With our finger firmly on the pulse we take a trip back to 2002 for The Bourne Identity.
The movie is great. We love it so much that we veer off topic and discuss watches. Tune in to find out which brand of watch our noted horology fan Reegs doesn't approve of. Listen on in shock and awe as Sidey muses over his next potential watch purchase!
There is also some discussion about the film, it's effect on the action movie genre and the behind the scene kerfuffles during its production.
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Until next time we remain...
Sidey: Midweek movie special for no reason. We're going to talk about the Bourne identity.
Howie: Yeah. I'm going to go for this 2002 2002 film, which at the time, when under the right off for me, I ended up seeing it, I think, towards the end of its time at the cinema, but I was really glad to have seen it. It's based on the Robert Ludlum novels where it stars Matt Damon.
And that's probably the first time I've not done a Matt diamond voice from team America as Jason Bourne, where the pretty stellar cast you got Brian Cox, Chris Cooper, Clive Owen, and you've got a female character franca potentially plays Marie from run Lola run.
Reegs: Yes. Yeah.
Howie: this adaptation of his Robert Ludlums espionage thriller it begins with an unconscious man plucked from the Mediterranean sea by a loaded thought.
He fishermen it builds from, from there, which is Jason Bourne, finding out who the hell he is, what his, where he's from. And it's really riveting. Mainstream film. It's fast paced. It's got real good actions clever choreograph fighting scenes. Basically Daniel Craig's bond copied a lot from this when they realized how successful it was, especially the way
Reegs: Well, it instantly made bond look like a Relic from another era, basically.
Sidey: well, this, this was coming off the back of the Pierce Brosnan. James Bond catastrophes, which is like proper cheeseball fucking crap.
Howie: another day was the last tour. And it was sort of, it's more of a dies the last one where it was
Sidey: Wasn't there. And then this, this was sort of taking a batch of more gritty kind of violent realism.
Reegs: And you still had gadgets and locations and all those and stunts and all those other things, but they weren't being said with a
Sidey: Not in a way and
Reegs: a nod and a wink and a terrible one-liner. They were being,
Howie: And some misogyny.
Reegs: yeah, they were being delivered in fact, by. What was a fairly bland looking human being to be completely honest in Matt Damon.
And, but you, you instantly understand just how, his training and possible super serum enhanced body may have respond to these situations
Sidey: It's effectively a kind of amnesia road, movie sort of feel to
Reegs: sort of captain America. Without being frozen.
Sidey: the kickoff, when he, when he's on the boat, he's, he's got this bank account numbers. Yeah. As a sort of capsule, laser point of thing, like surgically implanted into him. So that that's the first part of the jigsaw, which takes him to the bank vault, which has all these different identities and a fucking shitload of money and a gun.
And so, you know, you can sort of put, put, you don't need to be a genius to sort of figure out that you're some sort of agent, I guess, when with all these different identities and that gun
Howie: being, being naive here Swiss bank accounts like that. Do they have the capability to have items like that? Would they
Sidey: I don't think they know what's in them. Do they?
Reegs: Yeah, I think,
Howie: type of
Sidey: I think probably now in the modern age, you probably have to disclose brand. I think in the old days it was just, you just rented a box.
Reegs: yeah, it would put way if you wanted in there.
Howie: well, this is the thing. The, the part of the film now is where else he makes his way to the American embassy. It was the start of the surveillance culture. And that you start to see you start to see evidence of that, the CIA operatives and looking for him There's absolute banging soundtrack from mobi that whenever you hear the, the, whenever you hear the, the theme music for IOC coming out of the Bourne films and I always find it it's, it's shot on a different type.
How can I explain this?
Sidey: with doc Liman, who was the director? He didn't let the camera operators see any rehearsals. He wanted them all to shoot it for the first time. Having not, not really knowing. So obviously they'd have storyboards and stuff, but they didn't know exactly how it was going to play out. So it was supposed to be the sort of voyeuristic, but slightly.
Uncertain sort of viewpoint
Howie: played a played out better than you could instantly tell it was not playing to the same style of filming that you would see in an American like MCIs or something like that. You could tell it was a European film. Not just because of the locations, but the way it was filmed in a way, it, it was edgy.
It wasn't like filmed live in front of a studio audience with this, and it was like slightly or filter as well. And it's color schemes and,
Sidey: franca, Frank who was the love interest or in this? Yeah, she was in a movie called run, Lola run it. And if you've seen that one but that was a big inspiration on the look and feel of this movie which obviously is about European film.
Reegs: it's amazing. And I'm sure we'll come to this at the end, but it's amazing that this movie was as successful as it was because there was a lot of behind the screens. Shenanigans. So director Doug Liman and the writer, Tony Gilroy clashed almost constantly, Matt Damon, allegedly threatened to leave the project.
A number of times there was issues between the producers and the studios. There were four rounds of reshoots, but actually this is a really fucking good movie.
Sidey: It, like you say, it's incredible that it turned out the way it did because the studio, Doug Liman basically was a fan of the books and really wanted to. So he, he personally went to see grab bloodline to get the to, to get the, the rights and effectively that was the ownership he had of, it was gone after that.
I think obviously the studio basically optioned it, so it took the rights off him and he was suspicious from the get-go of their involvement and they. They were watching the dailies and having a reshoots, you know, Audrey, the script changes and everything. And then there was some endings that were mooted and that was, I think, where Matt Damon fucking hate Southern.
And he was said, Oh, I'm off. I'm not fucking having it.
Reegs: Well, I think they wanted to pursue him an ending where he was like fighting loads of different agents
Sidey: They weren't a montage. they specifically said they want it shot. Like I don't know if they mentioned it from, but they said like Tony, Scott Douglas, he said, we'll go and fucking get Tony Scott to film it then. So he, he obviously didn't return for any of the sequels,
Reegs: A bit like Tony Scott, though, if you can level an accusation at this movie, it's, it's horrible introduction of shaky cam in the fights memorably. There's a fantastic fight between board and another assassin in his own apartment in
Sidey: The pyro,
Reegs: yeah. You get the bio through the hand, which is great. But mostly there's loads of kick-ass stuff happening, which you kind of see maybe an elbow here.
Flung around head there. I mean, it's really disorientating Campbell work and I don't like it. So
Sidey: I don't think it's as bad in this one. As it got in the later movies.
Reegs: the one with Patty Considine is just basically unwatchable. It's just like a
Sidey: you get motion sickness?
Reegs: impressionist blurs as the camera spins. But you do have to pay attention to a Bourne movie, don't you? Because there is a lot of plot Because borne himself is kind of clever and he's taught to find the most simple way to get through any problem.
He's constantly finding things and zipping off left, right. And center.
Sidey: yeah. You see it as training come to the fore, like you mentioned in the,
Reegs: The embassies are really
Sidey: the embassy one, he, you know, straight away. He rips the fire escape thing off the wall. So he knows where to go. And you can see it, even though he doesn't know why he knows it. He knows that he knows it, if that makes any sense.
And he'd go like,
Reegs: the exterior of the building.
Sidey: He really did that. He did that with no stunt double.
Reegs: it looked like it. So
Sidey: I just imagine the insurers saying no fucking way. We let him like the star climb down that fucking 30 foot drop. No, but they did it.
Reegs: probably one of the other things that's worth mentioning is the unbelievable car chase. Which really, really is fantastic. There's a cracking moment of humor in it. In fact, there's a few moments of humor in this film, but there's one in the car chase where he says, Oh, this is going to get a bit bumpy to his passenger and then just fricking plummets the car down a whole row of steps.
Howie: he did that in my mini ones.
Sidey: Doug Liman had no involvement in the culture statements. Unfortunately, I really wish he had both. Cause I kind of, I don't know when I hear something about student involvement or that I tend to want to side with the director and that it was his project and people have sort of waded into it, but it was the, it was the stunt crew and all that from Ronan.
Which do you remember the car?
Howie: Yeah, yeah, yeah,
Sidey: that makes a lot of sense. When you put the two side-by-side fucking incredible car Chase scene. Very good.
Reegs: You do get a pretty cool moment, right? Towards the end of the movie, which I think was as a result of the reshoots, but he he takes one guy's gun and he shoots it. He shoots his comrade upside down using his little finger, then throws the dead body of the first guy over the rail jumps on top of it.
Head caps, a guy as he's falling.
Sidey: Oh, yeah.
Reegs: and then uses the body as a pad to break his fall which is possibly a little bit in congruous given the how realistic the rest of the film seems, but it's kick-ass anyway, so.
Howie: this is what this is. What's led to the bond films, having more of a. Park is it park or type chase sequences and not just like men running down alleys and then turning around. And then the guy chasing, catching up with them unrealistically like the old classic bonds or the detective all the crime type films and, and every film now has to, it has to have some form of death defying fight scene, and it's so spawned.
A shed load of that requirement. Now in any form of action film, I'm looking at the mission, impossible films as well. I know Tom cruise has been clearly influenced by by the fact that someone like Matt, David has done the stunts himself and he doubt
Sidey: well, he's a real dad to have with those names, Tom.
Reegs: I was going to say, Tom cruise started that himself, I think, but yeah,
Howie: The way that Daniel Craig's first bond came out after this, it's a clear reflection.
Sidey: We watched it just recently by Mrs. Likes a bond film every now and then said, boxing day, we we got casino Royale on
Reegs: It's still good.
Sidey: you can clearly see that they've had to press the reset button and reevaluate what they need to do to make it successful action flight. These days, you can't just have that cheesy fucking tuxedo nonsense.
It just doesn't cut the mustard these days. People aren't interested in that that. You go a bit over the top. And I always think, you know, someone gets punched on the nose. That's the end of the fight. You know, these people get pistol-whipped a hundred times in Gallup. Again, I'm saying, come on, I need to go a little bit back the other way.
And just these fights again, a bit fucking silly, but I remember watching this film at the cinema. I went back to see it again at the cinema because it was, it was it was a breath of fresh air in terms of. This is how these films need to be. This one ends, I don't know if they did it because of all the, who hard behind the scenes, but this, this could have been a standalone film and in a way that you don't need the sequel,
Howie: I was hoping it did have a happy ending. You felt like it needed it because obviously in the next, in the sequel
Sidey: I thought it was really fucking harsh if
Reegs: yeah, they just kill his bird straight
Sidey: Like, Oh,
Howie: off a bridge bang.
Sidey: I didn't, I didn't know, like none of the sequels had anything to do with the books. And in fact, this one has very, very little to do with the actual book, but so I didn't know what was going to happen to her. I thought, you know what, they going to have another chase where she just has to go somewhere.
No, if they just fucking share in the head right at the very beginning, then fuck out. That was harsh.
Howie: I think the second one I watched recently, maybe we're getting them all mixed up, but there is a hell of a scene involving a fight and a toaster in Germany
Sidey: Yeah, I course the magazine. And
Howie: there is, there's the fight with borne and the guy in his breaks into his flat in Paris.
And instead of being caught, he just fucking jumps out the window
Sidey: Yeah, I just want to be, you can't be a terror guys.
Howie: Yeah. And you get the idea of what the Treadstone program is about, which is underlying everything that borne is looking for. And, and like you said, Yeah, maybe a little bit more in this film and they could have ended it a couple more.
Right. But I think because of the success, again, the Hollywood juggernaut trails on and they, they can't resist getting rinsing something out as much as they can, which for some things is obviously worked and I have to tell I enjoy it the second one, but I thought it was harsh that they killed off
Reegs: I think I've watched them all. Now. You've got the Bourne identity. You've got the one with Jeremy Brenner.
Howie: Yeah. Yeah. I forgot about that.
Sidey: but legacy.
Reegs: Jason Bourne, the reboot thing. Yeah.
Sidey: I fall asleep through that twice. I've never, I can't say I've seen it and enough of it to know what it's about.
Reegs: They're all quite watchable movies.
Sidey: They become a bit generic after a while, but this one at the time was a real breath of fresh air. Jason Bourne finds a tag, her chronograph in the bank box, which he puts on and he wears that throughout all the other films, the same watch,
Sidey: but he, he wouldn't, I don't know if they officially asked him, but he wouldn't have been a tag representative because he he's a role.
He's a Rolex guy. Matt Damon. He, he had a college reunion and he bought all 36 of his classmates Rolex,
Reegs: that's pretty sweet. I actually don't like Rolex's that much though.
Sidey: Neither do I.
Reegs: I think they're a bit too bling for my tastes.
Sidey: There's only one that I like. It's the Rolex milk house,
Reegs: huh? Tune in next week for more
Sidey: What's your, a concept?
Howie: watch related.
Sidey: one more bit of trivia on it. On the cusp of bio teacher one more bit of trivia. There's a red bag that he has, you know, the, you know, the bag that he gets from the back and he carries it and the textbook Adam Savage from MythBusters.
He now owns that bag and all the props that were in it. There you go.
Howie: I think we should say that the, the, the the Bourne identity,
Reegs: It's a fairly good fail, man. I like