7/01/2009

Milestones: 'Le Dernier Combat' (The Last Battle)

A quarter of a century ago, when he himself was just 25 years of age, noted director Luc Besson (The Professional, The Fifth Element, The Messenger) debuted with a film that can only be construed as a disastrous self-parody:
a French, black-and-white, post-apocalyptic, sci-fi movie with no dialogue.

Until you watch it, that is.

At the center of the grim, doomsday thriller that is The Last Battle (1984) is a struggle for survival, mainly between a man and his brutish enemy (played by Besson regular Jean Reno) in as dire circumstances as the premise would indicate. While the film has deservedly earned its cult status, it's fitting to point out that Besson is an artsy Frenchman--stereotypical redundance? you bet--enamored with Hollywood, a balance which helps keep the film in check. Definitely worth seeking out.

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