Skip to main content

#067 Luc Besson: Leon: The Professional vs. Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard



Download MP3 In today's episode Nate and Austin compare Luc Besson's best and worst rated films,  Leon: The Professional (1994) and Arthur and the Revenge of the Maltazard (2009), respectively. Nate hates Malt Lizards, Austin thinks Natalie Portman peaked in Phantom Menace, and they both are HITMEN for GARY OLD-MAN. Check back next Sunday at 7pm PST where we will compare Kathrn Bigelow's The Hurt Locker (2008) and Blue Steel (1990), her best and worst rated films.
Also check out this behind the scenes footage from the making of Leon: The Professional: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMF7e98gPJc

Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard Notes

Worst Rated

PLOT: Arthur answers a distress call from Princess Selenia, who is menaced by the nefarious Maltazard.
  • Ratings: IMDb 5.6 | RT 14% C / 32% A
  • Released: 2009
  • Director: Luc Besson
  • Writer(s): Patrice Garcia (characters and universe), Luc Besson (screenplay) (dialogues), Luc Besson & Celine Garcia (characters)
  • Cinematographer: Thierry Arbogast (The Fifth Element, Lucy, La Femme Nikita)
  • Notable actors: Freddie Highmore, Selena Gomez, Logan Miller, Omar Sy, Mia Farrow, Fergie, Jimmy Fallon, Snoop Dogg, Will.i.am, Cem Yilmaz, Robert Stanton, Penny Balfour, Lou Reed
  • Budget: $90 million
  • Box office: $78.5 million
  • Fun Facts:
    • Arthur and the Great Adventure is actually a UK only release, an edit of the second and third films, Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard and Arthur and The War of The Two Worlds

Leon: The Professional Notes

Best Rated

PLOT: Mathilda, a 12-year-old girl, is reluctantly taken in by Léon, a professional assassin, after her family is murdered. Léon and Mathilda form an unusual relationship, as she becomes his protégée and learns the assassin's trade.
  • Ratings: IMDb 8.6 | RT 71% C / 95% A
  • Released: 1994
  • Director: Luc Besson
  • Writer(s): Luc Besson (written by)
  • Cinematographer: Thierry Arbogast (The Fifth Element, Lucy, La Femme Nikita)
  • Notable actors: Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, Natalie Portman, Danny Aiello, Peter Appel, Willi One Blood, Don Creech, Michael Badalucco, Ellen Greene, Elizabeth Regen
  • Budget: $16 million
  • Box office: $46.1 million
  • Fun Facts:
    • During the scene when Stansfield 'interrogates' Mathilda's father, he smells the father, and gets extremely physically close to him. According to Michael Badalucco, he had no idea that Gary Oldman was going to smell him, nor that he was going to get as close as he did. Badalucco says that in the film, his look of discomfort during the scene is completely genuine, as he felt decidedly intimidated by Oldman, and the physical proximity between the two made him very nervous.
    • According to Jean Reno, he decided to play Léon as if he were a little mentally slow and emotionally repressed. He felt that this would make audiences relax and realize that he wasn't someone who would take advantage of a vulnerable young girl. Reno claims that for Léon, the possibility of a physical relationship with Mathilda is not even conceivable, and as such, during the scenes when such a relationship is discussed, Reno very much allowed Mathilda to be emotionally in control of the scenes.
    • The scene in which Stansfield talks about his appreciation of Ludwig van Beethoven to Mathilda's father was completely improvised. The scene was filmed several times, with Gary Oldman giving a different improvised story on each take.
    • This is Natalie Portman's motion picture debut. She was 11 when she was cast.
    • Keith A. Glascoe, who played the enormous Benny, or 3rd Stansfield Man, later became a member of the New York Fire Department, Ladder Company 21 in Hells Kitchen. Courageously he died in the collapse of the World Trade Center towers on Sept. 11, 2001.
    • In a 2014 Playboy interview, Gary Oldman said his screaming of the now iconic line 'Bring me everyone!' was improvised to make director Luc Besson laugh "in previous takes, I'd just gone, "Bring me everyone," in a regular voice. But then I cued the sound guy to slip off his headphones, and I shouted as loud as I could." The yelled take is the one used in the film.
    • When the film was first tested in LA, the version that was screened incuded a short scene where Mathilda asks Léon to be her lover. However, the audience became extremely uncomfortable and began to laugh nervously, completely destroying the tone of the film. The film received terrible test scores at the screening, and as such, producer Patrice Ledoux and writer/director Luc Besson decided to cut the scene for theatrical release.

Intro music: Calm The Fuck Down - Broke For Free / CC BY 3.0
 

Check out this episode!

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Richard Armitage interview on SLEEPWALKER

SLEEPWALKER is the latest film from director Elliott Lester. Troubled by bouts of sleepwalking and disturbing nightmares, graduate student Sarah Foster goes to her university's sleep research center for help. When she wakes up after her first night of being monitored, the world she lives in seems to have changed in subtle, Twilight-Zone-esque ways. In fact, every time she goes to sleep now, she wakes up in a slightly different version of her world. With the help of sleep researcher Dr. Scott White, she tries to work her way back to the reality she started in. But when they finally succeed, it’s revealed that Sarah’s world is not what she thought at all.

Today my guest is one of the stars SLEEPWALKER, Richard Armitage. Tonight we talk about his work on that film as well as his work as Thorin Oakenshiled in The Hobbit Films, as John Proctor in The Crucible, and his upcoming films Ocens 8 and the Julie Delpy directed film My Zoe.

Sleepwalker is Now Available on Digital HD and On Dem…

LAFF Review AND THEN THERE WAS EVE

2017
Directed By: Savannah Bloch
Starring: Tania Nolan, Rachel Crowl, Mary Holland, Karan Soni, John Kassir, and Anne Gee Byrd



Alyssa (Nolan) wakes up to find her home pillaged and her husband missing. The burglars have taken everything, down to the photos of her husband. The police offer little help so she turns to a friend of the family Eve (Crowl) for assistance. The film is less of a "who done it" and more of a "what happened."

The prolonged second act of the film focuses on the relationship between Eve and Alyssa. The suspense of the film lingers in the background while their relationship grows. In fact, clues of what is to come are clearly laid out in a way that allows the viewer to see where the film is headed before it gets there. I'm not sure if this is by design but the effect of having the stories trajectory clearly laid out gives the audience permission to accept this blossoming relationship.

Nolan and Crowl both give stunning performances that anc…

BFF review SWEET PARENTS

SWEET PARENTS review 2017
Directed By: David Bly
Starring: David Bly and Leah Rudick
Written By: David Bly and Leah Rudick

Moving to New York City with ambitions of making it as an artist is an uphill battle. Hell, moving to New York with ambitions of breaking into fast food is an uphill battle. Exorbitant rent makes it difficult if not impossible to get a temp job while you audition, paint, write, or sculpt. And paying $28 for an artisan PB&J not only has a heavy tax on your pocketbook, over time it can carry a greater burden on your soul. Spending tons of money to only feel like you are barely keeping your head above water is a crushing way to exist.

SWEET PARENTS is the story of a young couple who have been living the artists struggle in NYC for close to 8 years. Will has dreams of making it as a Chef and Gabby wants to become a professional sculptor. Both start side relationships, as last ditch efforts to support their careers, in what becomes a choice between ambition and lo…