The movie is as intriguing and eerie as its lead but feels as empty as an easy kill.
A young girl named Hanna is trained by her father Erik to tie loose ends on an unfinished family business. Apart from getting home-schooled with the encyclopedia and a book of Grimm’s fairy tales, Hanna also undergoes rigorous combat training in the wild. Hanna finally decides that she’s ready for the job and finds out the truth about who she is, and what she has been preparing for.
Hanna is an interesting revenge thriller with themes borrowed from a Gothic fairy tale. Instead of an adult agent burned out by the CIA, you have a young girl bred to become the perfect soldier. Soairse Ronan is perfect as the ethereal and multilingual assassin who goes out into the real world on the hunt for the evil witch.
The plot doesn’t take long to take off and with a flick of a switch the movie is set in motion. You get sucked into the momentum of nicely choreographed crisp action scenes. The movie also has some funny moments as Hanna encounters normal life – boys, friendship and family.
The visuals of the film is captivating. There’s a cabin in the snowy woods and an abandoned Grimm inspired amusement park to complete its take on a modern fairy tale.
But while Hanna succeeds as a thriller that will make you regret taking a bathroom break, there’s nothing much beneath the surface.
There’s little characterization. Erik Bana makes the best of what he’s given while Cate Blanchett is over the top (although it worked in one scene in the end). The rest of the characters are cliches.
The narrative is inconsistent. In one scene Hanna is overwhelmed by technology and doesn’t even know what electricity is. But later on she uses the computer and searches the internet without a problem.
With the back story summed up in one line and punched in the middle of the actions scenes, it doesn’t make Hanna’s plight any more relatable and actually cruel. We don’t get anything else out of the movie except a girl brought up and honed to kill.
In the end the movie feels like a cat and mouse chase where the players are nothing beyond the task they were given. But Hanna is still a stylish gripping revenge thriller with a nice soundtrack.
My Rating: 8/10
Alternative Movie Poster by Joe Wright