Best movies like The Bourne Identity, from Casino Royale to Ronin

In 2002, the director Doug Limanscriptwriter Tony Gilroy and back and forth Matt Damon have teamed up to create one of the most influential spy thrillers of all time, The Bourne Identity. The film established Damon as a genre-shifting actor, while Gilroy and Liman created a balance of action and intrigue that spawned a slew of sequels and impersonations.

Based on popular novels by Robert Ludlum, The Bourne Identity follows Damon’s Jason Bourne as he searches for clues to his past and tries to figure out why the CIA is out to kill him. Along the way, he meets and develops feelings for a young German woman, Marie (Franke Potente) who joins him on his journey to uncover the truth.

COLLIDER VIDEO OF THE DAY

The film is known for its realistic action and fight sequences, frenetic camera work, and helping to usher in a new era of action stars. The Bourne Identity helped propel public perception of Matt Damon and other dramatic actors who would follow in his footsteps, showing that dramatic actors are able to flex their acting chops and muscles in a variety of different film genres. For fans of the film looking to expand the scope of spy thrillers, here are ten movies like The Bourne Identity.

RELATED: From Cary Grant to Christian Bale, These Actors Almost Became James Bond

Casino Royale (2006)

There is no doubt that there is no Jason Bourne without James Bond, but neither is there Daniel Craig version of Bond, without Bourne. Martin Campbellit is Casino Royale revitalized the film franchise with its grittier look and more realistic action scenes. The spy thriller has all the facets of previous Bond films with Bourne influence throughout. One of the more low-key ties is how grounded Craig’s Bond feels to previous incarnations of the character – something that ties directly into Matt Damon’s portrayal of Jason Bourne.

Atomic Blonde (2017)

By the time Charlize Theron took on the role of Lorraine Broughton in this graphic novel adaptation of “The Coldest City,” she had already established herself as an actress willing to explore a variety of film genres. However, Atomic Blonde busted opened doors for him to be considered a serious action star, similar to Matt Damon’s turn as Jason Bourne. Despite being an Oscar-winning actress, Theron would propel her career into the fast furious franchise, as well as Netflix The old guard thanks to his portrayal of a secret intelligence spy working with a civilian (James McAavoy) to understand what game his government is playing. An added feature of the film is that, like Damon, Theron does the majority of his own stunts.


Beirut (2018)

There are many people integral to the success of the Bourne franchise, but perhaps the most misunderstood of them all is screenwriter Tony Gilroy. The prolific screenwriter has created some of the most intense and intriguing stories on the big screen in the past 20 years. Gilroy wrote every Bourne film Damon was involved in and was able to delicately balance the film’s political intrigue with its action sequences. This was the case in 2018 Beirut (also known as The negotiator) where Jon Hamm plays an American diplomat who must return to his old post to negotiate the life of his former friend. The film won’t wow the viewer with its action sequences, but Gilroy’s realistic script offers viewers the other side of Bourne films – the role governments play in the shadows, away from cameras and reporters.


Traitor (2008)

For fans of the spy aspects of the Bourne film, Traitor makes a great companion because it leans so heavily on what makes spy movies so interesting. The movie gives Don CheadleSamir Norne’s character leeway through the world created by the film. Its deliberate pacing adds tension to the film and the audience’s perception of whether Norne can be trusted. The film has everything fans of the spy genre will recognize, a straight FBI agent (Guy Pearce), an international conspiracy and a fugitive special forces agent.

Salt (2010)

An aspect of The Bourne Identity that gets lost in the action and spy plot is the emotional weight of Damon’s performance. The idea that he’s a serious actor taking on what might be considered a less serious role is important because his ability to connect with the character acts as a window to the audience. This was very much the case with Angelina Jolieis Evelyn Salt who is accused of being a Russian spy and must outrun, fight and outsmart the CIA to prove her innocence. Salt is a film that draws on Jolie’s star stature and bona fide acting ability to make us care about Salt’s plight in the world of espionage. Jolie brings the same level of necessary credibility and vulnerability to the role as Damon, so when she gets ahead of her pursuers, it’s believable; but when she is in trouble, the audience feels for her and is eager to know how she will escape the situation.


Jack Reacher (2012)

The film adaptation of Lee ChildThe famous character of was not without detractors because of the casting of Tom Cruise in the title role, but his role in the spy thriller genre is significant. While Damon’s Bourne is surprised by his ability to fight and be hyper-aware of his surroundings, Cruise’s Reacher brings a confidence to the role that is needed when a man is fighting against the government. The film can be relentlessly violent at times, especially the opening scene, but the way Reacher is able to piece together the clues left for him is believable and thrilling. While fans of the book may have been upset that Cruise didn’t have the physical stature to play the role, his physical confidence provides a degree of believability that’s on par with Damon in Thick headed.

Patriot Games (1992)

As is the case with the Bond films, the relationship between Jason Bourne and Jack Ryan is key to truly understanding how each film franchise has influenced the spy thriller genre. Harrison Ford is Jack Ryan in Philip Noyceit is patriot games and brings the same all-man energy Damon does to Bourne. Ford’s Ryan isn’t the physical threat one would expect from a spy action movie, but that’s the point. Jack Ryan’s character is able to outwit and sometimes outwit the shadow government trying to bring him and his family down. The film is filled with talented and familiar actors like Samuel L. Jackson, Sean Bean and Anne Archer that help fill the screen with the authenticity needed for a film of this genre.

Ronin (1998)

One of the nice things about a movie like Ronin it’s the subtlety he brings to the genre. Written by David Mamet and featuring robert deniro and Jean Reno, the film focuses on identifying the characters in this cat-and-mouse game, allowing the plot to build naturally. When the web is fully revealed, it pays off to the viewer on a deeper level because of their connection to the characters. Ronin also features one of the most dynamically filmed car chases you’ll see on screen that heavily influenced the famous car chase scene from The Bourne Identity. What’s more, the realism of the car chase scene comes out so well because it was actually very real – with over 80 cars destroyed throughout the film and a Formula 1 race car driver brought in to do some stunts. waterfalls.

The Three Days of the Condor (1975)

When it comes to spy thrillers, nothing beats the original, Sydney Pollackit is Three days of the Condor featuring Robert Redford as CIA agent Joe Turner trying to figure out why all of his colleagues were murdered. The movie has everything a fan of the genre would want, and it effectively establishes the spy tropes we’re now so familiar with. Redford’s soothing, assured presence picks up on the film and its connection to Faye DunawayKathy is very reminiscent of the relationship between Bourne and Marie. In fact, the connection between the original Bourne and this 70s classic goes far beyond being in the same genre. The paranoia presented in the film about the role of government can be seen as a sign of its time, but the theme of government influence still resonates in 2022.


Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

When we think of a classic spy thriller, our minds don’t automatically jump to the world of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but the Russo Brothers foray into comic book movies transformed Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) from a man ready to do anything for his country to a man on the run. Evans has always played Rogers as someone who is too devoted to the truth, which makes him the perfect avatar for this spy adventure story, where Rogers doesn’t know who to trust. Ironically, in a world where identities are concealed through costume, it’s people without masks who pose Captain America’s greatest threat. The action sequences avoid the over-the-top explosiveness audiences would expect from a film of this scale, the fights stay on the ground – keeping the main character and the film as a whole right where they need to be to keep audiences engrossed. breath.