Director: Georges Lautner
Starring: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Jean Desailly, Robert Hossein, Michel Beaune
More info: IMDb
Plot: French secret agent Joss Baumont is sent to one of the African countries to kill their president Njala. However, at the last moment the political situation changes and the French secret service turns him in to the African authorities, and he is sentenced to a long-term imprisonment. After the daring escape he returns to France and deliberately informs his former chiefs of his presence promising them to kill Njala who has just arrived to the country with the official visit.
My rating: 8/10
Will I watch it again? YEAH!
This was the first film I ever saw starring Belmondo. That was about six or so years ago. I was hooked. This guy's got charisma in spades. He's like a Bond-type but an approachable/regular guy Bond-type. He's cool, charming, resourceful, deadly...and goofy. He's the French equivalent of...shit. I guess we've never had anyone over here like him. Harrison Ford would be the closest but he's far too good looking to be goofy.
THE PROFESSIONAL is an excellent vehicle for Belmondo, giving him the chance to showcase his seemingly natural comedic and physical abilities. It's a good story with lots of nice moments, plenty of action, light comedy, nice (although repetitious) score by Ennio Morricone and an ending that will keep you guessing until the absolute last moment before the credits roll. Nice.