REVIEW: Hanna

1 10 2013

When the score is the best part of a movie, you know it’s going to be a doozy.  Although to be fair, the score for “Hanna” is composed by The Chemical Brothers – and it is wicked awesome.  If you are a big runner or just like really energetic music to motivate you for whatever life throws your way, then pick up the soundtrack immediately!

Chances are, that soundtrack will be the only lasting impression “Hanna” leaves on the world.  It’s an action-thriller with a tinge of conspiratorial intrigue that comes up just short of everything it hopes to achieve.  Sure, there’s some cool cinematography and neat editing, but everything feels a little more awesome when it’s set to The Chemical Brothers.

No coincidence the movie comes from director Joe Wright, whose career could be summed up in one word: almost.  “Pride and Prejudice” almost worked as a moving Austen adaptation.  “Atonement” almost worked as a sweeping epic of love and forgiveness.  “The Soloist” almost worked as a touching biopic and an exposé of the plight of the Los Angeles homeless.  Jumping ahead, “Anna Karenina” almost worked as an innovative approach to the oft-adapted Tolstoy novel.

In “Hanna,” Wright crafts an ultra-stylish film that’s fun to look at yet falters on an emotional level.  It’s a nuts-and-bolts construction, not a heart-and-soul one.  Pity, because with some care and attention towards the performances and actors, there could have been one heck of a turn from Saoirse Ronan as the titular character.  Ditto Cate Blanchett, the Oscar-winner who could knock any role out of the park.

But as such, “Hanna” is really just there for neat smoke-and-mirrors type of stuff and some nice selections from The Chemical Brothers.  Check out the amazing club sequence from “Black Swan” if you want to hear their beats put to a worthy and compelling scene that will truly haunt you.  C2stars

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One response

19 11 2013
Dan Heaton

I have to disagree with your take on Hanna. The music is great, but I think that fits with the style of the entire film. It’s a sharp thriller that doesn’t lose steam and avoids the tired formula. Wright makes a lot of good choices, particularly with the final scenes at the abandoned theme park.

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