The Fifth Element (1997) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Fifth Element (1997)



Critic Consensus: Visually inventive and gleefully over the top, Luc Besson's The Fifth Element is a fantastic piece of pop sci-fi that never takes itself too seriously.

The Fifth Element Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

Good and evil battle for the future of 23rd century Earth in this visually striking big-budget science fiction epic. In the movie's prologue, which is set in 1914, scientists gather in Egypt at the site of an event that transpired centuries earlier. Aliens, it seemed, arrived to collect four stones representing the four basic elements (earth, air, fire and water) - warning their human contacts that the objects were no longer safe on Earth. A few hundred years later (in the 23rd century), a huge ball of molten lava and flame is hurtling toward Earth, and scientist-holy man Victor Cornelius (Ian Holm) declares that in order to prevent it from destroying the planet, the same four elemental stones must be combined with the fifth element, as embodied by a visitor from another world named Leeloo (Milla Jovovich). However, if the force of evil presents itself to the stones instead, the Earth will be destroyed, and an evil being named Zorg (Gary Oldman) will trigger the disaster. Despite her remarkable powers, Leeloo needs help with her mission, and she chooses her accomplice, military leader-turned-cab driver Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis), when she literally falls through the roof of his taxi. Writer and director Luc Besson began writing the script for The Fifth Element when he was only 16 years old, though he was 38 before he was able to bring it to the screen. ~ Mark Deming, Rovimore
Rating: PG-13 (For intense sci-fi violence, some sexuality and brief nudity.)
Genre: Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By: Luc Besson, Robert Mark Kamen
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 9, 1997
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment


Bruce Willis
as Korben Dallas
Ian Holm
as Cornelius
Chris Tucker
as Ruby Rhod
Brion James
as Gen. Munro
Tommy 'Tiny' Lister
as President Lindberg
as Right Arm
John Neville
as Gen. Staedert
John Bluthal
as Prof. Pacoli
Richard Leaf
as Neighbour
Julie T. Wallace
as Major Iceborg
Al Matthews
as General Tudor
Ivan Heng
as Left Arm
Sonita Henry
as President's Aide
Tim McMullan
as Scientist's Aide
Hon Ping Tang
as Munro's Captain
George Khan
as Head Scientist
John Hughes
as Head of Military
Justin Lee Burrows
as Mondoshawan
Richard Ashton
as Mondoshawan
Jerome Blake
as Mondoshawan
Kevin Molloy
as Mondoshawan/Ground C...
Bill Reimbold
as Mactilburgh's Assist...
Colin Brooks
as Staedert's Captain
Anthony Chinn
as Mactilburgh's Techni...
Sam Douglas
as Chief NY Cop
Roger Monk
as Flying Cop/Military ...
David Kennedy
as Flying Cop
David Barrass
as Flying Cop
Mac MacDonald
as Flying Cop
Jean-Luc Caron
as Flying Cop
Riz Meedin
as Flying Cop
Jerry Ezekiel
as Flying Cop
Indra Ove
as VIP Stewardess
Nicole Merry
as VIP Stewardess
Stacey McKenzie
as VIP Stewardess
Rachel Willis
as Stewardess
Genevieve Maylam
as Stewardess
Josie Perez
as Stewardess
Natasha Brice
as Stewardess
Sophia Goth
as Check-In Attendant
Martin McDougall
as Warship Captain
Peter Dunwell
as Diva's Manager
Stewart Harvey-Wilso...
as Ruby Rhod Assistant
Dave Fishley
as Ruby Rhod Assistant
Carlton Chance
as Ruby Rhod Assistant
Gin Clarke
as Diva's Assistant
Vladimir McCrary
as Human Aknot
Clifton Lloyd-Bryan
as Mangalore Aknot/Airp...
Aron Paramor
as Mangalore Akanit
Alan Ruscoe
as Mangalore Kino
Eve Salvail
as Tawdry Girl
Kaleem Janjua
as Shuttle Pilot
Tyrone Tyrell
as Shuttle Co-Pilot
Kevin Brewerton
as Shuttle Mechanic
Vince Pellegrino
as Ground Crew
Ian Beckett
as Baby Ray
Sonny Caldinez
as Emperor Kodar Japhet
Zeta Graff
as Princess Achen
Eddie Ellwood
as Roy Von Bacon
as Fhloston Hostess
Laura De Palma
as Fhloston Hostess
Michael Culkin
as Hefty Man
Lenny McLean
as Police Chief
Robert Oates
as Fhloston Commander
John Sharian
as Fhloston Captain
Fred Williams
as Hotel Manager
Sibyl Buck
as Zorg's Secretary
Grant James
as Scientist
Ali Yassine
as Scientist
Sean Buckley
as Scientist
Dane Messam
as Military Technician
Nathan Hamlett
as Military Technician
Cecil Cheng
as Military Technician
Scott Woods
as Lab Guard
Leon Dekker
as Lab Guard
David Garvey
as Staedert's Technicia...
Stanley Kowalski
as Staedert's Technicia...
Omar Hibbert William...
as Staedert's Technicia...
Robert Clapperton
as Robot Barman
Robert Alexander
as Warship Technician
Mia Frye
as TV Stewardess
Leo Williams
as Power Operator
Keith Martin
as Power Operator
J.D. Dawodu
as Zorg's Man
Patrick Nicholls
as Zorg's Man
Shaun Davis
as Zorg's Man
Roy Garcia Singh
as Zorg's Man
Alex Georgijev
as Zorg's Man
Marie Guillard
as Burger Assistant
Stina Richardson
as Burger Assistant
Renee Montemayor
as Burger Assistant
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News & Interviews for The Fifth Element

Critic Reviews for The Fifth Element

All Critics (61) | Top Critics (13)

In this movie and many like it, the only elements that count are impact, impact, impact and impact. The fifth element is gibberish.

Full Review… | July 14, 2014
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic

A hodgepodge of elements that don't comfortably coalesce.

Full Review… | September 4, 2008
Top Critic

Besson's futuristic fable is flawed by a messy narrative which strains to incorporate far too many grotesque and eccentric characters.

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

The Fifth Element has to be the most creative visualization since Tim Burton's first Batman in 1989. On top of that, it's a whole lot of fun.

Full Review… | June 18, 2002
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Luc Besson's The Fifth Element is a dazzling, funny, and exciting sci-fi actioner that features unforgettable characters and a thrilling story, making this one of the most underrated science-fiction classics around.

Full Review… | November 17, 2015

A jaw-dropping, mind-blowing pop epic that gives you everything from the slam-bang sci-fi fantasy of Star Wars to the inspired slapstick lunacy of The Marx Brothers

Full Review… | July 19, 2014
The Moving Picture Show

Audience Reviews for The Fifth Element


There is something amusing about the way it embraces camp but Besson crosses the line into goofy, ridiculous flamboyance with an insufferable Chris Tucker, an over-the-top Gary Oldman overacting insanely and a really preposterous plot that makes impossible any suspension of disbelief.

Carlos MagalhŃes

Super Reviewer


It's the weirdest, coolest futuristic movie I've ever seen. The story is pretty cool and Gary Oldman is especially cool as the arch-villain. It's rare to find a sci-fi movie like this anymore. Bruce Willis is of course the go-to action king of films.

Wildaly M

Super Reviewer


Subtlety is most definitely not the order of the day in Luc Besson's high camp space opera, and it's scattershot approach does mean there are a few things about it I don't appreciate. The soundtrack is occasionally horrendous, Jean Paul Gaultier's insistence (as usual) on dressing half the male cast up as the off Broadway chapter of the Erasure fan club, and most of all, Chris Tucker who is so irritating it makes my teeth hurt. What makes the film work is it's sense of humour which permeates the entire proceedings and it's breakneck pace that means it never dwells too long on any particular aspect of the story. There are some great action sequences, cool Gilliam-esque production design, and loads of funny moments, mostly supplied by Gary Oldman who steals every scene he is in as a kind of psychotic southern sci fi version of Terry-Thomas. Silly, tongue in cheek and hugely entertaining.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

The Fifth Element Quotes

– Submitted by Jazen H (15 months ago)
– Submitted by Jazen H (15 months ago)
– Submitted by Jazen H (15 months ago)
– Submitted by Jazen H (15 months ago)

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