"There was never just one," teases the newly released trailer for The Bourne Legacy, the latest installment in the blockbuster film franchise. (Watch the clip below.) In this fourth Bourne film (hitting theaters August 3), Hurt Locker star Jeremy Renner (Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol) plays Aaron Cross, a new agent giving himself over to a super-secret spy program. Renner, Hollywood's latest go-to action star, is stepping in for Matt Damon, who, as titular character Jason Bourne, helped the franchise's first three films rake in more than $1 billion worldwide. Will Renner be able to fill Damon's shoes?
It sure looks like it: At least the producers are acknowledging the inevitable comparisons between Renner and Damon, says Sean O'Neal at The A.V. Club. Right off the bat, the trailer includes the voiceover, "Jason Bourne was just the tip of the iceberg." And Renner "seems perfectly at ease" and "characteristically grim-faced and tormented" as a man who surrenders his identity to the mysterious and dangerous spy program. Bonus: He gets to play off the talented Edward Norton as the film's villain. Assuming fans can move past their "Where's Damon?" sentiments, Renner should acquit himself just fine.
"The Bourne Legacy"
The jury's still out: At least in this trailer, Renner's being overshadowed by Jason Bourne, says Katey Rich at Cinema Blend. The entire first half of the teaser focuses on the Bourne mythology, offering only obscured glimpses of Renner, who barely speaks during the subsequent scattershot montage of action scenes. Producers don't "actually emphasize Renner himself" — just the "franchise they're trying to continue."
"The Bourne Legacy trailer: Jason Bourne was just the tip of the iceberg"
Forget Renner. The film looks great: This trailer convinced me that the franchise can survive without Damon, says Jason Serafino at Complex. But it's not necessarily because of Renner. Instead, the trailer's mix of "quick cuts, bone-shattering blows, and some shadowy government agents" combines the best elements of the original trilogy, and certainly lives up to the Bourne brand. The Bourne Legacy "won't be just another vapid sequel" whose only purpose is "making a quick buck."
"Trailer park: The Bourne Legacy looks like a worthy successor to what Matt Damon started"
Judge for yourself: