2. Look At What They Make You Give (The Bourne Ultimatum)
David Strathairn’s Noah Vosen is catching up with Bourne, who has discovered his origins through the previously shadowy Dr Hirsch. Edgar Ramirez’ assassin, having previously bagged Paddy Considine’s journo, has Bourne in his sights. Despite his own ramped-up programming, Ramirez wonders out loud, “Why didn’t you take the shot?”
Bourne’s reply is another question, “Do you even know why you’re supposed to kill me? Look at us. Look at what they make you give.”
The exchange has echoes of Bourne’s conversation with Clive Owen towards the end of The Bourne Identity. I work alone. We always work alone. Do you get the headaches too? We get a glimpse of the sheer number of lives destroyed by the CIA’s programmes – minds undone, psyche’s pushed beyond normal limits, human beings de-personalised.
Look at what they make you give. A whole franchise summed up in one line. It is difficult to think of another contemporary action franchise with this much self-awareness and intelligence.