I never had high hopes for The Bourne Legacy; I wasn’t a skeptic about spin-offs at the time it was released, but it certainly was one of the first times I doubted the release of a film. I very much felt that the studio was trying to cash in on the success of the Jason Bourne trilogy.
I think that was probably the feeling that a lot of people had, which is why it flopped, a shame for Jeremy Renner who is an awesome actor and person. The Bourne Legacy though just could not live up to the legacy of the Jason Bourne trilogy.
I think very much where it failed comes down to the plot. While there is a book called the Bourne Legacy, the film bares little to no resemblance to it, and I gathered that just from comparing the blurb on the back of the book to the film’s plot. The film is then highly dependant on the other films.
While franchises do make references back, films are generally stand-alone. But no Bourne Legacy – it is tagged onto the end of the Bourne Ultimatum and is far to dependant on the other films to work on it own.
Also many of the critical plot drivers were very much ridiculous. The legacy of Jason Bourne rests on the physical and psychological training he endured. Aaron Cross in comparison was doped, and need to keep being doped to perform. While it makes sense that the government wanted to be able to maintain a leash on their ‘assets’the entire idea just completely undermines the point of the Bourne stories.
They are meant to be about the government losing their grip on their ‘assets’, rather than their assets suddenly being threatened by the political manoeuvring that Aaron Cross faces because of the ‘Legacy’ Jason Bourne’s actions have caused.
This film wasn’t a necessary addition to the Bourne franchise, and as much as I love Jeremy Renner, I don’t like this film. It was meant to be dealing with the legacy of the other films, and it just ended up as the poorer cousin stuck in the shadows.