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The Bourne… Redundancy?

February 11, 2010 Leave a comment

It seems to be official that a 4th Bourne film is already in the works. Which is quite suprising given the fact that almost everyone involved with the first three films swore blind that Ultimatum would be the last. But I suppose that’s what happens when a trilogy makes almost $1 billion at the box office.

At this point the 4th installment is still unnamed (although Paul Greengrass joked about a 4th installment as The Bourne Redundancy… this was before a 4th film was seriously considered) but Matt Damon has definitely signed on to reprise his role of Jason Bourne. It’s also clear that the film will not be based on a Robert Ludlum book (as the first three were) and so an original script is planned, with whispers of a pre-quel storyline.

Whichever way it goes I’m happy, in fact I just bought the first three films on DVD. It’s a kick ass series, with lots of action and not too much dialogue… the way films should be.

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Invictus – a review

December 17, 2009 2 comments

Clint Eastwood has become a pretty big player in the film industry. When he directs a film, you expect a lot. So when you go to watch Invictus there is a weight of expectation. You’re thinking Million Dollar Baby, Mystic River, Changeling… all of which are dramatic and beautiful. So when the film opens it’s a bit of a shock. This doesn’t look like Eastwood… this looks like a film made by South Africans. The film isn’t glossy. The acting feels a bit wooden. The characters (and actors) are all too South African. And that’s why those of you who are expecting the gloss and glamour of a Hollywood production are bound to be disappointed. However, this definitely is an Eastwood film. It’s just not an American film. It’s South African, it’s real and it’s gritty. At times the acting does feel a bit awkward, or wooden. But this isn’t a script that was written to be smooth or funny or quirky. This is reality. This is a story of a country at a crossroad, of real people, with real problems. Once you’ve come to grips with that you quickly become engrossed in the film.

I will admit that there are some ‘lapses’ in the film. There is the occasional continuity error. The music can be a bit jarring. The live action rugby scenes can be a bit flat. And the scenes of South Africans packed into their lounges, pubs, and shabeens to watch the World Cup final also feel a bit cheesy.

But the beauty of the film is that, as with so many of Eastwood’s films, the story drives some key themes. It is about integrity, forgiveness, hope and love. And what makes the film so much more impactful is that this isn’t a fictitious story aimed at neatly delivering some key messages to a lost generation. These characters weren’t dreamt up to be endearing. The story is true. Critic David Ansen says it best when he says ‘Yet the lapses fade in the face of such a soul-stirring story – one that would be hard to believe if it were fiction. The wonder of Invictus is that it actually went down this way.

It seems that South Africa is moving into the centre of the world’s attention. And what better way to begin our move than with the story of Invictus. It is a story which should remind all of us where we have come from and should inspire us to be more than we think we can be. Invictus definitely won’t be a box office dominator (especially overseas) and it won’t provide the whole family with two hours of fun and laughter. But it should be prescribed viewing – go see it.