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The Boyle Ultimatum

Okay, I freely admit that I love action films. Die Hard. The Terminator. Bond anything. Indiana Jones. And the Bourne flicks. Give me a good action film, and I’m right there, popcorn mixed with Raisinets in hand, happy as a clam as I clutch at my husband when I get scared and peer through my fingers when it gets really tense. But what gets my theater ticket in a knot is when an action flick implies a romance but never follows through. Boo. Hiss.

Note to self: Never date an action film director. Obviously these are the sort of guys who promise to call the next day . . . and never do.

I am in angst over all this because we went to see The Bourne Ultimatum last weekend. Now, I’m not a huge fan of the choppy, fast paced editing that they’ve done with these films, but I like Matt Damon as Jason Bourne. I’ll put up with the headache 2 hours of jiggling scene shots gives me for some great action. If you haven’t see it yet, read no further as there is some spoilers contained below. Thus warned, I continue.

Let us take the case of Jason Bourne. You see I always knew there was more to whole Nicky Parsons, sweet little CIA operative and Jason Bourne. Turns out there was. But of course, to our can’t-have-a-camera-cut-last-more-than-3-seconds director, such a relationship might mean character development of actually having breakfast with her. In public. And maybe even holding hands. Can you see the action boys in Hollywood all standing on their chairs saying “Ewwww!” Instead, their quite possibly torrid love affair is now all in Jason’s past, a past he can’t remember. If I’d been Nicky, I think I would have tried a little harder to help him remember. If you know what I mean.

So to combat this horrible injustice to romance, I have come up with the following. What I like to call, The Boyle Ultimatum.

  1. No Hollywood action film script with any sort of romantic story thread–implied or full frontal–can be produced without the express review and revisions by an authorized romance writer. Say like me.
  2. Romances must have some sort of happy ending. Some sort of inkling and hope that Action Stud A will find and carry off Babe 2 to some safe tropical local where they can make torrid love for the next, say, 60 seconds. At least through the credits. Hey, it might even get people something worth sitting through the credits.
  3. Just because he loved and lost The One doesn’t mean he can’t fall in love again. Because, come on, when you’re Babe A with one of these guys, you know your days are numbered–much better to be Babe B. Another point in Babe B’s favor, she usually gets cast in the sequels as well. Besides, where Babe A was just loving and pretty, Babe B is usually full of smarts, moxie, and a Babe as well. I mean this is the girl who can not only hot wire your next stolen car for you, but hack into the CIA’s most secretative databases. I mean this is a girl worth keeping around. Not just shipping off on a bus to parts unknown when you know she’s now assassin bait #2. All because she decided to help your sorry ass when everyone else wanted you singing with the choir invisible. We romance authors love the second time around romance. You write your impossible car chase scenes, or why a top level CIA agent would be stupid enough to NOT know his passport has a tracking chip in it, and leave lost love found to the experts.

But if no one is willing to listen to the Boyle Ultimatum, can we at least have one more Bourne movie? So Nicky/Julia Stiles can finally get something more out of this series than a lot shots of her looking seriously neglected?

11 comments to “The Boyle Ultimatum”

  1. Karen H in NC
    August 10th, 2007 at 6:09 am · Link

    Haven’t seen this latest Bourne flick yet, but I will soon as it’s out on DVD. Anyway, this is the main reason I so love every Bond film ever made….Bond wouldn’t be Bond if he didn’t always gets his woman…be she bad or good! Gotta love it!

    And I don’t know why some of these action directors can’t take more cues from the Indy films. Case in point: the scene on the boat between Indy & Marion in Raiders. Nothing like a dame dressed in a slinky satin nightgown and a guy with lots of hurts that need kissing.

  2. Gillian
    August 10th, 2007 at 7:50 am · Link

    Karen you are so right. That scene is one of my all time favorites. And that is why I loved Casino Royale so much, even though I knew something dreadful would happen at the end; it was a well done romance.

  3. Helen
    August 10th, 2007 at 3:57 pm · Link

    I have seen the first one of the series and I did enjoy it we have the second one on DVD but as yet have not watched it so I will probably watch it soon so as when the third one comes out on DVD I can watch that as well. I don’t watch a lot of TV or DVD’s because I always have my head stuck in a book my faourite pastime.
    Have Fun

  4. KeiraSoleore
    August 10th, 2007 at 6:39 pm · Link

    Just reading the title had me laughing hard, and I have to admit I skimmed over the first part of the blog to get down to the good part where you lay it all out. Imagine what a lucrative career romance writers would have if everyone hired them on as consultants whenever anything romance-related was needed. The world would be your oyster… ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Janet
    August 10th, 2007 at 7:57 pm · Link

    LOL! I love your observations, Elizabeth. I have to say I REALLY dislike the “choppy, fast-paced editing” where you can almost tell exactly what’s going on. And the ONLY question my husband and I had about the whole movie concerned Bourne and Nicky and her reactions in the first and second movies. End result was really unsatisfying in the romance arena. If Hollywood is voting about doing things your way, you get my vote. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Haven Rich
    August 11th, 2007 at 7:05 am · Link

    I so hear you on this! I’ve seen the first two and kept waiting, hoping that something more would happen. They don’t have to have the wedding or Cinderella moment, but geez, can’t they at least show something close to a HEA?

    I think this is why I like movies like Zorro..full of action, but you know there is a romance going on AND they get a HEA.

  7. Isabel
    August 12th, 2007 at 1:19 pm · Link

    Elizbo, I skipped the spoiler parts because I’ve yet to see the film and like you I’m a huge fan of Matt as Jason. The DH says Nicky and Jason finally get together in this one…

  8. seton
    August 12th, 2007 at 3:18 pm · Link

    I thought it was kinda creepy the way Julia Stiles looked like the chick in the first Bourne film at the end. Obviously a deliberate choice on the filmmakers’ part. I dont think there is a future for Nicky and Bourne. (Which is good to my mind because i find Julia Stiles bland as an actress.)

  9. Haven Rich
    August 13th, 2007 at 2:04 am · Link

    I haven’t seen the movie yet but really open for spoilers, which leads me to a question. Do they leave the ending open for a possible 4th movie?

  10. Elizabeth
    August 14th, 2007 at 1:57 pm · Link

    I really like Julia Stiles–I just wish film makers would do more with her–she strikes me as very intelligent, which is a trait sadly lacking in Hollywood of late — and again probably intimidating to film makers.

    And, yeah, I think there will be a fourth outing. Hello, it’s already made a boat load of money, isn’t that the only prerequisite for a making another one?

  11. eleanor
    August 17th, 2007 at 1:01 pm · Link

    ohohoh…I want to see it! just need to find a babysitter…

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