×

Latest Movie News Headlines

Face-Off: The Mission: Impossible Series vs. The Bourne Series

06.01.2015by: Brian Bitner
With SPY hitting theaters this weekend, we thought it might be fun to take a look at two of the biggest spy film franchises to emerge in the past twenty years. Both are four films in with a fifth in the works and have certainly had their ups and downs along the way. Mission: Impossible took a decade to finally find its footing, while the Bourne series started strong but took a step back when it moved on without its usual lead. So, whether you prefer suave agents wielding gadgets and one-liners or amnesiac ninjas on the lam, let's take a look at which series has had the best run so far.
CAST
Matt Damon, Franka Potente, Chris Cooper, Brian Cox, Clive Owen, Julia Stiles, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Joan Allen, Karl Urban, Gabriel Mann, Marton Csokas, Michelle Monaghan, David Strathairn, Scott Glenn, Paddy Considine, Édgar Ramírez, Rachel Weisz, Stacy Keach, Albert Finney, Edward Norton, Corey Johnson, Oscar Isaac


...and Jeremy Renner as "The New Guy"


Two impressive lists, to be sure, but the characters in the Bourne series have a bit more weight and longevity, allowing for a more well-used cast, while the Mission: Impossible series features a lot of one-offs and glorified cameos. Did you remember Emilio Estevez was in the first one for like a second?!
FIRST FILM

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE

A slow film with some solid sequences. The vault break-in is maybe the most impressive scene from any movie here. Once Ethan Hunt explodes off a helicopter onto a train, though...

THE BOURNE IDENTITY

A solid start to the series which plays like an art film with fighting- and actually works. Jason Bourne riding a guy through the air and shooting an enemy on the way down is no chopper/train explosion, but it's still an unfortunate finale to an otherwise great film.
SECOND FILM

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2

Oh, boy. The one that would go down in the how-not-to-make-a-movie hall of fame. Unlike the first Bourne film, this one tries to double as an action movie and an art film and fails miserably at both. Slow motion flip kicks, doves around every corner... yeah, it's just... yeah.

THE BOURNE SUPREMACY

The film that would cement the look and feel of the series. What Doug Liman started, Paul Greengrass continued with flying colors. Just a rock solid film.
THIRD FILM

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 3

J.J. Abrams saves the day! Six years after everyone assumed the series was dead and gone, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 3 comes along and brings the franchise into the current generation of filmmaking. Tom Cruise and Philip Seymour Hoffman deliver performances beyond the expectations of a popcorn movie.

THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM

Arguably the best installment in the series. The camera gets a bit too Greengrassy at times, but that's a tiny gripe. Even if Damon and Greengrass do indeed return to the franchise, this will mark a very satisfying end to the original trilogy.
FOURTH FILM

MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL

An insanely watchable film. Not as gritty and emotional as the previous installment, but still light years ahead of the first two. The action teeters on the edge of being ridiculous, but Brad Bird walks the line expertly and delivers probably the most fun film of the eight being discussed here.

THE BOURNE LEGACY

Not a terrible movie, not a great movie. The returning cast members kept it feeling relevant to the series, but introducing chems as the source of the operatives' abilities is midi-chlorians all over again.
LIFETIME GROSS
$2.1 billion worldwide
$1.2 billion worldwide
JUST FOR FUN

The Bourne Series
Given how dated the first film feels and how much of a hot mess the second one is, it's impressive that the Mission: Impossible series has come back so strongly. The Bourne series has maintained a fairly consistent caliber of quality, though, and therefore feels like less of a live wire. THE BOURNE LEGACY may have been a disappointment, but it's no MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2.

Whichever way you lean, we haven't seen the last of IMF or Treadstone. MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: ROGUE NATION hits theaters July 31, 2015, and TWO Bourne sequels are on the way, with Justin Lin directing Jeremy Renner (as Aaron Cross) in BOURNE YESTERDAY and Paul Greengrass helming BOURNE AGAIN with Matt Damon. No, those aren't the actual titles. Those are terrible. We don't know much yet. Stay tuned.

Agree? Disagree? Which do you prefer?
POST YOUR CHOICE BELOW!

If you have a suggestion for a future Face-Off, let us know below or send me an email at [email protected].

RECOMMENDED MOVIE NEWS

RECOMMENDED MOVIE NEWS

Latest Entertainment News Headlines


Top
Loading...

Featured Youtube Videos

Views and Counting