scene from Supremacy pops up in my mind where he’s completely stone faced yet his eyes gradually look up at the CIA Agent on the phone and he knows he has to conjure up a plan to escape. This was in the second film though, so maybe if another Bourne is made he’ll be able to gauge that performance again ifthe material is there. Tommy Lee Jones is also in the movie. He’s just there. I honestly believe he gave up on acting like 20 years ago so now he just shows up on set when he’s around and speaks the words on the paper.
As I mentioned, the action set pieces were entertaining but not engaging. There was a ton of shit happening on screen that definitely pleased the eye, but I probably won’t ever feel the need to revisit it again, save for a scene or two. I actually didn’t mind the staple Paul Greengrass shaky cam since I really loved that aspect in the latter two Bourne films. The shaky cam for Jason Bourne was enjoyable, although I could have done without the shaking when characters looked at their phones and that final fight scene… Ooh boy. Our climactic final fight scene was reduced to When Shaky Cam Goes Bad and the editing cuts were everywhere. The dialogue was a bit clunky at certain parts and during a particularly important fight sequence moreshould have been said! Also the fucking hacking, dude. It was honestly laughable at times.
Any self-respecting movie, TV series, book, alien manifesto, whatever should neveruse the words “enhance” or “mainframe” in their works when dealing with the hacking.
I don’t want to bring up the previous Bournes too much but another aspect of the Trilogy I admired were the antagonists. The people who wanted to bring Bourne down. What I loved so much about the Trilogy was the fact that these damn people weren’t mustache-twirlers who wanted to see him burn. They had legitimate concerns with Jason Bourne surfacing and were actual characters with flaws and difficulties that were multiplied when faced with dealing with him. There was also a social media/privacy subplot that I actually didn’t mind as much as others, however I honestly think they could’ve cut down virtually every scene about it and only focused on the Technology Convention, leaving more room for Bourne & co.’s development… MILD SPOILERS: There was also a blatant slap in the face that occurred toward the beginning of the movie that was shoehorned in ONLY to create a “gasp! Drama!” moment. The entire fucking movie would’ve had the same outcome had this not occurred and it truly upset me. END MILD SPOILERS.
If you’re a fan of the Bourne Trilogy and are looking for an addition to this beloved franchise that is at the same calibre of the previous three or better, Jason Bourne that is not. If you’re looking for a blockbuster with entertaining action sequences and would like to see where everyone’s favourite CIA asset has been for the past nine years, check out Jason Bourne.
So did anyone expect seeing a new Bourne trailer tonight? I SURE AS SHOOT DIDN’T and ohman am I way too hyped for July 29th.
There is a reason why I rank my reviews by Matt Damon heads. Besides the fact that he is an incredible looking specimen, that man is a fan-fucking-tastic actor and his role as Jason Bourne was themovie that put him on the map for me. To see him team back up with direction from Paul Greengrass, who helmed Supremacy and Ultimatum, only works to heighten my expectations.
Seeing Matt Damon back in the role that made me fall in love with him and he appears to be skilled the art of complete bad assery (I’m sorry..) makes me feel every emotion a human can feel that is related to feeling good… HE PUNCHES A GUY OUT IN ONE SHOT, MAN.
I need to calm myself down before I completely lose it and vomit all my Bourne Fanboyness everywhere. T-Minus 5 months.