The Fifth Element is a 1997 science fiction film directed by Luc Besson, starring Bruce Willis, Gary Oldman, Milla Jovovich, Ian Holm, and Chris Tucker. Mostly set during the twenty-third century, the film's central plot involves the survival of humanity, which becomes the duty of a taxicab driver (and former special forces major) named Korben Dallas (Willis) when a young woman (Jovovich) falls into his taxicab. Upon learning of her significance, Korben must join efforts with the girl and a priest (Holm) to recover four mystical stones which are key to defending Earth from an impending attack of pure evil and destruction.
Every five thousand years, in conjunction with a planetary alignment, a 'Great Evil' appears whose purpose is to destroy all life. In preparation for the next appearance in the 23rd century, a group of aliens called the Mondoshawan (pronounced "Mon-do-SHEE-wan") arrive on Earth in 1914 at an ancient tomb that is being excavated, to extract the only weapon capable of defeating the Great Evil, a collection of four stones representing the Classical Elements and the eponymous Fifth Element that conjugates the other four into organic life. After taking the weapons?claiming that they are not safe on Earth, as "war is coming" -- the Mondoshawans present a key to a priest and tell him to pass the information provoking their mission through future generations in preparation for the Evil's arrival.
In 2263, the Great Evil appears and destroys a Federated Army space battleship. When the Mondoshawans attempt to deliver the Elements back to Earth, they are ambushed by another alien race, the shape-shifting Mangalores, who were recently devastated in a conflict with Earth. Federal scientists are able to recover a portion of the Fifth Element and use a reconstitution device to recreate it, whereupon it takes the form of an apparently human woman named "Leeloo" (Milla Jovovich), described as "the perfect being". Leeloo, terrified of her unfamiliar environs, escapes the scientists and arrives in the care of taxi driver Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis), a former major in the Federated Army's Special Forces. Dallas then delivers her to Priest Vito Cornelius (Ian Holm), the current holder of the Mondoshawans' knowledge and his apprentice, David (Charlie Creed-Miles). Dallas, Cornelius, and his acolyte David help Leeloo recover, though Dallas is forced out of Cornelius' apartment before learning her purpose.
Cornelius learns from Leeloo that the four Elements were not carried by the Mondoshawans but instead entrusted to Diva Plavalaguna, a singer currently performing on a luxury space liner at Fhloston Paradise, and that Leeloo must recover the stones from her. Meanwhile, wealthy industrialist Jean-Baptiste Emmanuel Zorg (Gary Oldman) has attempted to gain the stones as urged by communication with the Great Evil. After learning that the Mangalores' attack on the Mondoshawans was unsuccessful in recovering the stones, Zorg betrays and kills them, whereupon the surviving Mangalores decide to seize their revenge and gain the stones for themselves.
General Munro (Brion James), Dallas's former superior officer, appears at Dallas's apartment and tells him that he has been recalled to the Army so he can travel to meet the Diva, because the annual Gemini Croquette Contest has been rigged to allow Dallas to win. The meeting is interrupted by the arrival of Cornelius and Leeloo. Dallas, learning of Leeloo's need, offers to help, but is knocked out by Cornelius, who steals his winning tickets and departs with Leeloo. Dallas accepts the job from Munro and travels to John F. Kennedy Interplanetary Airport, intercepting Cornelius, David, and Leeloo before they board their flight, and escorts Leeloo. The Mangalores and Zorg's assistant are rebuffed by the ticketing agent when they try to pose as Dallas. Cornelius instructs David to prepare the temple and then sneaks aboard the passenger spaceplane before it leaves.
While boarding the flight, Dallas meets interstellar radio personality Ruby Rhod (Chris Tucker), who will be his escort for the trip under the terms of the contest. Upon arrival at Fhloston Paradise, Dallas is taken by Ruby to prepare for the show, while Leeloo waits near the Diva's quarters in order to retrieve the stones from her after her performance. The Diva's show is interrupted by the Mangalores, and the Diva is fatally shot in the stomach. Dallas learns from her dying words that the Diva has hidden the stones inside her body. After she dies, Dallas extracts them, giving them to Ruby to hold as Dallas defeats the Mangalores and saves the rest of the passengers and crew. Leeloo is able to defeat the Mangalores that attempted to ransack the Diva's quarters, but Zorg, having flown himself to Fhloston, shoots at Leeloo at the Diva's quarters, wounding her and forcing her to retreat. This allows him to take the case he believes contains the stones while starting a time bomb. The bomb is detected by the liner's security systems, and an emergency evacuation of its passengers commences. When Dallas goes to recover Leeloo, Zorg finds the case to be empty. Zorg re-enters the abandoned liner just as Dallas, Leeloo, Cornelius, and Ruby leave it on Zorg's ship. Zorg is able to stop his bomb; but one of the defeated Mangalores activates a bomb they brought along, killing Zorg and destroying the liner.
The four return to the temple on Earth as the Great Evil rushes towards the planet. There, Dallas finds Leeloo disillusioned and unwilling to perform her role, having observed that in spite of all efforts made on their behalf, humans seem compelled to destroy themselves. As the protagonists arrange the stones in the temple to form their weapon, they are briefly baffled by their ignorance of the weapon's operation, but David accidentally discovers that each stone is triggered by the presence of the Classical element to which it corresponds (water for the water stone, fire for fire, earth for earth, wind for wind). Dallas then confesses his love for Leeloo, embraces her, and kisses her. At this realization that love is worth saving, Leeloo finds the inspiration to release the weapon's "Divine Light", causing the Great Evil to become dormant as a new moon in Earth's orbit. Later, the President and General Munro go to the reconstitution lab to congratulate Dallas on his successful mission, but he and Leeloo are unavailable, despite the president's assertion that he is in a hurry. Viewers then see he and Leeloo are making love in the resurrection chamber.