Rolling through the second Luc Besson movie this month. Having just seen 0ne from his past and now the present I can confirm that the director has yet to lose his style nor cinematic touch. Andre is broken, bruised, and down on his luck. Riddled with the bullet holes of debt and bearing the heavy jacket fear lends Andre dangles and pleads from the Eiffel Tower railing. Although given the mercy of one more day Andre knows purification by pain is inevitable...broken legs, losing fingers, pretty much the whole 9.
Our bearded hero faces the conclusion that it's better to die on one's own accord than under the bats of the leg breaking mobsters. So while Andre stands at the edge of oblivion ready to drop like a rock from a Paris bridge a woman suddenly appears on the far ledge. Staring with her piercing eyes, dancing a cigarette between those tantalizing fingers, she suddenly drops off the bridge. In the fashion of "It's A Wonderful Life" Andre leaps to the rescue of this tall, long legged, goddess of a woman. "It would be a tragic waste for the world to lose someone as beautiful as you" ...To fast forward a bit... in the grand scheme Angela is an angel sent to teach our helpless hero the beauty of the world and importance of truth.
Luc Besson's world is bathed in black and white, a perfect pallet for the 6 foot tall chimney smoking angel. She glides through the frames towering over fragile little Andre whose short quick little steps perfectly contrast.
Although the core of the story is as recycled as a McDonald's drink holder the originality and the style that Besson brings leaves you unsure of where the story will end.
From my personal viewing experience I found myself continually guessing and trying to put the pieces together. "Where will brother Luc take me?". Undoubtedly I guessed wrong on almost every corner. As a result I'm thinking my second viewing will be much deeper of an experience. The next time screening will be more of a bath than a shower.
The camera work and acting are the strong points of the film. Both Andre and Angela fit too perfectly into their roles bringing dimensionality to the bold black lines Besson has painted with his camera.
Highly recommend this stylistic character driven pic. It has an old school feel and a beautiful message.