Matt Damon as Jason Bourne in The Bourne Identity

How To Watch Every ‘Bourne’ Movie in Order

Based on the novels by Robert Ludlum, the Bourne saga chronicles the hectic and dangerous life of former CIA assassin Jason Bourne (Matt Damon), who is discovered in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea with no memory of who he is or how he got there.

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Slowly, he begins to uncover the truth of his identity as well as the CIA’s shady black ops missions, fighting for his life wherever he goes—but not without putting other people in danger in the process. The talent behind these movies is serious, so if you’re looking for something to watch, why not watch the Bourne movies? Here’s how to watch them all in order.

The Bourne Identity (2002)

Matt Damon as Jason Bourne in The Bourne Identity
(Universal Pictures)

After being rescued by fishermen in the Mediterranean Sea and recovering from several gunshot wounds in his back, Jason Bourne begins to unravel the mystery of his identity when he discovers a safety deposit box in Zurich with a passport inside. He eventually recruits the help of Marie Kreutz (Franka Potente), but when the CIA’s Operation Treadstone is made aware of Bourne’s reappearance, they begin to hunt him down, and Bourne and Marie are forced to go on the run. The Bourne Identity was directed by Doug Liman and written by Tony Gilroy and William Blake Herron.

The Bourne Supremacy (2004)

Matt Damon as Jason Bourne looking through a rifle's scope in The Bourne Supremacy
(Universal Pictures)

Two years after the events of Identity, The Bourne Supremacy begins with Jason and Marie living in India, hiding from the CIA. But when Bourne is framed for the death of a Russian agent, his past life catches up to him once again. Though he’s still hindered by his amnesia, he finally manages to discover his real name: David Web. The Bourne Supremacy was directed by Paul Greengrass and written by Tony Gilroy.

The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)

Matt Damon as Jason Bourne holding and pointing a gun in The Bourne Ultimatum
(Universal Pictures)

Six weeks after the events of Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum sees Bourne being hunted down by Operation Blackbriar, an upgraded version of Operation Treadstone. A journalist begins to uncover the truth of the CIA’s covert operations, and Bourne helps him evade the inevitable—but only for a short while. As the CIA becomes more desperate to cover up its illegal activity, the stakes become even higher for Bourne. Still, in the end, he manages to expose Treadstone and Blackbriar to the world. The Bourne Supremacy was directed by Paul Greengrass and written by Tony Gilroy, Scott Z. Burns, and George Nolfi.

The Bourne Legacy (2012)

Jeremy Renner as Aaron Cross in The Bourne Legacy
(Universal Pictures)

No, your eyes are not deceiving you—that is Jeremy Renner instead of Matt Damon. The Bourne Legacy is the only movie in the Bourne saga not to star Matt Damon. Though most of the movie takes place around the same time as Ultimatum, Legacy takes the story one step further. With Operations Treadstone and Blackbriar leaked, the CIA is taking no chances. Renner plays Aaron Cross, an agent of Operation Outcome, another secret CIA program. The agency has decided that Cross has become expendable, just as Bourne was, and tracks him down across the U.S. The Bourne Legacy was directed by Tony Gilroy, who wrote the script along with Dan Gilroy.

Jason Bourne (2016)

Matt Damon as Jason Bourne in Jason Bourne (2016)
(Universal Pictures)

Ten years after the events of Ultimatum, Bourne has regained most of his memories and makes a living as a streetfighter in Greece, but his ordeal isn’t over yet. Jason Bourne reveals more of the secrets surrounding Operation Treadstone, Bourne’s recruitment, and his father’s role in the program, while a new CIA director (Tommy Lee Jones) is determined to hunt him down once and for all. Jason Bourne was directed by Paul Greengrass, who penned the script along with Christopher Rouse.

(featured image: Universal Pictures)

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El Kuiper
El (she/her) is The Mary Sue's U.K. editor and has been working as a freelance entertainment journalist for over two years, ever since she completed her Ph.D. in Creative Writing. El's primary focus is television and movie coverage for The Mary Sue, including British TV (she's seen every episode of Midsomer Murders ever made) and franchises like Marvel and Pokémon. As much as she enjoys analyzing other people's stories, her biggest dream is to one day publish an original fantasy novel of her own.