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The Independent Culture
Release schedules are undeniably London-centric. But the coming fortnight permits the rest of the country to sit at the grown-ups' table too: Barcelona, Amateur and Patrice Chereau's captivating epic La Reine Margot all filter north, variously to Glasgow, Bradford and Newcastle. Manchester's Cornerhouse precedes a run of the brilliant Suture with two other lost-identity thrillers: Samuel Fuller's Shock Corridor and John Frankenheimer's Seconds (both today only).

Luc Besson's Leon is uneven and gratuitously violent. But it has many plusses: the intense Jean Reno (above) as a lonely hit-man; newcomer Natalie Portman as the sassy smart-talker who seeks his help; Gary Oldman impersonating Dennis Hopper; and some bright-eyed photography. It's the first time since his debut The Last Battle that Besson has displayed a hint of heart. It goes nationwide from tomorrow.

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