Hanna is a ruthless teenager with superhuman instincts and intellect. Although her origins are obscured, even to herself, she is keenly aware of the following: that she is being hunted, and it’s time to kill or be killed.
Hanna is a masterfully constructed film. Director Joe Wright peers sympathetically at his eponymous killer, lending her a steady lens and an aesthetic palette. Scenes highlighting her sundry nemeses are contrasted by their shaky, dreadful cinematic treatment. In ways, Wright is more of a DJ than a director — knowing precisely when and how to thrill his audience and doing so with audacity. While there are several throughout the film, one for instance is a scene featuring a thumping underground chase montage that may as well be a trip at the best industrial nightclub to which you weren’t cool enough to be invited.
On the surface, the Hanna narrative is quite simple, leaving most of the surprises to the well choreographed fight scenes. Looking a bit deeper though, I think Hanna’s story is an allegory for the stunted emotional development of kids growing up in our digital age. Those things which have been second nature to humans for eons are being systematically upended, while a new and, “dangerous,” set of skills are surfacing. If Hanna’s, that is, our protagonist’s, bloodlust is satisfied at the end of this film, how should we feel? I don’t think this answer is a simple one.
- Hanna (Wright 2011) @ Century San Francisco Centre 9 & XD