Being with Callaghan has taught me to see things in new ways. Like action flicks. If not for him, I’d never think to ask myself: “How bad is this movie on a Luc Besson scale of 1-10?”
As a French person, he’s sensitive to Luc Besson. Or, should I say, he’s not sensitive so much as he’s annoyed by Luc Besson.
I listen for his comments when we’re watching action movies. If he starts grumbling about Luc Besson, I know that he’s annoyed. That’s because Luc Besson is the yardstick Callaghan uses to measure his opinion of the movie’s worth, even if Luc Besson had nothing to do with the movie.
This morning, I asked him to summarize his feelings about Luc Besson. I actually recorded his answer. Verbatim:
“Hmm. Luc Besson. Alors. His movies are too easy. I mean, the stories. The resolution of the problems. It’s always, like, ‘Oh! Everything’s fine now. She turned into an intergalactic f*cking cloud of black matter, so everything’s fine’.”
Some comments I’ve heard from him while watching action flicks, or while talking about them:
10). “Putain, the person who did this movie was influenced by Luc Besson.”
9). “This could’ve been a great movie, but Luc Besson.”
8). “The CGI is cheesy. It’s Luc Besson.”
7). “Luc Besson outdid himself with Valerian!! I had to stop after a half-hour. It was bad, it was SO BAD, it was the quintessential Luc Besson movie.” (Yes, Callaghan knows the word “quintessential.” No, I wasn’t with him when he watched Valerian. He shared this opinion with me afterward.)
6). “Ugh, this movie has that Luc Besson vibe.”
5). “Taxi was ridiculous, and Luc Besson made three of that!!”
4). “You can tell Luc Besson was involved in this.”
3). “Dobermann was good because it wasn’t Luc Besson. If it was Luc Besson doing the same movie, it would be ridiculous.”
2). “The Family. That was a stupid movie. Luc Besson.”
And his #1 general comment, applicable to any action flick that annoys him:
“ET VOILA. LUC BESSON.”
Sidenote: This post is rather a tribute to Luc Besson. Love him or not, he’s an iconic filmmaker. Two of his films are on my list of all-time favorites: The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc, and La Femme Nikita (1990). Callaghan likes those movies, too, as well as The Fifth Element.