Friday, April 15, 2011


The Flick: Hanna The Actors: Saoirse Ronan, Eric Bana, Cate Blanchett, etc. The Dealio: The movie opens with scenes of an almost gelflinesque, solitary girl, swathed in furs and armed with bow and arrow, slipping through a polar ice scape. Meet Hanna, the central figure in this action-mystery-drama mash-up, and easily the most fascinating of the movie's characters. Turns out, Hanna's father (Bana) is training her- and has been, apparently,from birth. But...for what? Periodically, she states, 'I'm ready.' What follows are even more exercises in sleep-depriving, nerve-jangling survival. Dad sneaks up on Hanna with a gun, flips her over his shoulder, makes her carry a deer miles and miles by herself, etc. Finally, he allows her to make the decision: if she truly feels she is ready for whatever it is she has been training to do, it is up to her to initiate the action. She does, he disappears and we begin a wild, loopy and oft-disconcerting trail through Morocco, Berlin, and the wilds of an unnamed Arctic-area land with few houses. Roads. People. Well, you get the picture. At times reminiscent of Run, Lola, Run, this movie is replete with flashy, jagged camera-action and maze-like pursuits. Will Hanna ever complete her assignment? Will she ever find out what the assignment is? Will she meet her Dad again? Will she get out of the hides-and-skins and orange-jumpsuits which seem to be her only clothing options? Most importantly: will Blanchett ever stop mucking about with her teeth? (Speaking as one who endures a twice-daily dental kabuki, myself, this elevated oral care onto an entirely different, cringe-worth level to which my final response was :Ewwwwww! Just stop it, baby. It's yucky) The Grading Session: 4.71 pengies out of 5. Ronan was riveting and steals every scene in which she appears. Nice supporting actors, too: the jaunty, whistling, lemon-suited assassin, the jaded, ennui-soaked Brit teenager, her happy-hippy family and little bro, utterly under the spell of Hanna- all were remarkably engaging and fun. Lost points on Cate's ever-shifting accents, though. I saw this film in Texas, so the audience judged her attempt to 'do' Texas. And she did succeed...for about 4 minutes. At which time, she seemed to drift off into Mississippi or Alabama, tried on a tight German accent, then hopped aboard an English one. Well. That definitely happened. What next? Lessons Learned: Never let simple geography stand in the way of a compelling story. Plus: sometimes there really can be such a thing as too much dental attentions. Lastly this: never, never, never run into the mouth of a snarling wolf facade in a creepy abandoned Euro amusement park. Not even to save the space program. There is just no percentage for successful outcomes here.

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