Critic Reviews

68

Metascore

Based on 38 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
88
Blisteringly fast, Bourne also has a strong or striking supporting actor around every corner: Chris Cooper, Brian Cox, Julia Stiles and Clive Owen in roles that range from meaty to amazingly small.
88
Charlotte Observer
One of those rare thrillers where the cops aren't fools, villains don't turn stupid at crucial moments, and career assassins seldom miss targets.
80
This is an entertainment that really entertains because any number of interesting and unexpected choices were made, starting with the selection of Doug Liman as the director.
80
Wall Street Journal
The outcome is distinctive and entertaining. There's no way you'd mistake this for James Bond, and no reason you would want to.
75
Chicago Sun-Times
A skillful action movie about a plot that exists only to support a skillful action movie. The entire story is a set-up for the martial arts and chases. Because they are done well, because the movie is well-crafted and acted, we give it a pass. Too bad it's not about something.
75
The result is not only entertaining but also refreshing, a shameless crowd-pleaser with a healthy cynicism about itself.
75
Philadelphia Inquirer
Damon, starring in his first full-fledged action pic, brings a determined bearing and believability to the proceedings.
75
New York Daily News
Thrillers have become so gnawingly generic that The Bourne Identity wakes the senses without leaning on cliché and soundtrack.
75
Liman packs enough firepower into The Bourne Identity to please the summer action fan, including a reshot climax that contains one of the niftier stunts I've seen recently. The centerpiece action sequence is a bravura car chase through Paris, yet the moments that bookend it are equally impressive.
75
ReelViews
Nicely paced and fits the bill for those in search of two hours of spy-based action and martial arts. The movie has credibility issues, but none are insurmountable in the name of entertainment.
70
Rolling Stone
Director Doug Liman -- the hip skipper of "Swingers" and "Go" -- makes all the familiar dirty business seem fun and almost human. In these dog days, Bourne earns what passes as high praise: It doesn't suck.
58
Entertainment Weekly
It has a few whispers of intrigue, but at the heart of The Bourne Identity lies a dispiriting paradox: The more that Jason Bourne learns about himself, the less arresting he seems.

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