Review: The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)

Matt Damon returns as Jason Bourne in Paul Greengrass's 2007 action thriller The Bourne Ultimatum. Julia Stiles co-stars

The third and final Bourne film starring Matt Damon as the lead character manages to find a satisfying middle ground between the previous two Bourne installments. This time motivated more by himself than a sudden threat, Bourne searches for the truth of his origins with the agency whilst dodging a new breed of trained killers.

This installment has many similarities with the first which work in its favour. The plot is once more compelled by character instead of a forced outside influence, returning the story to Bourne himself. Once again joined by a female companion in the form of Nicky Parsons (played well by Julia Stiles, a veteran of the franchise), Matt Damon is given an opportunity to flesh out his character and construct a more engaging screen presence.

Whilst this repetition could be seen as Paul Greengrass’s attempt to cash in on the strengths of the franchise before he was handed the reins, it is a welcome change back to a successful formula in place of the muddled effort of The Bourne Supremacy.

Once again, the film uses its hyper-kinetic action sequences to keep the pace up throughout the running time, featuring another memorable chase scene through Tangier, and the most impressive fight scene of the entire franchise. A brutal scene between Bourne and one of his many adversaries, the close-quarters fight is as brutal as it is exciting.

The Bourne Ultimatum even has a proper conclusion, marking a satisfying conclusion to the film, if not the franchises narrative as a whole, no doubt a deliberate strategy to allow for The Bourne Legacy. No doubt audiences can expect more innovative action sequences and puzzling narrative concerning faceless government men watching from a distance as their operatives, or ‘assets’, move in the night with deadly intent in future installments.

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