January 22 - LÉON: THE PROFESSIONAL (1994)

"I want love, or death. That's it."

  Image credit: tumblr.com

Image credit: tumblr.com

Wow. What a movie. This is one of those classic films I missed for whatever reason, and I can see why it's so beloved. LÉON: THE PROFESSIONAL feels like a very special movie that doesn't seem aware of how special it actually is. Léon and Mathilda are excellent characters and I genuinely cared about their relationship. One exchange in particular really highlights Léon's vulnerability and sheds light on the dynamic between him and Mathilda:

Léon: You need some time to grow up a little.
Mathilda: I finished growing up, Léon. I just get older.
Léon: For me it’s the opposite. I’m old enough. I need time to grow up.

Jean Reno plays the titular Léon sensitively and lovably. He's... affected... in some way, which is a good choice on Reno's part because it successfully grounds his relationship with Mathilda in complete innocence. Speaking of Mathilda, this was Natalie Portman's first role in a feature film and she killed it. [NOTE: THIS IS ABOUT THE POINT WHERE MY COMPUTER CRASHED AS I WAS WRITING, AND I'M NO LONGER MOTIVATED TO RE-WRITE MORE THOUGHTS NOBODY READS ANYWAY. THE MOVIE IS GOOD.]

Tomorrow: Free