Don't Judge a Book by it's Cover: Political Importance of Spy-Thrillers

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The Bourne Identity and A Spy by Nature use betrayal of the main character as a manner to express the dominance of government spy agencies in the modern era. Doug Limon’s 2002 film The Bourne Identity, the importance of political power drives the CIA’s betrayal of Jason Bourne, who’s loyalty is blurred by amnesia. Similarly, in Charles Cumming’s 2001 novel A Spy by Nature, the MI5 betray and manipulate the egotistical protagonist, Alec Milius. The sacrificing of both agents demonstrates the free nature and ruthlessness of government espionage agencies in a contemporary world. The Bourne Identity and A Spy by Nature have some similarities but depict betrayal and loyalty in opposite fashions. Alec Milius and Jason Bourne both work for government spy agencies that use betrayal as punishment for failed missions. The Bourne Identity presents a talented agent in Bourne; he is so blurred by amnesia he doesn’t know who or what is betraying him. The scene in Nice highlights his skillful yet gentle nature. Jason Bourne realizes that an assassin is watching him, Marie, and her family friends. Being a superhero, Bourne finds the hidden family shotgun, improvises an explosive, and dodges bullets as he bolts through the woods towards the firing assassin. Naturally, Bourne wins the gun-blazing showdown and discovers project Treadstone, a secret operation trying to kill him which he was once a part of. This scene illustrates his talent as a spy and his amiable personality. The scene casts Bourne as a hero, outwitting an assassin to save people he has known for less than two days. His bravery also portrays the CIA in a negative light, as it is ruthless to hunt such a likeable character. In contrast to the film, A Spy by Nature depicts a less en... ... middle of paper ... ...urne Identity and A Spy by Nature reveals the scary authority that government spy agencies possess. The styles of betrayal illustrate the dominance and technological tools that spy agencies have post 9/11. The Bourne Identity hints at the malevolence of the super powerful CIA that has existed since the war on terror begun. However, Matt Damon’s admirable portrayal of Jason Bourne illustrates that the good guy can win in the dark times of terrorism. A Spy by Nature describes the heart-wrenching struggle of a not so talented egomaniac who thinks he is the perfect spy. The betrayal Alec faces is self-inflected, and preaches that humility is an important characteristic. The Bourne Identity and A Spy by Nature encapsulate the ever-increasing dominance of government spy agencies such as the CIA and MI5, and warn how personal rights are key in an ever-changing modern world.

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