I am a fan of the first Bourne movie. Particularly so since I didn't much care for the Robert Ludlum book and was able to watch the movie without bemoaning that the movie had exactly one blessed thing to do with said aforementioned book.
One of the reasons I did enjoy that movie were the fight scenes.
A good fight scene is every bit as beautiful as a dance. Matter-of-fact -- given the circumstances that Hollywood must necessarily work under -- a good fight scene is a dance between professional performers.
Plus, the techniques used during the movie were ones that I'm familiar with -- more-or-less. There's nothing quite like seeing the kali drill you've been working on done on the big-screen.
Then along came the third Bourne movie and it all just went to hell.
Somebody, somewhere in Hollywood has decided that movie fight scenes must be filmed by fourteen different cameras, each one only filming for three micro-seconds before switching to the next camera.
Plus, each camera must be moving past, or through, the action sequence at a dead sprint during that three micro-seconds -- and Steadicams are apparently passé, because every step and bobble is displayed in all its amplified glory on the screen.
Between the sudden view switching, the high-speed swooping and the constant waggle, wobble and jiggle of the screen -- I found the third Bourne film to be unwatchable.
One should not feel the need for Dramamine during a featured film you paid money for. Mal de mer belongs out on the open sea -- not in a $8.00 theatre seat.
I bring this up because my brother took me to see Quantum of Solace this afternoon -- and it suffers from a terminal case of The Bourne Syndrome.
Not only were the fight-scenes filmed in high-speed, multiple angle, diving, zooming snips, but so were the car chases, the boat chases and the foot chases.
I suppose this is supposed to add ... something ... to the cinematic experience, but if so, it is lost in the feelings of nausea, visual confusion and the sodding headache that it give me.
Unless, of course, sea-sickness is the effect the director was going for -- in which case, Bravo, old chap! Well done, indeed.
Fight scenes are intricate, beautiful choreography. It would kind of be nice to be able -- you know -- SEE IT. Particularly when somebody ponies up some hard-earned dosh to see it.
Daniel Craig is becoming my favourite Bond, but if someone doesn't find a Steadicam for the next movie and lay-off the bloody camera-on-a-bungee-cord filming style, I'll probably not watch the next one.
The headache simply isn't worth it.