The 81 Master Tricks and Tools of Jason Bourne

Jason Bourne. The ultimate man. The trained assassin who has an arsenal of strength, tricks and gadgets to complete his missions. This article aims to dissect the original Jason Bourne film trilogy, and the later two films, so that you can soak up as much information on Jason Bourne as possible.


  • In the Identity, the watch Bourne wears throughout the trilogy is a TAG Heuer’s LINK Chronograph.
  • In the Supremacy, Bourne uses a Rotring 600 pen.
  • When trying to temporary restrain another agent, Bourne hands him a zip tie to use as handcuffs and put them on his wrists in the front and cinch them using his teeth.
  • In the Ultimatum, Bourne uses a monocular, which is basically half of a binocular, and is more compact and subtle.
  • In the Legacy, after emerging from frigid water, Cross uses an emergency survival blanket.
  • In Jason Bourne, Bourne uses a lockpick set to enter an electrical control room.
  • In Jason Bourne, he uses a GPS tracker. We recommend a Tile, which is light and barely noticeable.

The Bourne Identity

The Tools

The Tricks

  • When Bourne is on the ship, recovering from his loss of memory, he continues to work out, doing pull-ups, etc. The lesson here is to always stay in shape.
  • After Bourne assaults two police officers, he ditches his coat to remove potential identifiers.
  • Bourne uses lockers provided by train and bus terminals to stash bags filled with money, weapons and identities he can use. This idea of creating caches was also detailed in Emergency by Neil Strauss.
  • Bourne fights using a type of martial arts that is a combination of Filpino Kali and Jeet Kune Do.
  • Bourne has a tiny laser projector in his hip that contains his bank account number.
  • When going removing items from his safe deposit box, he takes everything except the gun. While some may discount this as a stupid move, I consider it a smart one. Sometimes, carrying a gun with you can draw more attention and/or bring trouble.
  • Updated: When spotted by foreign police, he quickly enters the U.S. embassy, a place where the foreign police have no jurisdiction. If you are in a foreign country and are being chased by police, entering the embassy of your country might fend them off for a couple minutes. (Thanks Mosh!)
  • When attempting to escape from the embassy, he grabs an emergency map from the wall, then knocks out a soldier and removes his communications device, so that he can hear where the soldiers are.
  • Bourne pays a girl $20,000 to drive him to Paris. While I don’t recommend this (most would get suspicious and alert the authorities), the tip here is that you can almost always use large sums of money to get what you need. Simple, right? (We also see this later in the film, when Bourne bribes a morgue worker to see a body.)
  • The re-dial button on the phone is your best friend. You can use this on landlines without call logs, or if the phone does have a call log, you can use that as well. The point here is to retrace steps and discover agendas. (i.e. redials to the airport, taxi service, hotel, etc.) In the film, Bourne uses the re-dial button to discover another lead on his identity.
  • Bourne is an expert of fighting based on his surroundings. In a high action fight in his apartment, he reaches around for a makeshift weapon, settling on a ballpoint pen, which he uses to stab the assassin with. Use your surroundings!
  • During a high speed car chase, Bourne instructs his companion to look away from the police. This is most likely to avoid the confirmation of who is in the car. Your instincts are usually to constantly look around, but that’s more likely to burn you.
  • When Bourne ditches Marie’s car, he makes sure to wipe down everything. Later, it is proven a smart move when a police officer says something like, “You’ve been here for 3 hours and you still can’t find a fingerprint!?!”. Create dead ends for your followers, and leave no traces of yourself.
  • The check in, or list of visitors is a great source for information. At a morgue, Bourne rips out several sheets to examine later for links to the person who took a body.
  • In one scene, Bourne is placing duct tape over a car window. While he may be mending the broken window, this may also be just to block the view in, or it might be to prevent gun shots from shattering the windows.
  • Updated: In a fight with another assassin, Bourne uses a shotgun to blow up a gas tank, creating a large smoke screen for cover. If you are in need of a distraction, or a screen, blowing something up (at a distance) might be a good idea. (Thanks Nick!)
  • When instructing a friend to lay low he says, “No friends, nothing familiar.” This basically sums up what you should do if you want to ditch your identity.
  • Bourne attaches a tracking device to a vehicle he suspects after luring agents to his specified location.
  • This mention definitely deserves its own “don’t try this at home”. Several flights up, Bourne needs to get down the stairs fast. Grabbing the nearest dead guy, he jumps, positioning the cadaver below, and landing hard. Using a corpse to cushion your fall may not be the closest thing in your situation, but you could use something similar. (You might be asking what would be similar to a dead body, so here are a few suggestions: mattress, inflatable life raft, etc.)


A video on how to fight like Jason Bourne.

How to Kick Someone’s Ass With Everyday Objects

Watch The Bourne Identity

The Bourne Supremacy

The Tools

  • After overpowering two officials, Bourne copies the SIM card of the agent who received a call from the CIA, using a gadget he can then use to listen in on the calls. Here is some more information on the process: the how-to and the gadget. When doing this, he uses a product from CHIPDRIVE and a GSM plugin SIM adapter. The prop used for this can be found here.
  • Bourne uses a Rotring 600 pen.
  • Bourne uses a Siemens ME45 phone.
  • Bourne uses a Sig Sauer PRO gun in Moscow.
  • In all of the movies, when Bourne uses a cell phone, he uses a hands-free accessory to talk. A Bluetooth headset is much more discrete but its signal can be intercepted more easily.

The Tricks

  • Bourne, when detained and questioned, says nothing, assuming a sort of poker face. Some may say the law is on his side, and this is a smart move for Bourne. Others may think this is stupid. At any rate, Bourne accomplishes what he set out to do.
  • Bourne then steals a car for transportation. This is highly illegal, so please read our legal section before learning more. This and this could help.
  • When trying to temporary restrain another agent, Bourne hands him a zip tie to use as handcuffs and put them on his wrists in the front and cinch them using his teeth.
  • In fighting another agent, Bourne again relies on his surroundings to use a rolled up magazine as a weapon. The type of fighting he uses is called Escrima, an old Philippine martial art. In ancient times, it used sticks, but now you can use everyday objects, such as a rolled up paper or a pen.
  • In order to kill someone Bourne uses an electrical cord to strangle him. When fighting, be sure to stay away from cords that might be used to strangle you.
  • After realizing that backup has been called in, Bourne places a magazine inside a toaster, starts toasting it, then breaks open a gas line to create a makeshift bomb. In minutes, when agents are about to enter the house, it blows up, leaving Bourne a nice exit.
  • Bourne affixes a fake license plate he got from his bag to a car he stole to prevent police from finding him quickly.
  • When setting up a meeting place, Bourne always picks the best possible location. In a particular scene, he chooses a location which is set to be the location of a protest march. This makes it difficult for surveillance, and using the protest as a cover, he manages to carry out his mission. When he then realizes that his target is wearing a wire, he brings her into a room on the subway system to block the wire from broadcasting more. You can use this knowledge to perform similar feats if necessary.
  • Bourne uses a prepaid phone card at a phone booth for security and privacy to prevent tracing.
  • When looking for a target he thinks is staying in the city, he calls the major hotels in the city, looking to speak to her.
  • Bourne asks the front desk to call a room (that he knows is already on the phone) so that he can see the room number displayed on the phone.
  • Bourne uses vodka to disarm one cop in Russia by throwing it in the man’s face. He also uses the same bottle to disinfect a gun shot wound, something I don’t recommend for even a paper cut. Alcohol works as a disinfect in a pinch, but it can also damage your wounds.


Watch The Bourne Supremacy

How to Be Jason Bourne: Multiple Passports, Swiss Banking, and Crossing Borders

The Bourne Ultimatum

The Tools

  1. In the film, Bourne uses a monocular, which is basically half of a binocular, and is more compact and subtle. 
  2. Bourne uses a Dual Tone SIG Pro SP2022 in the beginning of the film, and other than the other guns he removes from agents and officers, he uses another SIG Pro.
  3. Bourne buys a pre-paid phone at Waterloo Station, then activates it and drops it in his target’s pocket. This is done to make sure that other agents can’t listen in on the call.

The Tricks

  • In a car, drowning in water, Bourne gets a good breath of air by swimming to the roof where an air pocket formed.
  • Bourne begins to start his new life, grabbing what he had hidden around the house. He hides his passports behind a photo frame and money behind his desk drawer.
  • When calling a journalist who is under agency surveillance, Bourne calls a co-worker who then lets the journalist use her phone. This is done so that the CIA can’t listen to the call (they only have his work and cell lines tapped.)
  • Bourne instructs the journalist to do several things to prevent agents from getting to him. The first is to let the agents target someone else, in this case, a unknown man in a hoodie. Bourne instructs the journalist, Ross, to approach the man, and turn around, to turn suspicion to the man in the hoodie.
  • Next, Bourne instructs him to move into the station as soon as a bus comes, to block the cameras from following him.
  • Bourne has Ross tie his shoe for several minutes, to shake the team of agents trying to track him down.
  • Bourne coaches Ross on how to stay out of the CCTV’s scanning, by keeping on a path that would not be picked up by the camera.
  • When ever usually-moving security cameras stop moving, it usually means that they are off, and when they are suddenly turned off, it usually means that another power is about to do something they don’t want on camera.
  • In order to turn attention towards a specific door, Bourne takes a flashlight, some tape and a fan, and attaches the shining light to the fan, to create the illusion of someone pacing under a door.
  • Knowing that agents on the other side will be arriving shortly, and needing to buy some time, Bourne calls the cops, telling about Americans who are shooting, then fires several times to get others to call in, then leaves. When the agents arrive a minute later, they get detained by police.
  • In Tangiers, Bourne is traveling over roofs, evading police. In order to out run the police, he grabs some clothing off of a clothing line, and wraps it around his hands in order to get over glass covered walls.
  • In order to obtain the voice of a safe’s owner to open a voice activated safe, he calls him, recording him say his name.
  • This, per se, is not so much a Bourne trick as a method used by an ex-agent, who completely dismantles her cellphone so that the agency can not track her down via cellular triangulation. Even when your phone is off, it can still send signals if hacked. In addition, (as FYI in the comments pointed out), she also uses it to indicate to Bourne where she went, like breadcrumbs.
  • Bourne improvises another everyday as a weapon in a fight scene: a hardcover book, which he uses to brutally smash a guy’s head with. In the same part of the film, he also uses a towel as another improvised weapon.


The actor behind Desh shows how they filmed some of the stunts and gives an interview.

James Bond vs Jason Bourne

Watch The Bourne Ultimatum

The Bourne Legacy

The Tools

The Tricks

  • Cross’ wilderness fire is built with logs upright, presumably to protect the fire from being blown out by wind.
  • To keep wolves at bay, Cross uses a lit torch of fire.
  • He splits up with his partner when he has a bad feeling.
  • To prevent tracking signals from being sent, Cross uses a metal and foil tin to act as a sort of faraday cage.
  • Knowing that his tracking device detects body heat, he puts it in a wolf to replicate the heat signature.
  • A fire extinguisher is as a makeshift gun/propulsion device.
  • A saw is used as a sound distraction device.
  • Cross uses a disposable camera to de-magnetize digital passport chips. Normal people shouldn’t need to do this, but you can use an RFID blocking passport envelope.
  • There’s an old con artist lesson that’s used in the film: act confident, act like you belong and people will believe you belong there too.
  • By forcing an emergency shutdown, Cross helps provide cover for his escape.
  • Aaron Cross, just like Jason Bourne, speaks a ton of languages. Duolingo can help you master many.

Watch The Bourne Legacy

Jason Bourne

The Tools

The Tricks

  • Meeting in the middle of a protest, seeking out the chaos, makes it more difficult to be tracked.
  • A bandaid kit tin is used to contain a USB drive.
  • Catching an attacker off guard, Bourne slams the door open.
  • Bourne uses the train system to avoid being tracked through plane travel.
  • Setting off multiple fire alarms to cause a distraction is straight out of the Bourne playbook.
  • When finding an assassin, Bourne points a spotlight to temporarily blind him.

Watch Jason Bourne

What tricks and tools do remember? What did you like about the Bourne trilogy? Let us know in the comments!

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Sources for this article included Wikipedia, IMDB, this article, and watching the films more times than I care to say.

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  1. Jason Bourne does not use a bluetooth handheld device because its wireless waves can be intercepted and can give the exact location of the person. Wired communication from cell phone to ear phone cannot be intercepted remotely

  2. What you don’t know can’t hurt you..!!!!!!! It hurts you alright, only you feel less of it, as it is unexpected. Remember the more you know the more flexible you are. If you want to be like jason Bourne, go to performing arts school and study acting. The real stuff is scary,….. half your friends and make all your foes your new friends … and your still no where near where a spy would be. Normal people who do extraordinary jobs,….credit to the agents who look after us without ever knowing who, what, when, where or why

  3. jason steals car in bourne supremacy but didn’t explain how his little device beeped the car or how was able to start. yes stealin is wrong but am curious how this was accomplished

  4. for number 10 I notice Jason Bourne throws the $20 000 to the girl then ask for a lift to Paris. Of course she gets suspicious and says no. Bourne replies “ok, can I have my money back?”, she thinks about it then the next scene they are on their way to Pairs… I have a feeling he was expecting a no for an answer which is why he made her hold the money, ask the question, and if no..ask for it back… Try giving back $20 000 in your hands with out it hurting..LOL..smooth Bourne..really smooth…

  5. What exactly is the device that Jason uses to start the car after he stole it? And to break into the Brecker hotel room? It sort of looks like a screw driver

  6. in ultimatum…why did bourne have to tell noah vosen…he was in his office,he should not have done that… jst cal let the mn sy his name and cut the line off…definately!

  7. Bluetooth handsfree devices were prevalent at the time of Supremacy & Ultimatum, but Bourne never uses them. why? all wireless technologies run the risk of being hacked and eavesdropped. a wired headset cannot be intercepted.

    in Identity he manages to not kill The Professor outright with a shotgun. this is *exoeptionally* hard to do with a field effect weapon, and is evidence of his proficiency.

    in Ultimatum he reverses off the Port Authority car park roof, and later slams a pursuing car with the rear of his own. the boot or trunk of a car is a large empty space with a good distance between the bumper and anything vital (the rear axel). sacrificing this dead space leaves him with a fully functional engine. at least for a little while. Bourne applies this strategy of “acceptable loss” to everything, even to himself – he endures physical damage (e.g. the impossible fall off the bridge in Berlin) if it improves his chances of survival sufficiently.

    Bourne crosses frontiers where possible in trains or boats – considerably lower security than flying.

    Finally, by far the greatest spy tool – and one Bourne posseses – is a facility for, and extensive knowledge of many languages.

    Nice page, thanks!

  8. Oh, and it is Duck Tape – devised during WWII by applying adhesive to strips of cotton duck.

  9. To those saying Bourne doesn’t use a Bluetooth headset due to risk of interception that doesn’t make any sense…think about it…the phone itself is wireless so what would it matter if a 30m range headset was being used as well?

  10. I’m not too sure about that — I think a Bluetooth headset would be a less secure than a wired headset simply by introducing another way to hack the signal.

  11. Bourne tells Noah he’s in his office because he wants Vosen on him at the office and not Landy, so that she doesn’t lead Vosen to their meeting point. Also, by wasting the CIA’s time securing the floor and getting them to go back to the office, he & Landy reduce the number of people they can send exchange the file.

  12. In Bourne Identity, when Bourne realizes there’s a sniper who has most likely set up an observation post because the family dog is missing, he finds shotgun shells inside the drawer and takes a look around to see children’s toys around the dwelling. Thinks to himself, “Ok, children frequent this room so weapons may be kept up high.”. He finds and grabs the shotgun on top of a high cabinet. Blows up the gas tank outside for a distraction and smoke screen and tries to move up away from the estate. He leaves the estate property in a zig-zag as to not give away his next turn up the hill by keeping his head straight as he moves. Of course this creates a much difficult target for a sniper as they must feel and predict their target’s next move because Jason is turning at random intervals without telegraphing his true direction/heading/azimut. After making “the Professor” miss with several shots while Bourne breaks out in an all-out sprint to keep pushing position. The Professor immediately falls back to a safer location where he has 360 degree visual and is well hidden among high grass. Bourne gets to the same level atop the hill and takes a look around to see that the Professor has hidden himself well. Bourne takes a look around to assess the terrain, possible hiding locations (practically everywhere) and hears birds chirping but does not see any in flight. Bourne then takes a shotgun shot in the air to make settled birds’ (he obviously learned this from being trained in woodland areas that birds like to settle down in their flocks as well when not in flight) noise from wing flapping and screaming to flank the Professor’s position using the sound distraction and to use the bird’s directional flight to determine where the Professor’s true location is as they will immediately fly away from any human contact they visually see. Bourne can also tell by the formation of the flock in flight (scattered and squacking) that THERE IS in fact “a visitor” among the woodland terrain. The Professor, an intelligent assassin as well realizes Bourne’s tactic here and decides to go close quarters and switch to his sidearm 9mm handgun (please correct me if I’m wrong on the size of the handgun) and attempts to close with Bourne at more of a panicked state at this point in hopes of catching Bourne off-guard with his aggressive approach. Bourne after flanking, stands next to a tree as cover, waits and reloads to see the Professor running out of the high grass area. As Dermot Canniffe said in an earlier post here, very difficult to hit a target with a shotgun blast, not kill them and already know in advance it’s best to interrogate the target before they die. They ARE intelligence gatherers as well as assassins.

    Just wanted to add great website on a personal note, I hope it continues to attract more analyses!

  13. A word about the shot gun, the gun collected from the farm house would be for small game, even if used for boar “00” gauge would be the largest shot used, this shot is about the size of 9 x 9mm ball bearings, during a training session I had, these weapons + others were deomo’d for effect, the “00” gauge went through the first layer of a car bonnet but failed to go through the ribs behind and bird shot just skipped off the bonnet, firing at a safe distance from the gas tank would have at most scratched the paint. Hitting the proffessor and not killing straight away is feasable as the spread of shot gets considerably wider over distance and the power drops of significantly as well, you can choke the barrel for a tighter shot but don’t see Jason doing this,
    Delta 5-1 wonders if the prof uses a 9mm, most probably as its the most commonly used pistol round and easy to get hold of in most countries, When looking at a gun most people quote what it is and in what caliber, but by a change of barrel, spring and mag many guns can fire a variety of rounds, my own IMI 941 was in 9mm but could be converted to 10mm/Sw40AE and .45 ACP.
    Using the mobile phone via wire or blue tooth? wouldn’t make much difference as the phone is already transmitting its approximate position, having the number of the incoming phone is far more useful than the limited bluetooth range being picked up as the GPS signal can be traced to within 5m now days.

  14. to all the mates, about this topic and to LONE IGUANA,… thank you for the sharings, guys…. this is so dangerous in real events…but i just wanted to tell you… it’s in the blood, whoever he is… ‘ it is his choice’…

  15. Come on, Bourne was a super cool guy, however I do not believe that anyone can do it in a real life. Maybe some well trained person from special military forces can repeat his deeds, but I am sure that guys without special training will not be able to do that.

  16. Gentlemen, When I am on TechOp I never use a Bluetooth Headset because a Bluetooth Headsets uses a rechargeable battery with a limited use period in comparison to a wired earpiece that uses no more power than the phones internal speaker and microphone.

  17. What is the name of monocular?(JASON BOURNE used)
    (According to my guess, it’s maybe “BARSKA BLUELINE 10X40 CLOSE FOCUS MONOCULAR)

  18. I always wondered how Bourne got the finger print of Vosen, because the safe is voice AND fingerprint activated.

  19. @david not sure, but thanks for weighing in!

    @joel If you watch carefully, Bourne actually pulls a print from Vosen’s mouse and uses that

  20. omg, perfect place to be this website. happy to discover it 🙂

    my guess is that the monocular he uses is one with zoom functionality, by the looks of it i will say it is

    10-25x42mm Battalion Zoom Close Focus Monocular By Barska

    however, no matter how hard i look, i seem to think what he has is a bit thinner and more compact than this and has a button…

    What is the name of monocular?(JASON BOURNE used)
    (According to my guess, it’s maybe “BARSKA BLUELINE 10X40 CLOSE FOCUS MONOCULAR)

  21. What is model of panasonic telephone in Bourne’s home that he uses after taking Marie in his home in ‘The Bourne Identity’? Further clarification: watch 40 mins 40 secs of ‘The Bourne Identity’.

  22. For the Bourne Supremacy, you need to see the deleted scenes. he gets the car by buying it off someone at the port as he is escaping.

  23. RE: Supremacy deleted scenes, I wonder why they deleted some of them. To me, parts of the movie made more sense. Example is Bourne burning the papers. Deleted scene shows him walking to the cabin where he had them stashed.
    RE: Safe deposit box scene. May I suggest among the contents of the box should be a bag that holds all of the stuff. Kind of stood out carrying that bright red bank bag. In addition, have the stuff already in the bag so you can grab it and run if needed. Situation may arise you may not have time.

  24. In watching all of the Bourne movies and a few others, I have been fascinated by the secret hiding places used to hide stuff. Among them is the cash behind the drawer in Supremacy after Marie was killed, as well as the deleted cabin scene where he burns the papers. Another is in Legacy, with the stash behind the back door panel, which I am not sure about, because my wife has the same Buick, and haven’t figured out how the panel was removed.
    Learning about CIA, spies, etc mostly through movies like this and books, mostly fiction…
    Do they really do this in real life, or is it just another TV/movie thing?
    Like the car scene mentioned above, was it his car that he prepped and parked there at some point before, like putting stuff in a locker at the train station like Bourne did?
    The cabin scene mentioned, did he own the cabin himself, or rent it from someone?
    Same question, different movie, Enemy of the State, did Brill own the warehouse that had his “jar” in? I can see blowing up a building you own, but if someone else owned it?

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