Killing machine in tights

French director Luc Besson piles on the action, writes GEOFFREY EU

Published Thu, Aug 21, 2014 · 10:00 PM
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DIRECTOR Luc Besson has nothing if not a fertile imagination when it comes to films where the protagonist happens to be young, female and in great danger. Besson has created some memorable characters over the course of a 30-year career and along the way, has also proven to be particularly adept at action flicks with high body counts and wild car chases through the streets of Paris.

Besson's distinct visual style is on view in his new movie Lucy, about a woman who inadvertently accesses the deepest parts of her brain and unleashes that newfound power to spectacular effect. It combines elements of Nikita (1990), Leon: The Professional (1994), and The Fifth Element (1997) with the frantic, bullet-riddled action of the Transporter series.

Scientists have theorised that human beings utilise only about 10 percent of their cerebral capacity. What would happen if, say, someone had the key to unlock the maximum brain power at their disposal? The film opens with party girl Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) outside a swanky hotel in Taipei, tricked by her boyfriend into delivering a briefcase to a hotel guest. Pretty soon, she's in the clutches of Jang (Choi Min-sik), a brutal (but well-dressed) Korean gangster who displays an impressive talent for killing people.

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