First off, a happy Good Friday to all our readers who celebrate it out there, and though it made the pickings today somewhat sparse, I managed to take advantage of the day to get an eyeful of Hanna, which will turn out to be pretty impressive, for the most part.
Hanna takes us out to Finland, where sixteen year old title character Hanna has been living with her father. Her father, meanwhile, has an unusual purpose in mind for his little girl. He’s been training her to be an assassin most of her life. Eventually, Hanna finds herself “ready”, and tells her father the same, kicking off a series of events in which Hanna is picked up by CIA agent Marissa Wiegler, who takes her to a safe house in Morocco. Marissa has a mission: to kill Hanna’s father, as he knows a secret that can’t be made public. But Hanna’s got her own mission: to kill Marissa. Who will kill who? Who will survive? And what does Hanna’s father know that makes him of such interest to the CIA?
One thing that’s clear, even just from the trailers, is that this thing has a lot of action going on in it. That’s plenty clear. And you’ll get a whole lot of wild freaky gymnastics out of the film’s lead, who frankly I don’t even recognize. Indie fans and action fans alike are going to go absolutely bughouse over this one because there’s so much action in it, and from relative unknowns. It took me a stop on the IMDB to finally recognize both Eric Bana and Cate Blanchett
Though sometimes, the action is a little hard to swallow; Saoirse Ronan, the girl playing Hanna, is a little on the preposterous side as she flings herself headlong into action films yet doesn’t quite seem to have mastered how to actually show emotion while she’s doing it. I understand that part of this is related to the plot, but normally, when you’re to the point where you’re kicking a guy in the head, you expect at least a little bit of an angry look. Though it can be said that this is a really masterful move on her part–and frankly, I won’t argue with those who do–I just found it stretching things a bit.
And the worst part is, by the time you get to the end, anyone who cracks a “teenage mutant ninja” joke will actually not be too far off. I hate it when off-color jokes become stark reality.
Still though, Hanna is going to provide a great, and only slightly trippy, action thriller romp that will keep most anyone satisfied. I do, however, find they dropped the ball a bit with the ending by making it not so much end as stop. Normally this is a symptom of survival horror fare in which the world continues on but our look at it is complete, but in an action thriller I do expect a bit more of a defined ending.
These are minor problems to say the least, and easily ninety percent of Hanna is a terrific movie that will bust you in the metaphorical chops, even if it leaves you metaphorically bleeding by the side of the metaphorical road with the ending.
The Screenhead Ten Scale in turn gives Hanna a nine out of ten for being mostly an absolute jewel of action fare, but with a couple of small nicks that keeps it shy of a really great movie.