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MOVIE REVIEW: Hanna

If you liked Salt, you'll love this

  • Saoirse Ronan as Hanna in "Hanna."
  • Saoirse Ronan as Hanna in "Hanna."
  • Saoirse Ronan as Hanna in "Hanna."
  • Saoirse Ronan as Hanna in "Hanna."
  • Eric Bana as Erik Heller in "Hanna."
  • Cate Blanchett as Marissa Wiegler in "Hanna."
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Director Joe Wright didn’t get this right. At a screening in Mission Valley, he told the audience it was the first screenplay he wrote. I could tell. He started off so promising in his career, moving from videos and working with bands, to giving us Atonement as well as Pride and Prejudice. He had a misstep with The Soloist, and I was hoping Hanna would be a step back in the right direction.

The things he got right were the cinematography and various landscapes the film was shot in. We see some interesting shots in Finland – snow capped mountains, forests, and amusing houses. I also liked the fact that he didn’t show all of Hanna’s training in flashbacks. That’s been done to death.

Instead, the movie starts off with Eric Bana (Funny People) as an ex-CIA agent training this little femme Nikita, kick-ass girl. It’s about the 10 minute mark into the movie where I knew I wouldn’t care for this.

Bana has a red button that can be pressed when Hanna (played well by Saoirse Ronan of Lovely Bones) feels she’s ready to fight people that would be interested in killing her. That would include Cate Blanchett as a CIA agent, and a bunch of guys with guns.

This movie has a lot in common with Salt from last year. The stunts and action are filmed well, but the story is ridiculous and doesn’t make sense.

In both movies, authorities were alerted to who and where these females were. Why? So they’d have to fight and get by everyone to escape? Why didn’t Bana just refuse to press this red button?

He trained this girl, and if she feels ready to take on the world, let her. I’m guessing the CIA would’ve just thought she was dead; or at the very least, they wouldn’t have a clue as to where they should start looking for her.

Another similarity with Salt is the fact that these kids were chosen because they were bred specifically for their genetic intelligence and strength, making them the perfect killing machines.

The music in this was annoying. This is the fourth movie in a year and half that’s used music from Swan Lake. Second, a moratorium on techno music. When movies do it, it seems to be done every five minutes. It’s cool they got the Chemical Brothers to score the film, but their electronica got repetitive. One chase scene with it would’ve been perfect.

I’m getting sick and tired of sci-fi movies being done lately with such faulty logic – and critics still praising them (Source Code). If Source Code would’ve had Nicolas Cage instead of Jake Gyllenhaal, critics would’ve panned it. Since Hanna is an indie/foreign film that’s an action thriller, it’s going to be praised. It shouldn’t be. Any critic that praises this can’t complain when Hollywood churns out the next Vin Diesel picture.

There was a hotel scene that was interesting. I was reminded of Tom Hanks in Big, when he’s scared staying in a hotel for the first time. And all of the stunts and shooting sequences were done well enough.

This movie wasted the talents of Olivia Williams (An Education).

It gets a D.