Anne Parillaud

Anne Parillaud

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Map Of The Human Heart Review

I was enchanted with Map of the Human Heart when I first saw it in 1993. Revisiting it today I am less enthralled but still charmed. It's one of those movies that makes you legitimately feel like you've become part of its universe, particularly the scenes in the frigid arctic, which you can almost feel on your skin. A variety of actors play our two leads from childhood to adulthood, as an Eskimo boy and half-Indian girl taunt one another as children, then grow to love each other as adults -- despite the ravages of a raging World War, which makes for a fantastic love story backdrop.

Sex Is Comedy Review

Sex may indeed be comedy, but Catherine Breillat's film is woefully lacking it altogether.

This extremely small and shallow film tells a singular tale: A movie director (Anne Parillaud) is having trouble getting her stars to go through with the movie's big sex scene. She tries everything: Gentle pressure, the hard sell, different settings. Ultimately it all comes down to using an oversized plastic phallus in the scene instead of the actor's real member, and our director is sure this will solve all the problems.

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La Femme Nikita Review

Or just Nikita, as it was called before some guy at Samuel Goldwyn decided that they needed to make absolutely sure everybody knew the film was French and tacked-on that "La Femme." The film that made the career of Luc Besson (The Fifth Element, The Messenger) starts off on a Paris street as a quartet of jacked-up junkies, including Nikita (Anne Parillaud), stride over rain-slicked cobblestones towards the drugstore they're going to rob for their fix. After a shootout with the police, Nikita kills one of the cops in cold blood. Sentenced to death and supposedly executed, Nikita is instead secreted away into a government program where she's trained to become a secret agent.

For the greater part of her time in the program, Nikita acts like the addict-in-withdrawal that she is, ignoring her trainers and pulling a gun on her handler, the incongruously-named Bob (Tchéky Karyo). Then, threatened with a couple of weeks to get her act together, the antiauthoritarian punk becomes the perfect student. Before we know it, three years have passed and she's ready for her graduation present - an assassination mission at a restaurant that turns into a guns-blazing melee. Like the film's pulse-pounding beginning, it's an impressive bit of mayhem, mostly for the incongruous sight of Nikita, in her chic black cocktail dress, scurrying through a kitchen, blasting away with a massive handgun at thugs packing assault rifles and grenade launchers. But, whereas the opening scenes were shocking in their amoral ferocity, this shootout - including a scene where Nikita dives down a laundry chute to escape a blossoming fireball - shows Nikita to be just another action movie, with the usual tenuous-at-best grip on reality.

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Shattered Image Review

Oh, so it's a Baldwin movie. Billy Baldwin. How did classy actress Anne Parillaud get mixed up with this, billed as a "Hitchcockian thriller," about a woman who is haunted by dreams of another life as a hit-woman? We'll probably never know, and after an hour or so of trying to figure out the convoluted plot you'll probably stop caring.
Anne Parillaud

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