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The Assassin [1993] [DVD]

4.1 out of 5 stars 104 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Bridget Fonda, Gabriel Byrne, Dermot Mulroney, Miguel Ferrer, Anne Bancroft
  • Directors: John Badham
  • Writers: Alexandra Seros, Luc Besson, Robert Getchell
  • Producers: Art Linson, D.J. Caruso, David Sosna, James Herbert
  • Format: PAL, Subtitled
  • Language: English, French
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: 24 May 1999
  • Run Time: 104 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004CXI9
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 15,931 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

Product Description

Hollywood remake of Luc Besson's French thriller, 'Nikita'. Young punk Maggie (Bridget Fonda) kills a cop in a bodged robbery, but instead of being sent to the chair, is reinvented as a ruthless assassin, tutored by her government agent mentor Bob (Gabriel Byrne). Released into the community, she finds love with her Californian apartment's caretaker (Dermot Mulroney), but her professional obligations increasingly threaten to destroy her happiness. Harvey Keitel makes a cameo appearance as a ruthlessly efficient 'cleaner', not dissimilar to the one he plays in 'Pulp Fiction'.

From Amazon.co.uk

This is one of those Hollywood remakes of a European hit in which one can visualize a committee of studio executives sitting around and saying, "Okay, we know what made the original film unique and different and fun. How can we make that same movie and do exactly the opposite?" For-hire director John Badham (Saturday Night Fever) took La Femme Nikita, Luc Besson's undeniably sexy, original, and kitschy French film about a female assassin, and translated it into The Assassin, a calculating, mechanistic American thriller with no distinctive style. Bridget Fonda gamely plays the willowy street punk who becomes a high-society killer, but once that provocative irony is in place, the movie is pretty much a series of by-the-numbers action set pieces. Until, that is, Dermot Mulroney shows up as a love interest; but even that twist can't save this film. You're much better off with the original, subtitles and all. The DVD release has optional full-screen and widescreen presentations, production notes, theatrical trailer, optional French and Spanish soundtracks, and optional English, French, and Spanish subtitles. --Tom Keogh, Amazon.com

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
In the early Nineties Bridget Fonda had established herself as a bankable actress with roles in Single White Female, Lake Placid, Jackie Brown and this, a remake of the French movie Nakita. The Assassin (also known as Point Of No Return, which the cover for this DVD release acknowledges, as well as Codename Nina) certainly lacks the grittiness of the original but is none the worse for it. Fonda is given heavy weight support from the likes of Gabriel Byrne, Harvey Keitel and Anne Bancroft and asserts herself well as the action heroine of the title effectively portraying the sexy yet tough lead. Also worth a note is the dramatic score from supremo Hans Zimmer which helps crank up the many set pieces as well as nice use of Nina Simone tracks throughout. That said logic often takes a back seat and there are some blatant inconsistencies such as where Nina's many visible tattoos prior to her enrolment vanish to when she takes up her new role?! This DVD release is presented in 5.1 audio and widescreen so it looks and sounds great. However this is also essentially a bare bones release so it has no extra features of any kind save the scene selection. For the price though it's still an enjoyable pop corn action flick especially if you're a Fonda fan.
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Format: Blu-ray
'Bridget Fonda' plays 'Maggie' someone who is deep into the world of drug dependancy and crime, during a bungled robbery she kills a cop.............the trial jury return a verdict of guilty..............her sentence, death by leathal injection.
The event leads to a funeral at which she was absent, her identity was about to change as she is offered the chance to become an assassin or die as the sentence had stipulated.
Can this lady with a serious attitude be trained to be someone who could fit into any company without being questioned ?
'Maggie' enters a world of choices other than the tasks given to her, she likes the idea of freedom, but will she be given freedom from the commitments made ?
This is a good enough watch, however on 'blu-ray' ? The picture quality and sound quality is not good enough on this format.
The film has enough action and attitude to make it worth watching (even if it's just 'Bridget' you want to see)...but i would suggest .........buy 'DVD' (same quality I suspect)
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Great film but unfortunately the Blu Ray transfer doesn't do the film any justice at all as it is not any better than DVD quality.
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By Dan Smith on 21 April 2015
Format: DVD
It was heavily hyped when it first came out - and Bridget was drooled over by Barry Norman et al - but it wasn't just up to snuff. I think Hollywood gave way to a new wave of realism around this time which was probably a good thing.

Anyway, there is a lot of talking, and a couple of stand out moments (the hand job); but America can't compete with smouldering French existentialism - we love you America !
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Format: Amazon Video
I don't know what other people think, but I think it's a good movie. I think the movie would be better if it ended a little bit more sad. I watch it with my mother. The actor's performance was animated and devoted. At that time, the special effects of the film were good. The plot is very subtle.
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By Mark Barry HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 1 Dec. 2009
Format: Blu-ray
When you plop the BLU RAY for "Assassin" into your player, you're greeted with an FBI warning followed by its American title - "Point Of No Return".
This is of course the US disc de-chipped (or whatever the Hell it is they do) so that it can play on Euro machines.

But that's not what's depressing. It's the laziness of it...

If ever a disc was a textbook example of how NOT to present BLU RAY, then this is it. The print is awful almost the whole way through. There's blocking everywhere, blurriness and clearly no attempt to restore the film. Depressingly this release on BLU RAY only accentuates how badly filmed it was in the first place - in short its worse on this format than it was on DVD. It's not as bad as the BR versions of "The French Connection" and "2010" (see reviews), but it's close. There are no extras either. Personally, I've always liked the movie, but I wanted a better copy of it - and this is NOT it.

This shoddy release only reconfirms the worst fears of movie fans - film companies are throwing any amount of crap at the BLU RAY wall at the moment to bolster up the sales numbers - and it's being done without any care being given to the release.

Even if you're a lover of the movie, hire it first before you buy - 20 minutes in and you'll be too disappointed to reach for the credit card...

"The Assassin/Point of No Return" on BLU RAY is a very real reason as to why Amazon reviews exist.

One to avoid I'm afraid.
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Format: DVD
Point of No Return (AKA: The Assassin) is directed by John Badham and written by Robert Getchell and Alexander Seros. It stars Bridget Fonda, Gabriel Byrne, Dermot Mulroney, Anne Bancroft and Harvey Keitel. Music is by Hans Zimmer and cinematography (Panavision/Technicolor) by Michael Ferris and Michael Watkins.

When drug addict Maggie Hayward (Fonda) kills a policeman in cold blood, she is promptly sentenced to death by lethal injection. But maybe there is an out? A chance to work for the government?

Why so serious?

A remake of Luc Besson's Nikita, this was always going to suffer the usual remake taunts of why bother? Was it necessary etc? Point of No Return is a good honest action movie, it has style to burn, nifty photography and likable leading actors. The action is well staged and thrilling - and Hong Kongish in style, and bubbling away in the writing are themes of identity, absent parents and a delicately off-kilter oedipal angle. The Nina Simone soundtrack is terrific, while Zimmer works around Nina's songs with an aural assuredness that grabs the attention.

It doesn't push any boundaries, and although it has been noted in some neo-noir circles, it is only a borderline entry in that style of film making. But if kinetic is a good word for you, and ultra violence gives you a shot in the arm, then Bridget and her guns are definitely worth a first date at least. 6/10
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