Bruce Willis has got a strange on and off movie career. Usually, it’s in the off position. But, once in a long while, he’ll have a good film. The 5th Element is one of the latter. The commercials which ran for the movie, initially, promised, “The Star Wars of the ’90s.” A hard name to live up to.
Willis plays a retired space marine type in this movie. His character’s name is Korben Dallas. Dallas has now retired and lives in a nice small apartment in the mid-23rd century. A great evil in space is about to kill every living being on Earth. There seems to be no way to stop it. At least that’s how it’s seen by the government. A priest knows better. There are the four elements, which are in the form of bars. Then there is the fifth element, a being that is the catalyst for the weapon to stop this great evil. The only problem is that the aliens that were transporting these elements were shot down in space. The only thing recovered from the crash landing site was a portion of the fifth element. With this portion, they use a super-computer to spin up a new fifth element being. The fifth element is played by the beautiful, and oddly red headed, Milla Jovovich. From here the fifth element “drops in” on Korben Dallas, and they with the priest are off to find the other four elements.
The story in The 5th Element is not too strong. What is strong in this movie are the special effects and the set design. It is the vision of the future that is put into this movie that sets it apart from other mediocre sci-fi movies. The visions of the future that are presented are of the caliber of those of “Blade Runner” and “Metropolis.” Though not as dark as those presented in Blade Runner, the city in which Dallas lives is large, and the hover car chase early in the film is something to awe at. The other sets, including a futuristic cruise liner, Zorg’s office, and the apartment building in which Dallas lives are also places to awe at. Along with these beautiful places are the costume design. The police have the best outfits, large, bulky, with a large lamp over the right side of their chest, and gun holstered above the left shoulder.
The 5th Element is a movie to be seen, literally. The sights in this movie outweigh the story. The story itself is not too bad, it’s enough to keep the movie going along, but it is the presentation of the future that should really be seen in The 5th Element.