“Hanna” and the soundtrack by The Chemical Brothers

Image credit: Focus Features

The TV is obliquely behind my study table and, when it is on, I can’t see the screen when I am in front of my computer. Normally, sound doesn’t bother me (motion does), it doesn’t prevent me from being able to work so the TV can be on all day and I can happily work away.

So, Speedy was watching something on HBO HD, made a comment (some actress from Downton Abbey being in the movie he was watching), I glanced casually and went back to reading The Boston Globe. Then, something caught my ear. Maybe, it was the music. I’m not sure. But there are sounds that make me pause. Not necessarily loud, not necessarily eerie, just sounds that, well, sound different from the ordinary.

Whatever it was that I heard made me pause, glance at the TV screen and ask Speedy what the title of the movie was. Ha-na, he said. I searched Google for “Hannah”, got Bible-related results and I was sure I got the spelling wrong. No “h” at the end, Speedy said, and I searched again. I reached the Wikipedia article, read the first two sentences, ditched The Boston Globe, moved to the couch and watched Hanna.

Cate Blanchett, Eric Bana and Saoirse Ronan, the girl from The Lovely Bones. The plot is a sort of updated Firestarter. Pregnant woman joins a CIA experiment, the DNA of the embryo is manipulated to produce a super soldier, CIA loses mother and child, child disappears for years until, at her own initiative, she makes contact with the CIA.

I have one word to describe the film: Fantastic. Some reviews talk about its unique quality as a successful mixing of genres (thriller, dark fantasy and fairy tale), I don’t know enough movie speak to write about Hanna in that vein. I only know that the action was heart-thumping, the acting was superb and the music was so good I could feel the pulse at the side of my head leaping with excitement.

I would learn later that Hanna was directed by Joe Wright, the man who did Pride and Prejudice and Atonement, both of which I adored with a capital A. His most recent work is Anna Karenina (with Keira Knightley) and I anticipate seeing it very soon.

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There's more to movies and TV shows than the story and the characters. Sometimes, the jewelry and costumes are the real stars.

Except for quotes, stock photos and screen grabs, all text & images © Connie Veneracion. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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