Cult film "The Fifth Element": plot and ending simply explained

03/26/2022 19:45

CHIP editorial team

Milla Jovovich as Leeloo in The Fifth Element.

Imago images / Allstar

"The Fifth Element" is now considered a cult film. Luc Besson created an action-packed and colorful sci-fi adventure starring Bruce Willis and Milla Jovovich. What the five elements are all about and who is interested in them, how this affects the plot and finally the end, we will explain to you in the following article.
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The ultimate evil – pure anti-energy

Egypt 1914: Archaeologist Prof. Pacoli and reporter Billy (Luke Perry) are in the process of deciphering inscriptions on a pyramid when a mysterious priest tries in vain to poison them. He is the guardian of the temple and wants to keep the truth about it secret. Hidden in the temple are five elements that bring victory in the battle against the ultimate evil that appears every 5000 years. The goal of the destructive power: the destruction of all life.

Bruce Willis plays "Korben Dallas"

Imago images / Allstar

Enter the Mondoshawan

Even as the professor tries to interpret the hieroglyphs, an alien race called the Mondoshawan lands nearby. She wants to take the five elements to a different location in the upcoming battle against the ultimate evil, since they no longer think the earth is a safe place. The priest (and his descendants) were given the task of protecting the temple until their return.
Gary Oldman plays the antagonist Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg.

Imago images / United Archives

The Fifth Element: Leeloo

Over 300 years later, in 2259, evil returns and makes its way to earth as a frenzied satellite. It wants to take possession of the stones and wipe out all life. The Mondoshawan know about this and are on their way to bring back the elements so the weapon can be activated in the temple. Still at the territorial space border they are shot down by the Mangalores (a small warrior race). The world seems lost and at the mercy of evil.
But in the rubble, scientists find the biological remains of the fifth element and can reconstruct it: It is the perfect being with the unpronounceable name Leeloo Minai Lekatariba-Lamina-Tchai Ekbat De Sebat, Leeloo (Milla Jovovich) for short.
Disoriented and scared, Leeloo flees and falls into the cab of Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis). Although he cannot understand her, he takes her to the priest Vito Cornelius (Ian Holm) at her request. He is the successor of the former temple keeper and was the liaison to the now slain Mondoshawan.
Director Luc Besson during the shooting of "The Fifth Element".

Imago images / Allstar

Zorg, "Mr. Shadow" and the four stones

Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg (Gary Oldman) is a shady entrepreneur and businessman. With his help, the absolute evil that calls to him under the name Mr. Shadow wants to get possession of the stones and disarm the earth in this way. Zorg, in turn, entrusts the Mangalores with this task. In return, they receive the latest weapons from him. Although they shoot down the Mondoshawan and bring him the box in which the stones are supposed to be, it is empty. The deal between Zorg and the Mangalores falls through. The Mangalores then feel Zorg's anger and (for the time being) retreat, defeated. Zorg is in a tight spot when faced with evil and must now act on his own.

Chris Tucker as Ruby Rhod.

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The journey to the diva Plavalaguna

While Leeloo begins with Cornelius to learn the language of the people and to deal with their history of the past centuries, this learns from Leeloo who actually has the stones. The President of Earth (Thomas Lister Junior) attempts a military offensive against evil. However, this only makes the sphere, which is threateningly approaching the earth, bigger. He is forced to find another way. Vito Cornelius tells him the truth about the stones and the weapon.
Korben Dallas, who had previously served successfully in the military, is then brought back by the President for a secret assignment. By means of a fictitious prize in the competition, he is supposed to travel to Fhloston Paradise (a cruise ship in space) and meet the diva Plavalaguna (Maïwenn Le Besco). She knows where the stones are hidden. Since he already knows Leeloo and the priest from the chance encounter, he knows that she is the fifth element. That's why he takes Leeloo to the cruise ship. Both Cornelius and Zorg are also on their way to becoming a diva.
In the role of the diva: the French actress Maïwenn.

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Revenge of the Mangalore

The diva gives a big concert on the cruise ship. The Mangalores want revenge for their shame and take everyone on the ship hostage. In addition, they now want to get their own hands on the stones and rummage through the diva's cabin. They meet Leeloo, who is willing to fight and who, despite her strength, is badly injured in a fight with them.
The diva Plavalaguna also dies. However, she is able to tell Korben at the last moment where the four element stones are and begs him to take care of Leeloo.
After neither Zorg nor the Mangalores get possession of the stones, they destroy each other by blowing up the ship. The passengers were brought to safety with escape pods.

Ian Holm as Vito Cornelius

Imago images / Allstar

The way to the temple

During the fight on the cruise ship, Korben received involuntary help from the highly eccentric and high-spirited host Ruby Rhod (Chris Tucker). His show became the biggest hit of his career as a result of the events and he became a chaotic sidekick for Korben. Together with the severely injured Leeloo, the priest, his disciple David and the four stones, they fly back to earth in a hijacked spaceship to activate the weapon against the evil that is constantly rushing towards earth.
During this flight, Leeloo re-engages with Earth's history and learns about the human depths of war. In addition to her physical wounds, she is also severely traumatized.

Leeloo is the fifth element.

Imago images / Allstar

Evil freezes

Arriving at the Egyptian temple, everyone builds up the four stones in their respective places. However, they are a bit of a mystery as no one knows how to activate them. Coincidentally, David manages to open the wind element stone with a puff of air. One after the other earth is activated with earth, water with water and fire with fire. Leeloo is close to dying, but is carried between the stones by baskets. Everyone now hopes for the weapon, but nothing happens. How is the fifth element activated?
The President is on live because of Ruby's presence and overhears everything. Evil is only a short distance away from impacting Earth. Leeloo asks Korben why save the earth when there is so much evil on it. He points them to all the good and ultimately to the greatest thing, love. With his love for her, which he confesses to her in this moment, Leeloo – the fifth element – is finally opened and a bright beam of energy from all elements pours out of her into the sky. Evil – the anti-energy – freezes at the last moment.

Korben convinces Leeloo to save humanity.

Imago images / Allstar

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