Rolling Stone - 03/21/1991
"...Savagely engrossing....It's wildly seductive and erotic..."
New York Times - 03/08/1991
"...A slick, calculating mixture of French contemplativeness and American flying glass....[Parillaud is] a nimble and dangerous-looking actress..."
Entertainment Weekly - 01/13/1995
"...Sensational..." -- Rating: A-
Los Angeles Times - 03/15/1991
"...Besson's cast here is quite good; Parillaud, Karyo and Anglade are all charismatic actors who can suggest levels of meaning..."
A beautiful junkie condemned to death for the murder of a policeman is given a chance to live - as a secret political assassin controlled by the government. Her lonely existence is warmed when she falls in love with a gentle, humorous man who knows nothing of her bizarre and mysterious life. Remade in the U.S. as POINT OF NO RETURN and in Hong Kong as BLACK CAT. It was also the basis for the popular US cable television series.
Description by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment:
From director Luc Besson (The Fifth Element) comes this "wild and irresistible" (New YorkPost) thriller about a vicious street punk turned sexy, sophisticated and lethally dangerous assassin. Starring Anne Parillaud, Jeanne Moreau and Jean Reno, La Femme Nikita is "slick, stylish and tremendously entertaining" (The New York Times)!
Rescued from death row by a top-secret agency, Nikita (Anne Parillaud) is slowly transformed from a cop-killing junkie into a cold-blooded bombshell with a license to kill. But when she begins the deadliest mission of her careeronly to fall for a man who knows nothing of her true identityNikita discovers that in the dark and ruthless world of espionage, the greatest casualty of all...is true love.
A strung-out sociopath, sentenced to death for shooting a cop, is instead turned into an assassin by the French government in this exciting, yet thoughtful slant on the "Pygmalion" story. Trained in martial arts and coached by her mentor, she is slowly transformed into a cultured, sophisticated feminine killer. But when she re-enters the real world and falls in love, she finds it impossible to reconcile her new feelings with her profession.
Anne Parillaud won the Best Actress Cesar and Donatello awards for 1990.
Shot in France and Italy in CinemaScope. Color by Eastmancolor. Began shooting April 10, 1989.
Released theatrically in Paris February 21, 1990; New York City March 8, 1991; and Los Angeles March 15, 1991. Released on video September 4, 1991.
An American version starring Bridget Fonda was made in 1992, entitled "Point of No Return." The two films also inspired the TV series "La Femme Nikita," premiering on the USA cable network in early 1997.
Rated BBFC 18 by the British Board of Film Censors.