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La Femme Nikita(Nikita)

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France, Italy · 1990
Rated R · 1h 57m
Director Luc Besson
Starring Anne Parillaud, Jean-Hugues Anglade, Tchéky Karyo, Jean Reno
Genre Action, Thriller

An urgent life-or-death dilemma befalls Nikita - the feral street girl and violent drug addict - after killing a police officer at point-blank. Hopeless, Nikita is given a new lease of life when she reluctantly exchanges her doomed fate for a secret government program that promises to train her into a cold-blooded assassin.

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Variety by

[Parillaud] remains a totally uninteresting figment of Besson's blinkered movieland imagination, especially when she's in the company of Karyo and Anglade, who provide balance to her overacting.


Washington Post by Hal Hinson

Parillaud is expressive but rather mundane. She's best at playing sullen, but there are so many French actresses who specialize in this particular talent -- the French have mastered the apathetic pout -- that she seems generic.


Chicago Reader by Jonathan Rosenbaum

The talentless but irrepressibly trendy Luc Besson ("Subway," "The Big Blue") dreamed up this idiotic story that seems vaguely inspired by Kubrick's (not Anthony Burgess's) "A Clockwork Orange."


San Francisco Chronicle by Mick LaSalle

The picture, for all its slickness and style, is empty, empty-headed and emotionally false… [It] has no more depth than "Pretty Woman" and occupies the same moral landscape. [5 Apr 1991, Daily Datebook, p.E11]


The New Republic by Stanley Kauffmann

The making of the film is so slick, the acting so exceptional, that we find ourselves trapped - caring about what happens to the three principals. [6 May 1991, p.26]

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