THE BIG BLUE
LE GRAND BLEU
1988, Gaumont, 138 min, France, Dir: Luc Besson

Sea lover Luc Besson lets his devotion to all things oceanic, particularly the experience of diving, run the full gamut of emotions here, making the water a character in and of itself. His very personal film is part mystical quest, part bittersweet romantic comedy, with Jacques (Jean-Marc Barr), who lost his diver father to the ocean, obsessed with proving himself more dolphin than man. Johanna (Rosanna Arquette) meets and falls in love with him while she is on a trip to Peru. She begins to follow Jacques on his mission, journeying to Taormina, Italy, where he will compete against childhood friend Enzo (Jean Reno) for a deep-sea free-diving championship (diving without oxygen tanks). “The real star of the film, however, is the third corner of the love triangle, the sea itself. Sumptuously captured by Besson's camera, and brought to life by Eric Serra's haunting score, it is sometimes beautiful and calm, other times dark and threatening. … There are so many reasons to love this film, and an opportunity to catch it in all its soaring majesty on the big screen should not be missed.” – Ben Stephens, Edinburgh University Film Society.


THE FIFTH ELEMENT
1997, Sony Repertory, 126 min, France, Dir: Luc Besson

Writer-director Luc Besson dreamed up the amazing world of THE FIFTH ELEMENT while in his teens, later turning it into one of the most expensive (and successful) blockbusters ever produced in France. Bruce Willis is flying his taxi through 23rd-century New York City when reconstructed humanoid Milla Jovovich drops into it; she and four stones from ancient Egypt are the only things that can stop an evil power - and its emissary, Gary Oldman - bent on Earth’s destruction. Bursting with eye-popping special effects, costumes and production design, this is an over-the-top sci-fi thrill ride from start to finish!


LA FEMME NIKITA
1990, Sony Repertory, 118 min, France, Dir: Luc Besson

After killing a policeman in a botched robbery, junkie Nikita (Anne Parillaud) is sentenced to life in prison. But a secret government agency fakes her death in order to turn Nikita into a professional assassin - a role she plays with remarkable skill. Jeanne Moreau and Jean Reno costar in the original French hit, which inspired an American remake (POINT OF NO RETURN) and TV series. In French and Italian with English subtitles.


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