18 ago. 2011

My Review: Hanna (8/10)


¨I just missed your heart.¨

Hanna is an action film that really delivers and gives us more than we were expecting without being anything extraordinary. I really enjoyed the freshness of its script and the lead performance from Saoirse Ronan who had already worked with director Joe Wright in the past in Atonement. Wright is also famous for his adaptation of Jane Austen`s novel Pride and Prejudice starring Keira Knightley. Hanna is one of those action films that stands out from the rest of the pack because it feels fresh and original. Seth Lochhead had already written the script way back in 2006 and had received some recognition for his work by being listed in the Black List twice (an annual list that signals out some of the best screenplays that were never produced) until his movie was finally produced and directed by Wright. Yes, the script might have some plot holes here and there, but Ronan`s performance and the action make up for it. The action is almost nonstop and we get to travel across different locations as we experience one chase after another. The fighting scenes are pretty well choreographed and the supporting cast is also interesting. Hanna is not your typical action film, it is different and kind of hard to predict. At first it is difficult to understand what is going on, but as the story develops we get to piece together the mystery and uncover the past. Hanna also works because we have a rather unconventional heroine who can really bring it. Joe Wright found the perfect person in Saoirse Ronan for the role.

I don’t want to give too much of the plot away because this is one of those movies that the less you know about the better. I will only mention some of the characters and general storylines and let the viewer piece the story together as they watch the film on their own. Hanna (Saoirse Ronan) has spent her entire childhood and adolescent life undergoing special training somewhere in the middle of a forest in Finland far from all civilization. Her father has spent his life training and educating her so that she be ready for a very important mission. He has turned Hanna into a perfect killing machine because he claims there is someone who wants to kill her. Hanna`s father, Erik (Eric Bana), decides to train her and prepare her for her encounter with this person named Marissa (Cate Blanchett). When Hanna feels ready Erik lets her go on the mission and the chase begins across various locations beginning in Morocco and ending in Germany. Marissa isn’t the only one after Hanna, she has help from Isaacs (Tom Hollander) and some of his friends. Hanna on the other hand befriends another girl named Sophie (Jessica Barden) and she and her family are the first people she`s ever had a relationship outside of her father. Olivia Williams plays the mother, Rachel, while Jason Flemyng is the father, Sebastian. Hanna discovers she isn`t actually a normal girl and decides to search for answers while facing off with Marissa and Isaacs who are after her.

The soundtrack of the film is by The Chemical Brothers, who aren’t actually among my favorite bands, but they have a very different style of music which worked perfectly with this very different kind of action film. Beside Ronan`s performance which I have already signaled out, I have to say Eric Bana does a pretty decent job playing her father and Blanchett does the same playing the nemesis although we`ve seen them before in better roles. Tom Hollander plays a really weird character in this film and I really wasn’t interested in his character. As for the technical aspect of the film it was beautifully shot and edited. The action was pretty well developed and I enjoyed watching the story unfold as the movie moved on. Joe Wright has directed a very different film from what he has made in the past, but he did a great job with Hanna. By the end of the year I will probably still remember this film because it`s one of those movies that sticks with you for being entertainingly awkward. Midway through the year I can say it is one of the better action movies I`ve seen this year, but not nearly as close to being anything extraordinary. It’s no masterpiece, but it works nonetheless. Saoirse Ronan has an interesting future ahead of her and she`s proven that her excellent work in Atonement was no one-time thing; she can really bring it considering the strong physicality this role required and she delivered. This is one movie you won’t want to miss.

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