Jason Bourne (2016)

Seeing Matt Damon as Jason Bourne has a certain nostalgic quality. His strength and aggression is at complete odds with his inner turmoil. The film comprised of a few very well choreographed pursuit scenes and a mix of the believable and the unfathomable.

There is a part of Bourne’s past which he has blocked out. There are some files found by a hacker. The files contain a clue and the rest is a series of cat and mouse chases across cities.

Technology can be so intrusive and yet we depend on it so much, a constant battle of privacy vs. security. Though this is the underlying theme I wish director Paul Greengrass would have developed it more.

Alicia Vikander has a ‘grey’ character, who will probably be part of the next film. Julia Stiles has a mysterious entry and exit, her motives unclear. Tommy Lee Jones hasn’t aged well, but pulls off the stiff director of the CIA nonetheless.

Fast paced with plenty of destructive chases make for the staple action film.

2.5/5

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The Danish Girl (2016)

Director Tom Hooper, who has handled complex subject matters with films such as ‘The King’s Speech’ and ‘Les Miserables’, attempts a walk on the shakiest tight rope.

The year is 1926. A very important detail, when you deal with what’s unfolding on screen. Sexuality issues, gender crisis, all surface elegantly, with treatment very appropriate to the era. Eddie Redmayne has the Herculean mission of showing his own transition (personality, dressing and persona), which he does with total abandon, grace and dignity.

His wife, played by Alicia Vikander has the even more uphill task of trying to decipher what’s going on, while torn between supporting her husband or not. All this and more where we see how truly difficult it must be for someone to forever be at crossroads with their physical identity.

Ably supported by Ben Wishaw, Matthias Schoenaerts and Sebastian Koch, the characters come to terms with a reality which was unheard of at that time. Though the drama unfolds at a slow pace, it tugs the audience into a world it may know very little of.

The film explores the breadth and depth of an individual’s anguish to deal with themselves. A brave effort.

3/5