Starring: Sasha Luss, Helen Mirren, Luke Evans, Cillian Murphy, Lera Abova, Alexander Petrov, Nikita Pavlenko, Anna Krippa, Aleksey Maslodudov, Eric Godon, Ivan Franek
OUR RATING: ★★½
Action thriller written and directed by Luc Besson. The story follows Anna Poliatova (Sasha Luss), who beneath her striking beauty lies a secret that will unleash her indelible strength and skill to become one of the world’s most feared government assassins.
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Our Favorite Quotes:'We all have turning points in our lives. Most of the time, we can't see them until they're in our rear-view mirror.' - Alex Tchenkov (Anna) Click To Tweet 'It takes more than intelligence to act intelligently.' - Olga (Anna) Click To Tweet 'Adversity is a good teacher.' - Olga (Anna) Click To Tweet 'Trouble never sends a warning.' - Olga (Anna) Click To Tweet
Samy: What’s your name?
Alex Tchenkov: [to Anna] We all have turning points in our lives. Most of the time, we can’t see them until they’re in our rear-view mirror. But I’m here to tell you this is one of those moments. And every intersection offers several possibilities. You just have to pick the right road. And sometimes, those choices have to be made quickly.
Alex Tchenkov: It says here you like chess.
Anna: I can play.
Alex Tchenkov: Your profile interests us. You have talents and skills that we can help you develop.
Anna: Like what?
Alex Tchenkov: A sharp mind. Calm under pressure. And a certain amount of anger can be useful. Mostly though, you’re a blank key, which means you have the potential to open many doors.
Anna: You’re offering me a job?
Alex Tchenkov: I’m offering you a fresh start. One year’s military training. Four years operational in the field.
Anna: And when it’s done?
Alex Tchenkov: Five minutes ago, you had no future. Now you want to know what it holds? In five years, you’re free to go.
Anna: I’ve seen your face. It means, I either leave with you, or I don’t leave at all.
Alex Tchenkov: You see? I told you, you had a sharp mind.
Anna: No. I don’t like any of your proposals.
[she cuts her own wrist]
Alex Tchenkov: I think you’ve made the wrong decision.
Anna: You talk about turning points and choices. Those are just pretty words, if it means it’s going to take me to another shitty town, in another shitty box.
Alex Tchenkov: You have a right to make your own choices in your life. Go here, go there. Say yes, say no. But what you can’t do is reject life itself. Your life was a gift. Who gave it to you?
Anna: My parents.
Alex Tchenkov: And this is how you honor them? This is what your father would want for you? Their lives are over. But yours isn’t. Have a little faith.
Anna: Last time I put my faith in men, look where it got me.
Alex Tchenkov: Never put your faith in men, Anna. Put faith in yourself.
[Anna puts her hand on the cut on her wrist to stop the bleeding]
Alex Tchenkov: Good.
[Anna is being interrogated]
Lenny Miller: Sorry I didn’t introduce myself. I’m Agent Leonard Miller. I’m in Paris on assignment, jst helping out my French colleagues. I’m nice that way. So it’s quite the fairy tale you got going on here, huh? From a vegetable seller in Moscow, to a top-flight model in what, six months?
Anna: I sold Matryoshka dolls, not vegetables. It’s like, um, a little Russian doll.
Lenny Miller: Oh, okay. It’s like that story, The Little Match Girl. You know that story? This girl was selling matches, and it’s cold, and she dies. I mean, it’s depressing as hell. But you got out.
Lenny Miller: What was the nature of your relationship with Oleg Filenkov?
Anna: He’s a partner in the agency, and, um, I bump into him from time to time.
Lenny Miller: Was it ever more personal? Intimate? Sexual?
Anna: He flirted with me, but everybody does.
Lenny Miller: It must be tedious, fending off men all the time.
Anna: You get used to it.
Lenny Miller: When did you see him last?
Anna: Uh, last week, I think.
Lenny Miller: Mm-hmm.
Lenny Miller: Oleg died on Tuesday 27th at the Presidential Suite at Le Meurice. It just so happens that on Tuesday 27th, you entered Le Meurice at precisely 1:37 PM, followed by Mr. Filenkov at 1:58 PM. Sometime between 2:00 PM and 5:00 PM, Oleg and his bodyguards met the wrong end of a bad day. You left the hotel at 2:23. See?
[points to the hotel security footage]
Lenny Miller: Can you explain that to me?
Anna: Um, I sat at the lounge bar, and I waited for him, but, um, he never came. He said he wanted to meet me for a drink, and, yeah, I knew what that meant.
Lenny Miller: F*cking? I assume it meant f*cking?
Lenny Miller: You’re upset. I’m sorry.
Lenny Miller: Did you notice anything suspicious?
Anna: Like what? Like a huge guy strolling through a lobby with a machete?
Lenny Miller: No, more like a Beretta 92 with a silencer.
Anna: Can’t you look at the hotel security cameras?
Lenny Miller: Oh, you noticed them?
Anna: They’re everywhere.
Lenny Miller: The tapes were erased. Looks like we’re dealing with pros.
Anna: Look, I’m new in town. I’m working. Making my living. I don’t want to lose it all over this. I have a girlfriend. She’s very jealous. And, okay, yeah, maybe I would have slept with him, but I didn’t. Anyway, it wouldn’t be a crime, would it?
Lenny Miller: I’ve never seen a fashion show. Must be incredible.
Anna: I can get you complimentary tickets, if you want.
Lenny Miller: Really? I’d appreciate that. I’m in Paris for a little while. We should keep in touch.
Lenny Miller: I’ll see you around.
[he leaves the interrogation room]
[looking at Anna’s file]
Olga: I don’t see what I can do with her. She has no higher education. She’s a junkie.
Alex Tchenkov: Clean for a year. And her marks are excellent, whatever the subject. Look here. Marksmanship. Acting. She’s beaten everyone at chess.
Olga: Like I can give a shit if she plays chess! Tell me she can fix my f*cking heater, then I’ll care.
Alex Tchenkov: Knives is hundred percent. Driving.
Olga: Hmm. Oh, but she’s not the profile we’re looking for.
Olga: KGB needs smart agents who can size up situations, react quickly and appropriately. I thought we made our needs perfectly clear.
Alex Tchenkov: She has been trained with that in mind. Her general knowledge, her ability to generate options on the spot. She’s highly intelligent.
Olga: “It takes more than intelligence to act intelligently.” Dostoyevsky.
Anna: “Like a captive cast to the bottom of a deep dry well, I know not who I am, not what awaits me. Yes, it’s clear to me that in this cruel and obstinate struggle with Satan, I’m fated to emerge victorious. Then mind and matter shall fuse in perfect harmony, and the reign of universal will shall begin.”
Olga: Hmm. Chekhov. Seagull. Act one. The play within the play.
Anna: Your favorite play.
Olga: How did you know that?
Anna: I work for KGB, baby.
Alex Tchenkov: She has not been…
[Olga puts up her finger to stop him]
Olga: I’ll take her. On trial. It doesn’t work out, I’ll send her home in a body bag.
Alex Tchenkov: Deal.
Olga: Adversity is a good teacher.
Olga: Do you know why I have a limp? Come on. You must have read my file by now.
Anna: A minor accident. In Chechnya.
Olga: That’s the official version. The truth is that during training, I was dropped in the Karakan Forest in Siberia. There are wolves in the Karakans. There are also wolf traps, buried in the snow. So I dragged a steel jaw on my leg for three days. When I finally got back to the camp, my instructor handed me a screwdriver, and said, “Trouble never sends a warning.”
[on the phone]
Olga: So how’s your roommate?
Anna: Nothing I can’t handle. The French girl keeps hitting on me.
Olga: How’s the sex?
Anna: How do you know?
Olga: I work for KGB, baby.
Olga: Your target arrives in Paris next month. Be ready.
Anna: I will.
Anna: When my five years are up, do I have to stay in Moscow, or I can go anywhere I want?
Vassiliev: What’s all this about five years, Olga?
Olga: With all due respect, few have lasted five years in my department.
Vassiliev: Except you.
Olga: Except me.
Anna: So what does it all mean to me?
Vassiliev: You work for the KGB this year, five years, ten. Be happy and proud to serve your country.
Anna: With respect, I am happy and proud to serve my country. I have eliminated twenty-seven targets in two years. But I’ve been told that…
[Vassiliev takes out his gun and points it at Anna]
Vassiliev: There’s only one way to leave the KGB. Do you want to find out what it is?
Anna: No, sir.
Vassiliev: So don’t play with me.
[after beating up a model photographer]
Anna: That’s a wrap.
Olga: So Wurtenberg is waiting for you.
Anna: Where is the piece?
Mossan: Bathroom. Behind the second sink.
Mossan: Just one. A vicious bastard. We have eyes in the hall, but no way of getting a wire or camera in.
Olga: There will be no backups. So if there’s a hitch…
Anna: There won’t be.
Olga: Bring me the attache case, keys, documents, and the fingerprint. Any questions?
Anna: Which room?
[to the bodyguard patting her down for weapons]
Anna: Go any further and you will have to pay.
[to Anna’s target as Anna’ is preparing to cut his finger off]
Lenny Miller: Take a deep breath, sir.
Anna: Trouble never sends a warning.
Lenny Miller: Damn straight.
Anna: I figure we’re probably never going to be able to have that dinner.
Lenny Miller: Yeah, you’re probably right.
Anna: So let’s f*ck instead.
[Anna and Vassiliev are playing chess and she wins]
[suddenly Anna shoots and kills Vassiliev, then she points her gun at Alex]
Anna: I’m sorry, Alex.
Alex Tchenkov: You’re crazy. You’ll never make it out of here alive.
Anna: Lay down.
Alex Tchenkov: You’re a dead woman.
Anna: I love you too.
[Alex lays down on the floor and Anna injects him with a tranquilizer]
[Anna meets with both Alex and Lenny]
Alex Tchenkov: What the hell’s going on?
Anna: I came to say goodbye. For good. When I was a kid, I used to play with Matryoskha dolls way before I pretended to sell them on a street corner. I loved opening them up and looking at their beautiful faces. It’s a woman inside of a woman inside of a woman. Now there would be a doll made of me, what would she be? A daughter? A girlfriend? A Russian spy? A model? An American spy? If you go to the very smallest doll buried deep inside, what is she? I never knew. And I would like to find out. Whatever we had, each of us brought me here. It gave me the will to live and face to myself. Something I will never forget.
Alex Tchenkov: But you forgot the rules, Anna.
[she places a USB stick on the table and pushes it towards Alex]
Anna: Here. That’s what I got from the KGB.
[she places a disk on the table towards Lenny]
Anna: And that’s what I got from the CIA.
Alex Tchenkov: So what happens now?
Anna: You both got what belongs to you. Everything goes back to normal, and we part as good friends.
Lenny Miller: And if anything happens to you, there’s a copy someplace. It goes straight to the press, huh?
Anna: I hope you’re both as fond of me as I am of you. You’ll make sure this will never happen.
Lenny Miller: That’s a lot of faith to put in people you don’t really know, Anna.
Alex Tchenkov: In six months, the information you have will be obsolete. They will come after you, wherever you are.
Anna: I never had a single day of freedom. Six months is an eternity. And I better have it. Are we agreed?
[Lenny takes the disk]
Lenny Miller: I wish you the very best. For at least six months.
Alex Tchenkov: It’s a bitter pill to swallow.
Anna: I asked you once, if I found a way out, would you be on my side?
Alex Tchenkov: No. No. I said I would do my best.
Anna: That’s all I’m asking.
[long pause before Alex finally takes the USB stick from the table]
Alex Tchenkov: If you ever change your mind, come home to your family. Understand?
[Anna has tears of joy and relief running down her face]
Anna: The only family I have is at this table.
[she gets up and leaves]
Olga: What do you want most in the world, Anna?
Anna: My freedom.
Olga: Do exactly as I say, and I give you my word, you will be free.
[Olga watches Anna’s recorded video message]
Anna: I’ve applied everything you taught me these long years and now I’m out. I hope you’ll respect that. And I hope you’re proud of me.
[last lines; referring to Anna blackmailing her]
[Olga then deletes Anna’s entire KGB file]
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