A/V Room









The Bourne Supremacy - US reaction

Compiled by: Jack Foley

IN WHAT looks to be a good year for sequels (based on the critical and commercial success of Shrek 2 and Spider-Man 2), another follow-up looks to have got things right.

The Bourne Supremacy, which continues the story of amnesia-ridden agent, Jason Bourne (as played by Matt Damon) has gone down a storm in America, going straight to the top of the US Box Office.

The film is estimated to have taken about $53.5m (£29.2m) in the three day weekend in the US and Canada, according to Exhibitor Relations, knocking last week's top film, I, Robot, into second place.

It easily beat competition from Halle Berry's critically-savaged superwoman flick, Catwoman, which took only $17.2 million after being mauled in the press.

The critics had mostly good things to say about The Bourne Supremacy, however.

Rolling Stone, for instance, wrote that ‘if you've forgotten the kick you get from watching a globe-trotting, butt-kicking, whiplash-paced action movie done with humor, style and smarts, take a ride with The Bourne Supremacy’.

While Newsday wrote that ‘The Bourne Supremacy is essentially a string of how- will-he-get- out-this-one set pieces, but they have been cooked up with nerve-frying elan by British director [Paul] Greengrass’.

The Washington Post excitedly declared that ‘spy movies just got thrilling again’, while Ebert and Roeper referred to it as ‘one of the best thrillers in recent years’.

USA Today found it ‘a gripping film’, while Variety opined that ‘once again, Damon scores in the title role by never courting audience sympathy and playing his all-American good looks against the hard-shell brutality of the character’.

And the New York Times heralded its arrival by writing that ‘in the wake of 9/11, this globe-trotting post-cold-war melodrama full of standard cloak-and-dagger intrigue has the reassuring aroma of a home-cooked meal served while riding the world’s smoothest roller-coaster’.

Less impressed, however, was the Hollywood Reporter, which felt that ‘every time you feel like you're finally grabbing hold of something involving, the picture once again spins frustratingly out of reach’.

And the Detroit Free Press warned that ‘moviegoers who complain about what a shaky camera does to their innards should pack antacids for this one’.

But the Houston Chronicle praised it for being ‘more action-filled and tense than The Bourne Identity’.

And Entertainment Weekly wittily observed: "The way the film has been made, nothing that happens seems inevitable - which is to say, anything seems possible. There's a word for that sensation. It's called excitement."

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, meanwhile, felt that ‘its good enough to make a third Bourne movie a welcome possibility’.

The Los Angeles Times thought it was ‘brilliantly paced and cut’, while Philadelphia Weekly observed that ‘this dark, daring sequel is Bourne's journey to acknowledge the blood on his hands and atone for sins of his half-remembered past. It's a tougher, more complicated movie’.

But the final word goes to the Denver Post, which concluded that ‘this admirable franchise should change your idea of what makes a good thriller’.

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