A young girl (Saoirse Ronan) has been raised in the wilderness by her father (Eric Bana) and trained in hand-to-hand combat. But now it’s time for her to enter the real world, and uncover the truth about who she really is.
The film is superbly directed by Joe Wright with an energy to rival Run Lola Run or Premium Rush. The camera just about keeps up with our energetic protagonist, whirling and twirling with her as she makes her journey around the world.
It benefits from well-drawn characters including Hanna herself, with Ronan finding a delicate balance between detached fish-out-of-water and likeable protagonist. Also excellent are precocious teen Sophie (Jessica Barden), Hanna’s first real friend, and her family; intellectual hippy-type mum (Olivia Williams), long-suffering dad (Jason Flemyng) and younger brother (Aldo Maland).
Cate Blanchett gives an excellent performance as Marissa, the chief spook on Hanna’s case, once again showing she makes a great villain, as she did in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Thor: Ragnarok.
The globe-trotting story prefers visual interest to geographic coherence, with striking imagery such as a house full of giant mushrooms which are suspended from the ceiling like psychedelic stalactites, and a final sequence which takes place in a real-life disused theme park to give The Lady from Shanghai a run for its money. The result is a fun, lively and engrossing thriller with a surprising sci-fi streak.