James Bond. You can’t possibly be a fan of the spy genre and not be familiar with that recognisable moniker. Alongside other well-known espionage film series like James Bond and Mission Impossible, Bourne is a pop culture phenomenon. The Bourne franchise stands out from its peers because it has stayed true to delivering genuine action in the form of real stunt work at a time when action films have become more dependent on CGI.
Based on a spy thriller character created by Robert Ludlum, Jason Bourne elevated Matt Damon to the status of an action star and made him the face of the Bourne series. The Bourne Identity (2002), The Bourne Supremacy (2004), The Bourne Ultimatum (2007), and Jason Bourne were four of the three Ludlum films in which Damon starred (2016). The Bourne Legacy (2012), which was set in the same universe as Ludlum’s novels but was influenced by the novel of the same name authored by Eric Van Lustbader, replaced Damon’s Borune as the main character with Jeremy Renner’s Aaron Cross.
The 1988 miniseries The Bourne Identity, in which Richard Chamberlain played the title role, and the 2019 television series Treadstone, which expanded the Jason Bourne universe in a well-known setting and delved further into the Bourne mythos. Although Frank Marshall wants a sixth movie in the series, there have been discussions about it. However, the future remains uncertain at this time.
It’s true that the Bourne franchise’s last two entries seem to have had less of an impact than more current Bond and Mission Impossible movies. However, you have to admit that Jason Bourne is a name that evokes a sense of awe and mystery, regardless of whether you are a spy literature enthusiast eager to explore the films and TV shows or a die-hard fan wanting to return an alternate reality where a rogue agent decimates a corrupt CIA. So let’s get right into the world of Jason Bourne, first in the order of the movies’ and TV shows’ premiere dates, then in chronological order. You may then choose which order best suits you.
The Bourne franchise maintains a meticulous schedule, and the majority of the projects follow the order of their respective release dates. The first adaptation of Robert Ludlum’s Bourne novels was The Bourne Identity (1988). Despite some similarities to the 2002 movie of the same name, The Bourne Identity has its own plot and is unrelated to the other books in the series. You can get the most out of your binge-watch if you follow the following order, so it is up to you if you want to see the late 1980s version of Bourne or skip right to the major film series:
The Bourne Identity (1988) (miniseries)
The first Jason Bourne novel adaption was The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum. It was a one-off miniseries with two episodes and a total running time of three hours and five minutes. The Roger Young-directed movie, starring Richard Chamberlain as Jason Bourne, tells the tale of a strange man who was discovered injured and asleep on a French beach by some local fishermen. He is dumped at the local physician’s door, who treats him and restores him to health. The individual has no recollection of his former existence; the sole hint is the password for a secret Swiss bank account that was discovered implanted on his thigh. With the aid of the items he discovered in the bank locker and assuming the name “Jason Bourne,” which he discovers on his American passport, he embarks on a perilous trip to learn his identity. He soon understands that higher powers are involved and that someone wants to see him dead. There are some significant variations between this adaptation and Ludlum’s novels, including the fact that this one-shot miniseries is based on the first novel and ends there, but Ludlum’s plot continues in two additional books. A fantastic miniseries from the early 1990s spy thriller era, it is still a joy to watch.
The Bourne Identity (2002)
The Bourne franchise, one of the most prestigious and sophisticated espionage film franchises ever, rose to prominence in the early 2000s. The Bourne Identity was a game-changer in terms of its plot, action scenes, and cinematography that expertly reproduced the sense of mystery and perplexity that you felt when reading Ludlum’s novels. It was initially intended to be a trilogy. A young man with two gunshot wounds to his back is discovered by Italian fishermen close to a Mediterranean beach. He is severely hurt and unconscious. They tend to his injuries, but when he awakens, he has no memory of his previous life. Under the man’s hip, a hidden laser projector is discovered that displays codes for a safe deposit box in a Swiss bank. He is taken aback by his own unique skills, which he somehow still recalls as a reflex, including multilingualism and remarkable martial prowess. The Bourne Name puts spectators on the edge of their seats as the protagonist foils many attempts on his life and learns more about his background while assuming the identity of Jason Bourne, which he discovered on one of his bogus passports.
The Bourne Supremacy (2004)
In the second instalment of the Bourne trilogy, The Bourne Supremacy, the main figure is transformed into a more skilled assassin. After his girlfriend Marie is killed during an unsuccessful attempt on Bourne’s life, he embarks on a quest to exact retribution and later learns that he was the victim of a fabrication. The leader of the organisation that bestowed Jason Bourne with his amazing powers is the one who frames him for a theft he didn’t commit. The movie digs deeper into Bourne’s shadowy past while showcasing his quick thinking and riveting close-quarter fighting scenes. When the credits roll, the audience is left wanting more.
The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)
Jason Bourne has been living a normal life in seclusion after the events of The Bourne Supremacy, but inevitably, his history finds him. His situation worsens when a British journalist’s ostensibly harmless inquiry into Bourne’s past gets noticed by a brand-new, shadowy evil organisation. He is interested in learning more about exactly who or what is relentlessly hunting him and why they do so. Ultimatum, the concluding instalment of the trilogy and frequently cited as one of the best action thriller movies of the twenty-first century, brings Jason Bourne’s story to a satisfying conclusion while featuring a number of heart-pounding, life-or-death realistic stunts and a masterfully woven plot.
The Bourne Legacy (2012)
The Bourne Legacy attempted to rekindle interest in the Bourne franchise, albeit it was not as successful as its predecessors. The Bourne Legacy was based on the book of the same name by Eric Van Lustbader, while being set in a world established by Robert Ludlum, author of the original Bourne novels. Aaron Cross, played by Jeremy Renner, was given the starring role because Jason Bourne was still at large and his whereabouts were unknown. Another genetically improved super-spy used by the Department of Defense to conduct covert operations is Cross. But unlike Bourne, he is dependent on a particular class of drugs known as “chems,” and following the events of The Bourne Ultimatum, his life turns into a hellish nightmare. He will run out of chemicals without them since his previous bosses want him dead.
Jason Bourne (2016)
The beloved super-spy was back for one final assignment in the final Bourne movie (for now), which saw a return to the original plot. We get to learn more about Jason Bourne’s past thanks to Matt Damon reprising his part as well as a number of other well-known actors. The organisation that gave Bourne his extraordinary talents was founded by his father, who was slain because he opposed the idea of raising his son to be a cold-blooded killer, it is revealed. In addition to several masterfully choreographed close-combat and action sequences, Bourne’s latest revenge-driven campaign solves a brand-new mystery and will keep you on the edge of your seat right up until the very end.
Treadstone (2019) (series)
Treadstone succeeds the Bourne film series while also serving as a prelude to it. It examines two timelines: the 1970s, when the CIA sought to create super-soldiers known as “assets,” transform them into sleeper spies utilising gory methods, and the present day following Jason Bourne’s last abduction. Treadstone was meant to deepen the Jason Bourne universe by venturing beyond of Robert Ludlum’s books and connect into the sixth Bourne movie. However, the show was terminated after only one season, thus it seems unlikely that a movie will be made in the future. With action-packed fight scenes and answers to various questions that were left unanswered in the movies, the programme is nevertheless enjoyable to watch.
Being a binge-watcher himself, finding Content to write about comes naturally to Divesh. From Anime to Trending Netflix Series and Celebrity News, he covers every detail and always find the right sources for his research.