Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

Hanna (Blu-ray)

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
4 out of 10
Extras Rating:
7 out of 10
Movie Details:
View here

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Rating: PG-13

Starring:
Saoirse Ronan as Hanna
Eric Bana as Erik
Vicky Krieps as Johanna Zadek
Cate Blanchett as Marissa Wiegler
Tom Hollander as Isaacs
Olivia Williams as Rachel
Jason Flemyng as Sebastian
Jessica Barden as Sophie
Aldo Maland as Miles
Michelle Dockery as False Marissa
John MacMillan as Lewis
Tim Beckmann as Walt
Jamie Beamish as Burton
Sebastian Hülk as Titch
Joel Basman as Razor
Álvaro Cervantes as Feliciano
Marc Soto as Feliciano's Brother
Gudrun Ritter as Katrin Zadeck
Martin Wuttke as Knepfler

Directed by Joe Wright

Special Features:
Alternate Ending
Deleted Scenes
Anatomy of a Scene: The Escape from Camp G
Feature Commentary with Director Joe Wright
Adapt or Die
Central Intelligence Allegory
Chemical Reaction
The Wide World of Hanna

Other Info:
Widescreen (2.40:1)
DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 Sound
French and Spanish Language
French and Spanish Subtitles
Running Time: 1 Hour 51 Minutes

The Details:
The following is the official description of the film:

"An action-packed suspense-thriller starring Academy Award nominee Saoirse Ronan ('Atonement,' 'The Lovely Bones').

Raised by her father (Eric Bana) an ex-CIA agent in the wilds of Finland, Hanna's upbringing and training have been one and the same all geared to making her the perfect assassin. The turning point in her adolescence is a sharp one. Sent into the world by her father on a mission, Hanna journeys stealthily across Europe eluding agents dispatched after her by a ruthless intelligence operative with secrets of her own (Academy Award winner Cate Blanchett).

"Hanna" is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some sexual material and language.

Mini-Review:
I missed "Hanna" in theaters so I was eager to check it out on Blu-ray. I like Eric Bana, Cate Blanchett, and Saoirse Ronan a lot, so I figured that any movie they were in had to be entertaining. Plus I was in the mood for a spy thriller starring a teenage girl. So I was a bit surprised when I didn't like "Hanna."

The movie starts out strong enough. We see Erik training Hanna in survival skills for some unknown confrontation in the near future. It's an intriguing setup. But then as the movie progresses, it gets more and more surreal. Hanna is dragged to weird locations, she wanders through Morocco and Spain, and along the way she meets a wide variety of bizarre characters. The film gets even more freakish with the introduction of Tom Hollander as Isaacs. He's a bizarre, track suit wearing, effeminate assassin. As the story gets more and more trippy, you start realizing that director Joe Wright is trying to imitate the style of Luc Besson, but the end result falls way short. It ends up being a European style spy thriller, but not a very effective one.

After the movie is over and you start picking apart the story, you start realizing just how many plot holes there are in it. Erik is supposed to be a super-spy, yet instead of trying to kill Marissa himself, he sends Hanna to do it. It seems irresponsible and cowardly. Erik also spends all of his time teaching Hanna about fighting, weapons, and scientific factoids, yet when she's thrown into the real world she's amazed by television, she's amazed by the sight of an airplane, she eats like a caveman, she can barely carry on a conversation with a normal human being, and she's distracted by boys and her fellow teenage girls. She hardly seems like she's had complete training to be the ultimate killer. And as Marissa is trying to hunt down Hanna and Erik, she's portrayed as the ultimate hunter. Yet who does she hire as henchmen? The aforementioned track suit wearing weirdo driving a clown car with a couple of his buddies. They hardly seem like a threat.

Overall, "Hanna" moves at a glacial pace, the good acting doesn't overcome the weak script, and it seems pretentious in a way only a European thriller can. Unless you're a fan of art house fare or European films, "Hanna" isn't quite the action movie that American audiences look for. You may like Joe Wright's other films like "The Soloist", "Atonement" or "Pride & Prejudice" better.

You'll find a decent selection of bonus features on the Blu-ray. There is an alternate ending, but it's not all that different from the theatrical version. It just shows Hanna returning to the cabin in Finland from the opening. There are also a few deleted scenes, some brief 'making of' videos, and a commentary. "Chemical Reaction" features the Chemical Brothers who scored the film. I can't say I was a big fan of the music, either.

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