View Full Version : Leon/The Professional

12-18-2007, 09:32 PM
Following on my slight obsession this week with Mr. Oldman, I decided to watch this DVD again last night. I just love this film. And when you think of some of the subsequent movies that Luc Besson made, it is rather . . . how can I put it . . . restrained. It's so brilliantly shot (heh, that could so be a pun, heh), and the performances are brilliant. Yes Ms. Portman is stunning, but Jean Reno is just so charming. That man should be in way more movies, and I'm sorry but I sat through all of "Just Visiting" when it was on tv last week just to watch him.

Oh and Gary Oldman is . . . wow. He's one of those few actors who can genuinely disappear into a role. Hard to imagine he's the same fellow playing, say Sirius Black, or even Commissioner Gordon. He plays crazy rather well, and plays it so that it doesn't look like some actor indulging in playing crazy, but rather as a genuinely, freaky, "Put the gun down Stan . . ." crazy.

Has anyone seen the extended version? Do you know if it is available in Canada at all? I feel like I am missing out on stuff, or is it one of those extended editions where really the director should have left well enough alone?

Anyway, just wanting to extol it's virtues.

I go now.

Calla Lily
12-18-2007, 10:16 PM
This is the movie that made me fall in love with Jean Reno.

12-18-2007, 10:24 PM
Jean Reno ROCKS! I love that guy. And I loved The Professional. I haven't seen it in ages. I must go in search of a copy to rent for this weekend.

BTW, @Toothpaste, the kids are loving Alex. We're almost done and every night they beg me: just one more chapter...please...

12-18-2007, 10:25 PM
My favorite Gary Oldman character was Drexyl Spivey, the pimp in True Romance. The guy is a true chameleon.


I only watched The Professional once, many years ago. It was pretty cool.

12-18-2007, 10:45 PM
Yeah, people keep telling me I should see True Romance. So many movies. . . so little time . . .

(Caro - that's awesome!! That's like the biggest compliment ever!)

12-19-2007, 12:27 AM
Has anyone seen the extended version? Do you know if it is available in Canada at all? I feel like I am missing out on stuff, or is it one of those extended editions where really the director should have left well enough alone?

Seriously awesome movie with such a great atmosphere, story and mood. Lil bit o trivia, the same chica who played the fatman's blonde girlfriend (Mai Winn, I believe is her name) is the same girl behind the diva costume in The Fifth Element. She was also dating Luc at the time the movie was shot and surprised Jean Reno with the script (written by Luc especially for Jean) beforehand. Too cute, hehe. You can see her in The Professional 20th Anniversary Deluxe Edition DVD where she sees Leon as her love story with Luc when she was a teen (sans the hitman undertones o' course ;)).

As for the extended version, I think it's the international version that was trimmed down because the adult themed scenes involving a child that shocked early American test audiences. Luc's point with the scenes were to show a little bit more of the relationship between Mathilda and Leon. One scene involved him handing her a towel in the shower and she wouldn't care that she was completely naked and free in front of him. That scene didn't make the filming stage but was in an early draft that was aiming to show how grown up Mathilda thought she was.

This is (imo) the best website that shows the international scenes that were actually filmed but taken out. It has the script scenes and stills of the movie: http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Bungalow/5102/integ.htm (http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Bungalow/5102/integ.htm)

Looks like the extended version is available at Amazon.ca (http://www.amazon.ca/Professional-Widescreen-Luc-Besson/dp/B00004YYDI/ref=pd_ecc_rvi_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1198008852&sr=1-11)along with the deluxe version.:) (http://www.amazon.ca/Leon-Professional-Deluxe-Luc-Besson/dp/B0006GVJEE/ref=pd_ecc_rvi_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1198008852&sr=1-11)


12-19-2007, 03:10 AM
You have to watch the extended edition. I own it in fact. It explores their taboo relationship much more closely.

12-19-2007, 04:27 AM
Well I really want to see the extended version definitely, and it's cool to know it's available online. I will definitely check it out, thanks guys! :)

12-19-2007, 04:33 AM
What's the point of the taboo relationship, d'you think? Is it supposed to make us feel Leon is more human, or are we meant to be revolted, or what? I regarded Nat as a little girl in the film, nothing near womanly.


12-19-2007, 09:40 PM
Have you seen the french movie "Crimson Rivers" (Les Rivieres Pourpres) It stars Jean Reno and it's a fabulous movie. It's based on a French book, which is translated into english if you want to read it. Book is excellent too. But Jean Reno is great in that movie. It also stars a guilty pleasure of mine, Vincent Cassel.

You can get the movie dubbed, he dubs his own lines, but I really recommend the subtitled one. Subtitles are always better I think.

I loved THe Professional but I haven't seen it in ages. I feel a trip to Blockbusters coming on.

12-24-2007, 01:56 AM
I liked the extended version except for one scene...

Without giving too much away, we see Leon show Mathilda how to perform a hit by breaking into an apartment and shooting the target within. All very well and good but then we're treated to a rapid-fire montage of Leon and Mathilda breaking into dozens and dozens of apartment, presumably wasting dozens and dozens of people. I know Leon is a hitman, the targets are all slimeballs and he's training Mathilda but... I don't know, I think I prefered the more innocent version. By the end of the film, Mathilda is no more trained or affected for having had this particular mass murdering experience so it felt a little redundant to me.

I liked the rest of the deleted scenes though.

12-24-2007, 04:23 AM
What's the difference between the deluxe edition and the extended version?

Will Lavender
12-24-2007, 04:25 AM
Terrific film. The Reno/Oldman dynamic was just...I don't know if I've seen a movie quite like it to this day.

Call me ignorant, but I didn't know Luc Besson directed until I saw this thread.

12-24-2007, 06:07 AM
I loved the way Oldman would crack those capsules in his teeth before he went on a spree. It was so insane. Oh yeah, and the way he would shake his pillbox. I actually do that sometimes with a tin of "icebreakers" (pomegranite lemon candies) and think of him!

12-24-2007, 06:32 AM
What's the difference between the deluxe edition and the extended version?

From what I understand it's the extras. The extended int'l version features the movie plus the movie available in isolated score, trailers and the int'l ad campaign posters. The deluxe version has the movie and features interviews with all the main actors plus the crew as they reflect on the film and their experiences while shooting it. I think there's also a special featurette each for Jean Reno and Natalie Portman to tell how they met Luc and got their roles. Natalie's screen test is shown and she still looks too adorable for words.

And Jean, as always, is a major babe. :)

Must check out Crimson Rivers, it sounds pretty good.

12-24-2007, 07:00 AM
That sounds excellent. Thanks.

'Crimson Rivers' also features 'Eastern Promises' Vincent Cassel, so it's definitely something to check out.

I hear that the sequel to 'Crimson', with Christopher Lee, is also pretty good.

12-29-2007, 07:09 AM
This is a good flick. I own it and that is saying a lot.

12-29-2007, 02:33 PM
I have to go back and re-watch this now.

*adds in some more Jean Reno love* (I stopped playing Onimusha when I realised he wasn't doing the English voice, only the French voice...which made no sense whatsoever).