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Bob: You died Saturday at 5:00 p.m. The prison doctor confirmed suicide after an overdose of tranquillizers. You're buried in Maisons-Alfort, row 8, plot 30. ...I work, let's say, for the government. We've decided to give you another chance.
Nikita: What do I do?
Bob: Learn. Learn to read, walk, talk, smile and even fight. Learn to do everything.
Nikita: What for?
Bob: To serve your country.
Nikita: What if I don't want to?
Bob: Row 8, Plot 30.
Nikita (Anne Parillaud) is a young junkie who (along with her friends) holds up a pharmacy and ends up killing a police officer. She's sent to prison and finally sentenced to death via lethal injection. Strapped down to a chair, she's injected...and wakes up to another life. A life working for a shadowy government agency. She will be taught how to kill, how to be a lady, how to be a spy, all in the service of her country.
Tropes included in this film are:
- Ax Crazy: Victor the Cleaner. His idea of salvaging an operation gone wrong is simply to shoot as many people as possible.
- And he only gets worse when he suffers a Villainous Breakdown.
- Bathroom Break Out
- Bittersweet Ending
- Boxed Crook: Everyone who works for Division basically.
- Career Killers
- Cold Sniper: In one memoral scene, Nikita has a conversiation with her boyfriend and then carefully snipes a target from within the bathroom of their hotel suite.
- Contract on the Hitman
- Determinator: Victor the Cleaner. He doesn't give up, period. Which gets him killed.
- The Dog Shot First: If you just know the tv show, then you'll think Nikita was wrongly framed for murder. In the movie, she isn't.
- Femme Fatale
- Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Victor the Cleaner.
- Impaled Palm: Nikita does this to a policeman early in the film.
- One-Scene Wonder: Jean Reno as the creepy Victor.
- Pistol Pose: One of the posters.
- Spiritual Successor: The character of Victor the Cleaner has a spiritual successor in the later Luc Besson movie Leon (although Leon is more sympathetic).
- The Un-Smile: When Nikita is told to smile.
- Woman in Black: Nikita herself. A straight example and a subversion at the same time.