62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Leon - brilliant - one of Besson's best!!, 8 Dec. 2002
Leon is amongst my favourite films (incl. Dernier Combat, Subway and Big Blue). Film follows the story of an 11-year old girl (Nathalie Portman) and hit man (Jean Reno) who takes Portman under his wing after her family is killed by corrupt cop (Gary Oldman).
Oldman delivers a superb performance in his portrayal of a psychotic, drug snorting, truly unpleasant villian (listens to Beethoven's symphony to inspire him before a killing - both comic and chilling; somehow this and True Romance's pimp roles seem made for Oldman)!
Besson's talent is evident in his portrayal of the relationship between Reno and Portman. He deals with delicate themes such as Portman being the adult at times - she's a mother to her brother, wanting to appear mature as she smokes her cigarette when she first meets Leon vs. Leon playing the father figure/professional hitman role yet being a child himself, is moving; the sexual chemistry between the characters is warm and natural without being sordid. Superb film - not to be missed.