Léon - Director's Cut 4K Blu-ray Review & Comments

djcla

Well-known Member
What a chore it must have been to sit through this all time classic for you @Casimir Harlow . I wasn't as much of a fan of the directors cut personally compared to the theatrical release.
 

Roohster

Distinguished Member
Is this Director's Cut the same as the extended cut on the 2017 US 4K release?

I really, really don't want to have to buy it again :p
 
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Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
What a chore it must have been to sit through this all time classic for you @Casimir Harlow . I wasn't as much of a fan of the directors cut personally compared to the theatrical release.
Well, there's a difference between sitting through it again, which simply never gets tiring, and watching a few minutes, then flipping the disc and watching the same scene again, then flipping the disc etc. etc.

And unfortunately if you didn't like the director's cut as much you'll be disappointed as it's the only cut on this release.
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
Is this Director;s Cut the same as the extended cut on the 2017 US 4K release?

I really, really don't want to have to buy it again :p
Yes. There are, and have only ever been, two cuts of the movie. The Theatrical Cut, and the Version Longue, which is called the Extended Cut in the US and the Director's Cut in the UK (and Version Longue in France). It's all the same thing.
 

Roohster

Distinguished Member
Thanks Cas :thumbsup:
 

Winnie1221

Active Member
How can this be an 8/10?!?!

Add all the 4 scores up, comes to 37, divide by four - 9.25! So SURELY it should be a 9/10 at least!

Somebody please explain how this got an 8/10?! Very strange.
 

djcla

Well-known Member
Well, there's a difference between sitting through it again, which simply never gets tiring, and watching a few minutes, then flipping the disc and watching the same scene again, then flipping the disc etc. etc.
Cant you get AVF to fund you 2 identical brand new 65" OLED TV's and disc players to save you that hassle :)
 

dms

Active Member
Have to admit I preorded this and would only have cancelled that if Casimir had identified something wrong with the disk. A part of me is peeved about only having the one cut but it's not the end of the world.

I have a love/hate with the film. I love the music (I bought the CDs for all of the early Luc Besson films with Eric Serra composing) and Reno/Oldman are amazing but something about Portmans character always annoyed me... then there was the problem that it wasn't in French! That said since I last saw it I have a daughter now who I ram my own world view on every day and sword fight with, so when I watch it again it will be through a different pair of eyes.
 

steviedr

Distinguished Member
Well, there's a difference between sitting through it again, which simply never gets tiring, and watching a few minutes, then flipping the disc and watching the same scene again, then flipping the disc etc. etc.
Sounds like the management need to purchase a PS5 for you next year, so you can simply toggle hdmi inputs ! ;)
Great review btw, sold my US copy for a silly price so may invest for a bit of DV later in the year.
 

crabby09

Active Member
How can this be an 8/10?!?!

Add all the 4 scores up, comes to 37, divide by four - 9.25! So SURELY it should be a 9/10 at least!

Somebody please explain how this got an 8/10?! Very strange.
To be honest... I'd have given it an 8 simply because it doesn't have both cuts - this constant double dipping because the producers are penny pinchers is getting tiresome.
 

Evinger

Well-known Member
Thanks for the Review Cas. The Theatrical Version was on special on iTunes US a little while ago, with DV & Atmos, so that version is happily sitting in my Digital Library. Would someone mind to let me know (Via a "spoilers" post) what the differences are between the two versions?
 

Tim2049

Well-known Member
Nice review. Leon has been my all time favourite film since I saw it back in '95.

Couple of points briefly if I may:

- Kudos for pointing out how the extended version actually diffuses the rather ambiguous nature of Leon and Matilda's relationship as portrayed in the theatrical cut. So nice to see that highlighted, because it's always infuriating when people imply that their relationship is 'dodgy'. This extended version sets the record straight.

- I thought it may be worth mentioning that a few of the 'new' scenes in this version have a pretty inferior look to them. It's definitely minor, but the montage of the two of them 'breaking and entering' doesn't look as good as the rest of the print. I found it quite jarring initially.

That's it! Great review. To be fair, I'd argue that this extended version is the only version that should exist. Apart from clarifying the subtext a little, it also has the wonderful russian roulette sequence and that absolutely adorable restaurant scene where Matilda...drinks a little too fast..(!) Really, really great moments...

Masterpiece. Was at the time & remains so to this day. Furthermore, it has arguably one of the most beautiful soundtracks of all time. Win win...
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
Nice review. Leon has been my all time favourite film since I saw it back in '95.

Couple of points briefly if I may:

- Kudos for pointing out how the extended version actually diffuses the rather ambiguous nature of Leon and Matilda's relationship as portrayed in the theatrical cut. So nice to see that highlighted, because it's always infuriating when people imply that their relationship is 'dodgy'. This extended version sets the record straight.

- I thought it may be worth mentioning that a few of the 'new' scenes in this version have a pretty inferior look to them. It's definitely minor, but the montage of the two of them 'breaking and entering' doesn't look as good as the rest of the print. I found it quite jarring initially.

That's it! Great review. To be fair, I'd argue that this extended version is the only version that should exist. Apart from clarifying the subtext a little, it also has the wonderful russian roulette sequence and that absolutely adorable restaurant scene where Matilda...drinks a little too fast..(!) Really, really great moments...

Masterpiece. Was at the time & remains so to this day. Furthermore, it has arguably one of the most beautiful soundtracks of all time. Win win...
Thanks!

Don't forget the ring trick, which I thought lends a much bigger payoff to the ending.
 

Tim2049

Well-known Member
Thanks for the Review Cas. The Theatrical Version was on special on iTunes US a little while ago, with DV & Atmos, so that version is happily sitting in my Digital Library. Would someone mind to let me know (Via a "spoilers" post) what the differences are between the two versions?
Sorry, I wish I'd read this before I wrote my rambling post above, some of which covers those extra scenes. Although not comprehensive, these are the extra scenes I can remember:

SPOILERS!!

- Leon and Matilda go to a fancy restaurant after her first 'proper' hit. It's a sweet scene which I wont spoil anymore. I would deem it 'essential though.

- Somewhat cheesy, but still very cool, montage of the two of them going to numerous bad guys' doors and breaking in. As I'd mentioned in my other post, the colour grading is a bit off in this sequence, but it hardly matters.

- Really interesting scene where Matilda wears the dress Leon had bought her and essentially propositions him, saying she'd like him to be her first. Leon, obviously, has no interest in this (given that he's actually the child out of the two of them). This leads to a game of russian roulette where Matilda makes him essentially choose 'love or death'. It's a tense scene, but it's fascinating. Perhaps most importantly however, it provides the context for when she sits up in bed, half-clothed, wearing make up the next morning! (the theatrical version therefore made one question what the bloody hell happened the night before?! Now we have our answer finally..)

There's a scene where we find out a bit about Leon's backstory, why he is the way he is..& why he's in the US working as a hitman. I'm 90% sure that's only in the extended cut. Sorry, been a few years since I last saw it...

Cool scene where Leon introduces Matilda to his, 'finance guy', Tony. Matilda lies about her age and gives Tony a very, very sultry look. Cool little scene, although not essential.

That's all I can remember off the top of my head i'm afraid. There are a few more bits I think, but these are the standout moments.
 
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Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
Thanks for the Review Cas. The Theatrical Version was on special on iTunes US a little while ago, with DV & Atmos, so that version is happily sitting in my Digital Library. Would someone mind to let me know (Via a "spoilers" post) what the differences are between the two versions?
Well... as above (sorry, cross-posting)

She goes one step further in forcing him to agree that he cares for her by playing russian roulette with live rounds.

They more closely examines the 'relationship' between Leon and Mathilda and rather than, say, implying anything by having them wake up from sleeping in the bed together, it goes straight for the jugular and has her say she wants to be with him.

He explains a long and tragic story about his true love, how it was forbidden, how the father disapproved and killed the daughter, and how his first kill was a rifle shot to the father's head before he escape to NY.

They agree to remain together, but not as 'lovers', and she says on the condition that he starts sleeping in a bed not on a chair.

And they go on a montage of 'hits' together where she helps distract the target, and he gets in and does his job (she also has some fun with a paintball gun to get her aim up). She further tries to teach him that the drugs etc. that these guys have are doing the 'killing' too, so if he says 'no women, no kids' he has to destroy the drugs.

The end of this montage is a superbly tense piece which ties in to the climax with Stansfield and basically involves a thing called 'the ring trick'.

You need to see it.
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
How can this be an 8/10?!?!

Add all the 4 scores up, comes to 37, divide by four - 9.25! So SURELY it should be a 9/10 at least!

Somebody please explain how this got an 8/10?! Very strange.
And the answer to the above is below:

To be honest... I'd have given it an 8 simply because it doesn't have both cuts - this constant double dipping because the producers are penny pinchers is getting tiresome.
 

jfinnie

Distinguished Member
I guess for anyone who doesn't have DV then it's a miss - and go buy the US version where you can enjoy the theatrical cut in 4K.

For right or wrong I much prefer the theatrical cut.
 

low-def.

Well-known Member
Itunes version seems to be called Leon, and no reference to a particular cut?
 

UMAR 3:16

Well-known Member
another quality review and once again in my rental list. these old classics are piling up on the list! :)
 

Diagnosticz

Well-known Member
Thanks Cas shame about this disc having the one cut. o_O But still a 4k version of this to enjoy and gives me a another reason to watch this masterpiece again . This along with La Haine are my fav French films
 

golden phoenix

Distinguished Member
thanks for the review Cas...another reason for to import the cheaper, complete version from the usa, although the loss of the isolated score is a bummer
 

Roohster

Distinguished Member
Personally I don't think the loss of the theatrical cut is a big deal, after seeing the extended version I'd never choose to watch the theatrical version again.
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
Personally I don't think the loss of the theatrical cut is a big deal, after seeing the extended version I'd never choose to watch the theatrical version again.
Agreed, personally, although the completist in me would be annoyed by not having both. And it's surely unnecessarily frustrating for those who prefer the TC, however wrong they are, lol.
 

Evinger

Well-known Member
It's a while since I visited my iTunes Copy, but went over there just now. The US edition has both versions - Theatrical Release with DV but no Atmos (My error, thought it did 🤷‍♂️), the extended version as yet HD & again the usual ATV 5.1
Hopefully, iTunes will update the Extended version, & pop Atmos on both
 

golden phoenix

Distinguished Member
Agreed, personally, although the completist in me would be annoyed by not having both. And it's surely unnecessarily frustrating for those who prefer the TC, however wrong they are, lol.
Are things like this are down to licensing for different versions in different territories?
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
Are things like this are down to licensing for different versions in different territories?
Maybe, as for years we only ever had the TC in this country. So perhaps that's owned by another company, and SC could only pick up the Director's Cut on licence for 4K.

It just seems like a missed opportunity to provide a perfect, complete package.
 

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