“The rifle is the first weapon you learn how to use, because it lets you keep your distance from the client. The closer you get to being a pro, the closer you can get to the client. The knife, for example, is the last thing you learn. ” – Leon
Number of Times Seen – at least 10 times (video in 1995, cable, DVD and 11 Feb 2015)
Brief Synopsis – An Italian hitman living and working in NYC, meets and befriends an 11 year old orphan girl which changes both of their lives in ways they never anticipated.
My Take on it – I remember when I first heard of this movie and its very irregular premise.
I had absolutely no expectations that I would like it and I was completely blown away by the story and the friendship between the two main characters Leon and Mathilda.
This was Natalie Portman’s first movie role and she has only gotten better as the years have passed.
Jean Reno plays his character with such innocence that it’s hard not to like him despite his very ruthless profession.
Gary Oldman plays the villain excellently and it’s unfortunate that he doesnt get more recognition for being such an amazing actor.
The message about love, trust and friendship is very powerful and heartwarming and this is a hard movie not to like.
This is my favorite movie from Luc Besson.
Bottom Line – My favorite Luc Besson movie because despite its irregular premise it works extremely well. Leon and Mathilda’s friendship is unexpected yet heartwarming. Oldman’s character is ruthlessly excellent. Very powerful film. Highly recommended!
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – According to Patrice Ledoux, Luc Besson planned Léon as filler. At the time, he had already started working on The Fifth Element (1997), but production was delayed due to Bruce Willis’s schedule. Rather than dismiss the production team and lose his creative momentum, Besson wrote Léon. It took him only 30 days to write the script, and the shoot lasted only 90 days. Ironically, Léon is now generally considered to be a far superior film to The Fifth Element. (From IMDB)
Rating – Oscar Worthy
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