Anna Movie Review: Singeing the same old tune
Like in most of Luc Besson's movies, the camerawork is dramatic and the action sharply violent. But there's nothing new to appreciate. This spy movie is rather like old wine in a new bottle.
U/A: Action, Thriller
Cast: Sasha Luss, Helen Mirren, Luke Evans, Cillian Murphy, Lera Abova, Alexander Petrov, Nikita Pavlenko, Anna Krippa
Director: Luc Besson
Luc Besson's revisit to the world of action and espionage thrums with a racy tempo, agile momentum and razor sharp action but the complexities inherent here are so confusing that it doesn't make for a compelling experience. Sasha Luss re-teams with her Valerian director, Luc Besson, to play a mild-mannered, strikingly beautiful model who transforms into a feared government assassin.
Luc Besson hasn't had an easy run at the worldwide Box-office - what with Lucy, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, and The Family, losing steam soon after their release. Given the 'MeToo' complications 'Anna' was embroiled in, coupled with almost zero promotions and a much delayed limited release, not much was expected from this thriller. But that's not to say that Luc's armoire of thrills is lost in entirety. In fact, with Anna, he does appear to have established a limited comeback to form. The choice of subject is déjà vu territory no doubt but the valorous action and respectable tech specs give this film some much needed momentum.
The film is set in a time where KGB and CIA were operating at their peak and double agents and enemies of the state were dime-a-dozen. Anna Poliatova(Sasha Luss) is saved from squalor by the KGB, given a glamorous cover as a model in Paris, and tasked with assassinating rich men. Its Besson's much favoured theme at play yet again but the difference really lies in the manner in which this film plays out.
Besson, the scriptwriter tries to overdo the 'duplicity' angle so many times over that it becomes ridiculous. The dramatic switches, twists, reveals, flashbacks, flash forwards don't make much sense after a point and the narrative begins to resemble a muddled mess. Like in most of Besson's movies, the camerawork is dramatic and the action sharply violent. But there's nothing new to appreciate. This spy movie is rather like old wine in a new bottle. It doesn't have the body, buoyancy or freshness to be enlivening.
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