Picks and Pans Review: Point of No Return

updated 04/05/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 04/05/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Bridget Fonda, Gabriel Byrne, Anne Bancroft, Dermot Mulroney, Harvey Keitel

At the beginning of this crass, maladroit remake of the critically acclaimed 1990 French movie La Femme Nikita, Fonda is definitely not the kind of girl you'd want to bring home to Mother. A drugged-out, gun-wielding sociopath, she would blow Mom away as soon as look at her. Condemned to die for killing a cop, Fonda, hair and mouth in a snarl, gets an 11th-hour reprieve when she is tapped to join a covert governmental agency trafficking in high-tech assassination. Fonda at first signals her reluctance by grabbing a gun and trying to shoot her way out. Eventually, though, she is won over by a sympathetic operative (Byrne) and takes karate class and target practice, plus lessons in grooming from agency tastemaker Bancroft. Polished and deadly, a sort of My Fair Hit Lady, Fonda is given a new identity and sent out into the world to wait for her first assignment. Then she falls in love with a photographer (Mulroney) and begins to feel the full weight of a double life. But while La Femme Nikita was stylish and satiric, Point of No Return is determinedly stylized, cartoonish and often reminiscent of a Charlie's Angels episode. (R)

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