Friday Movie Flashback: ‘Léon: The Professional’

“Léon: The Professional,” or simply “Léon,” differs from most thriller films in the sense that it’s actually heartwarming and amusing to an extent.

“Léon” was released in 1994 and was written and directed by acclaimed French director Luc Besson. In a nutshell, it follows the story of a professional hitman named Léon (Jean Reno) who, at first, unwillingly takes under his wing his 12-year old neighbor Mathilda (Natalie Portman) whose entire family was brutally shot to death by Drug Enforcement officer Norman Stansfield (Gary Oldman) and his henchmen, believing that Mathilda’s father stole a portion of the dope that he was asked to keep.

“Léon” is excellent in every aspect and all, but what I found to be most interesting was young Portman ‘s portrayal of a complex 12-year old delinquent in every sense of the word. She’s smart beyond her years although she skips school, smokes, curses, hates her family to the core except for her younger brother, harbors thoughts of revenge towards those who murdered her family, and even asks to be trained to become a “cleaner” like Léon. Despite all these, she manages to maintain an aura of innocence about her. It’s almost hard to believe that this was Portman’s feature film debut!

There’s also this bit about Mathilda falling in love with Léon. The girl wasn’t exactly discreet about her feelings for the man old enough to be her dad, but amazingly, this plotline didn’t come out as uncomfortable or disgusting. If anything, I found it hilarious especially with Léon choking on his usual glass of milk whenever Mathilda would say anything that would surprise him!

I honestly only have praises for “Léon.” The entire storyline was great with its hilarious and light and serious and action-packed moments. The actors, too, were all excellent in the portrayal of their respective characters. Reno was almost adorable playing the merciless yet soft-spoken and mild-mannered hitman. Likewise, Oldman was effective portraying the role of the crazed government agent who’s also a big fan of music. I might be almost two decades late for the party, having finally seen it only after watching a documentary about Portman last weekend, but hey, it’s never too late to appreciate good films! Needless to say, “Léon” is now in my list of favorite movies!

Video via YouTube

Like this article? Check out our articles from the Friday Movie Flashback series in the Lomography magazine!

written by chooolss on 2013-11-08 in #lifestyle

More Interesting Articles

  • Friday Movie Flashback: ‘The Prestige’ 2006

    written by cheeo on 2014-08-29 in #lifestyle
    Friday Movie Flashback: ‘The Prestige’ 2006

    In a world of magic, how do you know what is real and what is just an illusion? Christopher Nolan’s 2006 film ‘The Prestige’ is a thriller drama that revolves around what it takes to fully achieve fame through magic and deception.

  • Friday Movie Flashback: ‘Stranger Than Fiction’

    written by chooolss on 2014-03-14 in #lifestyle
    Friday Movie Flashback: ‘Stranger Than Fiction’

    "Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn't," so says Mark Twain in one of his oft-quoted statements, from which the title for this week's Friday Movie Flashback feature takes its title from.

    1
  • Friday Movie Flashback: ‘Full Metal Jacket’

    written by cheeo on 2014-08-01 in #lifestyle
    Friday Movie Flashback: ‘Full Metal Jacket’

    Full Metal Jacket, one of director Stanley Kubrick’s greatest films played around the idea of war and the different types of men that fight them. It has become a modern classic as far as war movies are concerned.

  • Shop News

    Immortalize your best shot on Aluminium!

    Immortalize your best shot on Aluminium!

    Carefully enlarged from your negatives onto premium photographic paper by lab professionals, each picture is a unique piece of craftsmanship.

  • Friday Movie Flashback: Hunger, 2008

    written by cheeo on 2014-09-12 in #lifestyle
    Friday Movie Flashback: Hunger, 2008

    Filmmaker Steve McQueen’s volatile mix of sacrifice, politics and protest turned out to be one of the most riveting historical dramas in the 2008 film Hunger.

  • Lomography x Zenit New Petzval Lens: Wandering Through The Big Apple

    written by jillytanrad on 2014-05-06 in #news
    Lomography x Zenit New Petzval Lens: Wandering Through The Big Apple

    There’s something about New York that attracts people, something that makes both visitors from the most bucolic places and tourists from the most cosmopolitan of cities fall in love. Countless movies and television programs have been filmed in New York, and so many songs have been written in reminiscence of the place. It’s not just the Empire State Building, Times Square or Broadway; there’s something special about the streets and the people who walk on them that make spectators stop, look, and listen.

  • Twosday Tuesday: Birds Flying Across the Pink-Tinted Sky

    written by chooolss on 2014-03-18 in #lifestyle
    Twosday Tuesday: Birds Flying Across the Pink-Tinted Sky

    Here at Lomography, we always like looking at the creative and random photos submitted by our community members in our downtime. And, amusingly, we find that there are a lot of snapshots that bear a striking resemblance to one another – be it in the way they were composed or in idea – even though they were taken in different parts of the globe!

    1
  • Shop News

    DIY Camera for Less!

    DIY Camera for Less!

    You can now have the Pinhole Art DIY 135 at 40% less! Start setting up your own camera, shoot in 35mm format and get those soft-focused wide-angled images.

  • Twosday Tuesday: The Eiffel Tower, Cross-ed

    written by chooolss on 2014-04-01 in #lifestyle
    Twosday Tuesday: The Eiffel Tower, Cross-ed

    Here at Lomography, we always like looking at the creative and random photos submitted by our community members in our downtime. And, amusingly, we find that there are a lot of snapshots that bear a striking resemblance to one another – be it in the way they were composed or in idea – even though they were taken in different parts of the globe!

    4
  • Twosday Tuesday: Itsukushima Shrine’s ‘Floating’ Torii Gate

    written by chooolss on 2014-03-25 in #lifestyle
    Twosday Tuesday: Itsukushima Shrine’s ‘Floating’ Torii Gate

    Here at Lomography, we always like looking at the creative and random photos submitted by our community members in our downtime. And, amusingly, we find that there are a lot of snapshots that bear a striking resemblance to one another – be it in the way they were composed or in idea – even though they were taken in different parts of the globe!

    2
  • Twosday Tuesday: Yosemite in Color

    written by chooolss on 2014-04-22 in #lifestyle
    Twosday Tuesday: Yosemite in Color

    Here at Lomography, we always like looking at the creative and random photos submitted by our community members in our downtime. And, amusingly, we find that there are a lot of snapshots that bear a striking resemblance to one another – be it in the way they were composed or in idea – even though they were taken in different parts of the globe!

    2
  • Shop News

    Petzval Buddies

    Petzval Buddies

    Petzval lens are designed for a Canon or Nikon SLR mounts and a selection of brass or black for each camera brand is available in our stores. And start shooting with images full of sharpness, crispness and bokeh effects!

  • Twosday Tuesday: The Lone Surfer

    written by chooolss on 2014-06-24 in #lifestyle
    Twosday Tuesday: The Lone Surfer

    Here at Lomography, we always like looking at the creative and random photos submitted by our community members. And, amusingly, we find that there are a lot of snapshots that bear a striking resemblance to one another – be it in the way they were composed or in idea – even though they were taken in different parts of the globe!

    2
  • Twosday Tuesday: Mirror, Mirror

    written by cheeo on 2014-08-26 in #lifestyle
    Twosday Tuesday: Mirror, Mirror

    Here at Lomography, we always like looking at the creative and random photos submitted by our community members. And, amusingly, we find that there are a lot of snapshots that bear a striking resemblance to one another – be it in the way they were composed or in idea – even though they were taken in different parts of the globe!

  • Twosday Tuesday: Keep Quiet At All Times

    written by cheeo on 2014-08-12 in #lifestyle
    Twosday Tuesday: Keep Quiet At All Times

    Here at Lomography, we always like looking at the creative and random photos submitted by our community members. And, amusingly, we find that there are a lot of snapshots that bear a striking resemblance to one another – be it in the way they were composed or in idea – even though they were taken in different parts of the globe!