Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 12
  2. Negative: 1 out of 12
Watch On
  1. 78
    Besson's visuals are, as always, vibrant and decidedly European. He fills the frames with odd-angled shots and alarming riots of color that catch you off-balance.
  2. The sheer oddness of the New York world constructed for this film--where cops and crooks are literally interchangeable, and Oldman and Danny Aiello are stranded in roles that pick over the leavings of earlier parts--ultimately seems at once too deranged and too mechanical.
  3. 63
    Besson has a natural gift for plunging into drama with a charged-up visual style.
  4. Ah, monsieur, you can lead a Frenchman to the Big Apple, but you can't make him a New Yorker -- and that's exactly what makes The Professional so fascinating.
  5. 75
    With some surprisingly strong character interaction, there's a lot to like about this movie, at least for those willing to look beyond all the bloodshed.
  6. Reviewed by: Joshua Klein
    80
    Few action films can claim such complexities without conceding the bang-bang stuff that brings in the big money.
  7. Reviewed by: Christopher Harris
    63
    Takes its viewers on a bouncing high-wire act between intense violence and sugar-sweet tenderness, with some light-hearted comedy along the way.
  8. Lacks the sexy elan of "La Femme Nikita" and suffers from infinitely worse culture shock. [18 Nov 1994, p.C18]
  9. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    70
    This is a Cuisinart of a movie, mixing familiar yet disparate ingredients, making something odd, possibly distasteful, undeniably arresting out of them. [5 Dec 1994, p. 93]
  10. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    50
    Luc Besson is a masterly director of stylish, thrilling, and humorous action set pieces, and this film's bravura opening and closing sequences are two of the year's best.
  11. Reviewed by: Lisa Nesselson
    60
    Widescreen lensing favors tight close-ups, and multiple shoot-'em-ups are edited with panache.
  12. 90
    Oldman is the least inhibited actor of his generation, and as this deranged detective, he keeps absolutely nothing in reserve.
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 224 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 47 out of 50
  2. Negative: 2 out of 50
  1. Aug 26, 2010
    10
    This movie is soo amazing! I **** love it.
    It's in the top in my list of favorites movies, and I think that is one of the best movies of all
    This movie is soo amazing! I **** love it.
    It's in the top in my list of favorites movies, and I think that is one of the best movies of all times.
    I saw it like 64165465643 times haha and it always surprise me
    Full Review »
  2. Hdog
    Jan 9, 2009
    10
    Absolutely fantastic, the least to say it is by far the best comedy/action/thriller/drama i have ever seen, Oldman is AMAZING, and the Absolutely fantastic, the least to say it is by far the best comedy/action/thriller/drama i have ever seen, Oldman is AMAZING, and the performance by Natalie Portman confirms that she is one of the most talented young actress of our time. To everyone that say this movie lacks in realism, that is part of the charm of this movie, just go and see some of Luc Besson's films they are farfetched and wacky and completely awesome, this is a perfect movie for people who are feeling down, its happy and sad at times. Definetly one of the best movies ever made. Full Review »
  3. Jul 20, 2013
    9
    Look, I don't consider myself to be a huge Natalie Portman fan, but geez, when this girl touches my heart, she touches my heart. This movieLook, I don't consider myself to be a huge Natalie Portman fan, but geez, when this girl touches my heart, she touches my heart. This movie is just... it's one of those films. It's beautifully shot, sometimes you'll forget you aren't in Paris aside the backdrop of Leon's grim reality. The script is fantastic, see: every interaction between Reno and Portman. It's a heartwarming story. A story of healing, of daughters, fathers, innocence lost, but a hope that never fades out. It's a story of brutal honesty, yet a quiet optimism always shines through. It captivated me on so many levels... I don't know. I was deeply affected. It's a worthwhile investment, and it's definitely "buy it" quality. A film I'll never forget and one that I can't wait to revisit once my batteries recharge. It's no walk in the park, but damn is it still a beautiful ride. Full Review »