VALERIAN AND THE CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS
2017, STX Entertainment, 137 min, France, Dir: Luc Besson

Luc Besson’s visually spectacular new adventure film is based on the groundbreaking comic book series. In the 28th century, Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline (Cara Delevingne) are special operatives charged with maintaining order throughout the human territories. Under assignment from the Minister of Defense, the two embark on a mission to the astonishing city of Alpha - an ever-expanding metropolis where species from all over the universe have converged over centuries to share knowledge, intelligence and cultures. There is a mystery at the center of Alpha, a dark force that threatens the peaceful existence of the City of a Thousand Planets, and Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the marauding menace and safeguard not just Alpha but the future of the universe. With Clive Owen, Rihanna, Ethan Hawke, Herbie Hancock, Kris Wu and Rutger Hauer.


THE BIG BLUE
LE GRAND BLEU
1988, Gaumont, 138 min, France, Dir: Luc Besson

Sea lover Luc Besson lets his devotion to all things oceanic, particularly the experience of diving, run the full gamut of emotions here, making the water a character in and of itself. His very personal film is part mystical quest, part bittersweet romantic comedy, with Jacques (Jean-Marc Barr), who lost his diver father to the ocean, obsessed with proving himself more dolphin than man. Johanna (Rosanna Arquette) meets and falls in love with him while she is on a trip to Peru. She begins to follow Jacques on his mission, journeying to Taormina, Italy, where he will compete against childhood friend Enzo (Jean Reno) for a deep-sea free-diving championship (diving without oxygen tanks). “The real star of the film, however, is the third corner of the love triangle, the sea itself. Sumptuously captured by Besson's camera, and brought to life by Eric Serra's haunting score, it is sometimes beautiful and calm, other times dark and threatening. … There are so many reasons to love this film, and an opportunity to catch it in all its soaring majesty on the big screen should not be missed.” – Ben Stephens, Edinburgh University Film Society.


LE DERNIER COMBAT
THE LAST BATTLE
1983, Gaumont, 93 min, France, Dir: Luc Besson

Shooting in luminously stark black-and-white, director Luc Besson paints a bleak, evocative, post-apocalyptic portrait of a dying world where people no longer speak and sometimes the sky rains fish. For this, his debut feature, Besson remade his first film, the sci-fi short "L'Avant Dernier." With Pierre Jolivet and Jean Reno.


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