Brace yourselves, kiddies.
There is something extraordinary about Cate Blanchet, and I am almost ashamed that I cannot identify it. She is mysterious, powerful, and a performer talented beyond measure. I challenge you to find someone who can equal her in her vast arsenal of skills. Of course, limiting you to mere mortals makes the challenge futile.
The story of Hanna itself is interesting, beguiling to follow, and yet unremarkable. A genetically engineered soldier, nearly perfect in strength, tactics, and cunning (yes, the cliché hammer just slammed into the side of my head). Buffy meets Universal Soldier, (UGH, I just vomited in my mouth a bit, thinking of the latter). While Seth Lochhead and David Farr have done pretty decent work to differentiate themselves from those of similar material, it is the stunning visual presentations of scenery and sets which, coupled with a handful of enthusiastically entertaining, if not mesmerizing, performances that will satisfy your demand for continual stimulation and prevent you from popping another Prozac or Adderall until the credits roll.
Eric Bana does a fine job in his portrayal of Hanna's father, although his speech or linguistics coach was perhaps under too short of a contract. That said, his presence and performance contribute to the domain of this film which draws you in like an inescapable trap. (Disclaimer: I am a big fan of Bana's work in the action genre). The fight scenes are brilliantly balanced between anxiety and grace (or lack thereof). Bana's character is the exceptional operator of yesterday, and Hanna is the excruciatingly-extraordinary specialist of tomorrow.
Olivia Williams dominates the supporting cast. Someone who has the potential to subtly draw you in, and then stun you with a performance so graceful, so quietly blinding, that it momentarily paralyzes the human mind. Her presence is not one to be underestimated. If you buy this DVD or Blu-Ray sight unseen and find it unpalatable, give me a shout, and I'll take it off your hands for a song. And dance. (This offer limited to Cancer Omega and Lyger's pet bunny Mestophales).
As of this writing, the tomatometer over at Rotten Tomatoes has this at 71%, which seems fair. I would have expected more film critics to get their shorts in a knot about this film. It is a visually-stunning, heart-pounding, action-packed, family-shredding film well-worth seeing. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.
Forget the damn critics. Rent Hanna today, and immerse yourself in the spectacle of one little girl's violent and extraordinary journey into her future.
4/5 - Oh hell yes.
5/5: Drop everything and go see it today
4/5: Definitely worth seeing in theaters
3/5: Easily worth the price of the matinee
2/5: Last choice at Blockbuster
1/5: Keep your money, stay home & channel surf
Author's note: I failed to comment on the Chemical Brothers' score, which rocks and contributes a great deal to the heart-pounding experience. Thanks to David C. for pointing this out.
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