The Bourne Identity
Farfetched plotting nearly capsizes this globe-trotting thriller but director Doug Liman (Swingers, Go) certainly keeps the international intrigue and testosterone flowing at an entertaining clip. Matt Damon makes a compelling spy hero as Josh Bourne, an unconscious amnesiac who is plucked from the ocean by Italian fishermen. Josh has bullet wounds in his back and a tiny laser device implanted in his head that provides the number to a secret Swiss bank account. Once on land, he discovers he has the fighting capability of a well-oiled machine, dodges assassins and enlists the aid of a woman (Run Lola Run’s Franka Potente) to transport him to Paris. They both become targets of CIA killers in an adaptation of Robert Ludlum’s 1980 novel that has more ties to the espionage movies and black-and-white morality of yesteryear than reality. Chris Cooper, Brian Cox and Julia Stiles co-star.