Matt Damon Shines in Bourne Supremacy as Halle Berry Suffers a Cat-astrophe

Now in theaters: Catwoman and The Bourne Supremacy.

Catwoman

Halle Berry is a fine actress. Not only did she win an Oscar, she deserved to win an Oscar. But this movie asks her to do something not even she can do: Play someone who can't get a date. Hollywood, are you nuts?

This project — years in the making — somehow ended up in the hands of a special effects director who has never directed a feature. And he doesn't have a clue.

Movies aren't about special effects. They are about stories, and this film doesn't have one.

At a price tag of nearly $100 million, Catwoman is an extravagant setup for a series of sequels. But Hollywood forgot something: You need a good first film so audiences will want a sequel.

The film starts with Halle floating and a voiceover where she says something about how she died. That's how Billy Wilder started Sunset Boulevard.

Ten minutes later we see her die. A tidal wave of water knocks her dead. That's out of the Tommy Lee Jones version of The Fugitive, but the film is so incompetently made I'm not sure the director was aware of the thefts.

The climactic catfight with Sharon Stone took nine days to film. But it's edited so incompetently that it's almost impossible to tell the two women were in the same room at the same time.

The best effect? Halle Berry's pupils morph into cat eyes. The best part of the film? It's just 90 minutes long. The perfect length for a cat nap.

Halle, next time work with a real director. Cats may have nine lives. Movie stars don't. Grade: D

Bourne Supremacy

In his second turn as the hero from the Robert Ludlum spy novels, Matt Damon comes in from the cold and enters the cool. The Bourne Supremacy is a dynamite paranoid thriller. Damon knows he was once part of a supersecret CIA kill squad but he doesn't know who is trying to kill him and, for the best part of the film we share the paranoia, because neither do we.

A spy flick for this century: No tux. No martini, shaken or stirred. No romance. He takes us to India, Berlin, and Moscow, not for the glamour, but for the grunge.

Opening the same day as Catwoman, which was supposed to set up a franchise, Jason Bourne will reign supreme. I can't wait for Jason Bourne Vol 3. Grade: B+

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