Starting with a bloody tour de force - a drugstore robbery - this seldom lets up. The eponymous heroine, a punk-junkie sociopath, is given a life sentence for killing a cop, but after being drugged by her captors, wakes up believing herself dead. And so she is, officially: held in a secret government establishment which trains undercover assassins, she is given a new identity; and on her eventual release, she turns her violent tendencies to patriotic use, sporadically abandoning both her new-found respectability and her law-abiding lover to earn her keep with a gun. While Besson's relentlessly stylish noir-thriller suffers from occasionally implausible plotting and an increasing lack of clarity in its later scenes, it benefits enormously from a memorably assured, intense performance from Anne Parillaud. Her scenes with her prison boss/Svengali (Karyo) and her gullible lover (Anglade) are surprisingly touching, so that there is for once an emotional undertow to Besson's visual pyrotechnics, even if the film finally doesn't add up to anything very profound.
Cast and crew