July 27, 1996
French actor Jean Reno says he won't portray a Nazi, rapist or vampire in a movie ("French 'Visitors' Star Has a Mission in the U.S.," July 16.) "I won't do anything that offends my moral sense," he says. Did he forget his role in "The Professional"? The article certainly did, since there was no mention of it. Jean, to refresh your memory: You were a hired assassin! You killed people for money! You taught a young girl how to shoot people! Contradiction, no? BRIAN SOERGEL San Bernardino
November 18, 1994 |
"The Professional" is being touted as the Hollywood debut of "La Femme Nikita" director Luc Besson, but, of course, "Nikita" was pure Hollywood in every way except the subtitles. It was more Hollywood than its Hollywood remake, "Point of No Return." Besson has a gift for amoral sleaziness that should serve him well over here. In his very first American film, he has gone straight for the smarm.
October 29, 2009 |
Things get tense when a lone voice in a group of unbreakable car guards balks at the plan to cash in on a major delivery of their own in Sony Pictures' "Armored," set to hit theaters Dec. 4. In the film, Matt Dillon gets bloodied and Columbus Short plays the new guy whose spark of morality sets the situation ablaze after a cop is unexpectedly shot during the heist. Director Nimrod Antal had to orchestrate a shoot that saw armored car stunts, gun battles, fire and a large cast that also includes Laurence Fishburne, Jean Reno, Skeet Ulrich and Milo Ventimiglia.
July 28, 2000 |
Cut down from 163 minutes to 119 and given a Hollywood ending, Luc Besson's "The Big Blue" was a total disaster for all concerned when it was released in the U.S. in 1988. Restored to its original length, "The Big Blue" returns, with a new CinemaScope print. It's still far from a masterpiece, but you can become deeply caught up in it by the time it reaches the ending Besson intended, and you can now understand why, in its original form, it touched so many audiences around the world.
September 27, 2002 |
The flaccid new French action film "Wasabi" is the cinematic equivalent of one of those tourist T-shirts your parents bring back from vacation--you know, they get to go to Tokyo and you get this stupid movie. Quite a few people were lucky enough to travel to Japan for the making of this film, including its screenwriter and prolific producer Luc Besson, who's best known here as the director of such gleefully corrupt entertainments as "La Femme Nikita" and "The Fifth Element."
June 29, 2001 |
"The Crimson Rivers" shows that Mathieu Kassovitz, one of France's most audacious young filmmakers--and actors--can go out and make a movie as big and bad as one of Hollywood's worst.