The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: Universal - 2011
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 111 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French DTS 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Eric Bana, Cate Blanchett, Tom Hollander, Olivia Williams, Jason Flemyng
Directed by: Joe Wright
Music by: The Chemical Brothers
Written by: Seth Lochhead & David Farr
Region Code: A,B,C
Blu-ray Disc release Date: September 6, 2011
"Adapt or die"
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). As she nears her ultimate target, Hanna faces startling revelations about her existence.
Hanna (Saoirse Ronan), a 16-year-old girl raised in the desolate, icy wilds of Finland by her father Erik, a rogue CIA agent, is trained to become the perfect assassin. Every moment of Hanna's childhood and adolescence has been spent building up the strength, stamina and survival instincts she needs to prepare for the day she must strike out on her own. That day has now come; armed with the skills her father has imparted to her and the mantra adapt or die, Hanna must cross Europe and face her family's longtime enemy, lethal intelligence operative Marissa Wiegler.
Hanna is pretty much exactly what it appears to be. I wouldn't exactly describe it as a high octane thriller but its carried by a decent script, stylish action and a solid cast. I like the concept and the character of Hanna is perfectly drawn as the lethal weapon type who sees the world through the eyes of youthful innocence while possessing the ass kicking skills of an assassin. This is the third film I have seen Saoirse Ronan in and she continues to impress me. Her performance is what truly sells this film. The script hit's the high points but I would have preferred that the story had been fleshed out a bit more. I appreciated the depth given to Hanna's desire for friendship/family, her inquisitive innocence, and her innate need for answers. This was essential to creating the definitive contrast that made her so dangerous when provoked/assigned and fun to watch when engaged. The primary focus remained there and with her contact with a traveling family while the bare minimum was revealed about the whys and wherefores of her beginnings. I found that to be a little frustrating only because I think it would have provided deeper emphasis on the remaining integral elements, namely Hanna's father Erik, and their nemesis Marissa Weigler (pronounced Veigler). Here, they are portrayed as typical CIA archetypes although we get enough of Weigler to ensure that she is clearly defined as the heavy. In that regard Cate Blanchett doesn't disappoint, not surprising as she can play just about any role with credibility. There is easily enough intrigue to keep interest high while the action proves rewarding and features well executed hand to hand fight style choreography. So, is Hanna worth 111 minutes of your time? The answer is most definitely. I wouldn't say that it breaks new ground but it has style and offers genre fans an engaging character that we may likely hear from again.
The rating is for intense sequences of violence and action, some sexual material and language.
AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65
**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Low frequency extension:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Black level/Shadow detail:
- Color reproduction:
Hanna comes to Blu-ray Disc from Universal Studios HE featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 34 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.6 Mbps.
This is a great looking new release title from Universal. Images onscreen exhibit plenty of fine rendering and crisp definition that on occasion rises to higher levels especially during close ups which can be very revealing. Long range shots appear resolute with good dimensional depth and notable object detail. The film's beautiful geographic locations and vista views look magnificent in high definition. Bright exterior segments are punchy with crisp dynamic whites and appreciable texture. Colors aren't overly engaging as the palette is limited to sepia tones and drab secondary hues that don't offer much to catch the eye. Rendering is excellent though and the balance is kept in proper focus which mates well with the films overall visual perspective. Fleshtones are tonally divergent and appear lifelike in depiction. Blacks are respectable and shadow detail is revealing of appreciable levels of delineation in dark backgrounds and low lighting. I didn't detect any deleterious artifacts or other video related anomalies.
The lossless DTS-HD Master Audio surround mix does a great job rendering the film's soundtrack. Dialogue has excellent intonation and clarity which allows even subtle changes in vocal pitch to be appreciable. This is a well balanced audio presentation that quite often engages the entire system. Dynamic range is excellent and the soundstage has an open expression that allows its elements to extend well into the room. Discrete rear channel activity isn't extensive however the action based elements provide an enriching level of immersion which is generated by a seamless sound field. The chase and extended fight sequences are empowered by near field sound effects, robust dynamics and thumping techno rhythms that energize the room. The LFE channel is frequently active and reproduces the film's music and extended lower bass frequencies with palpably rich impact.
- Feature commentary with director Joe Wright
- (HD) Alternate ending
- (HD) Deleted scenes - 3 minutes
- (HD) Adapt or die - 13 minute making of featurette
- (HD) Central Intelligence Agency allegory - 9 minute featurette
- (HD) Anatomy of a scene: The escape from Camp G - 3 minutes
- (HD) The world of Hanna - 2 minute promotional feature
- (HD) Hanna promo - 1 minute
- My scenes bookmark feature
- pocket BLU
- D-Box Motion Code enable
- Digital Copy
Watching the trailer for Hanna gives the impression that it is an engaging action/thriller built upon an unoriginal but potentially well executed concept. It turned out to be exactly that, thanks to a decent script, capable direction and rock solid performances by the cast, most notably Saoirse Ronan in the title role. It makes its way onto Blu-ray Disc featuring top notch audio/video quality and an above average assortment of bonus supplements most of which contain more fluff than substance but are worth checking out if you enjoyed the film. Hanna's combination of intrigue, action and style make it the perfect choice for genre fans looking for a fix. Enjoy!
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