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7. Léon: The Professional (#27)

Someone’s coming up. Someone serious. Well, mostly.

Hosted by Andrew Quinn and Darren Mooney, The 250 is a fortnightly trip through some of the best (and worst) movies ever made, as voted for by Internet Movie Database Users. New episodes are released every second Saturday at 6pm GMT, with the occasional bonus episode between them.

This time, Luc Besson’s Léon: The Professional.

The tale of a professional assassin who takes in a young girl following the brutal murder of her family, Léon: The Professional is an action thriller featuring performances from Jean Reno, Gary Oldman and a very young Natalie Portman.

At time of recording, it was ranked the 27th best movie of all time on the Internet Movie Database.


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Non-Review Review: Leon (The Professional)

What makes Leon so fascinating is the combination a wonderfully disturbing script that puts a novel and unsettling twist on that “suddenly a father” subgenre, Besson’s understated direction, Eric Serra’s atmospheric score and a trio of fantastic central performances. The movie is never less than completely engaging, especially when it’s being very deeply uncomfortable. The movie is very much a “messed up”portrait of the survivor of a family massacre and her unconventional surrogate father figure, with the difficulties that both have adapting to their situation, although it’s probably Gary Oldman’s powerhouse villainous performance that you’re going to leave the film thinking about.

Leon is a bit daunted by the scope of fatherly responsibility...

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