Review: Hanna 1×1 (Amazon)

A pointless preview of a faithful remake

Esme Creed-Miles as Hanna in Amazon's Hanna

Available on Amazon Prime

Young adults are apparently the most stressed out of any generation ever. Perhaps that’s why so many of them are murderous right now, even vicariously in a period piece such as Deadly Class. Even those of them who have grown up in forests with only their fathers for company and who’ve never met another living person are off killing people, apparently.

At least, if you believe Amazon Prime’s new show, Hanna, a remake/reboot of the 2011 Joe Wright movie.

Hanna’s sister

It sees Esme Creed-Miles – who eerily looks precisely 50% like dad Charlie Creed-Miles (The Gemini Factor, Press Gang) and 50% like mum Samantha Morton (Minority Report) – take on the Saoirse Ronan role as the titular wood-dwelling Hanna. She’s been camped out in a Central European forest since she was rescued by secret agent dad Joel Kinnaman (The Killing (US)Robocop, Altered Carbon) from a special institution when she was just a baby. Why was she there? We don’t know. Why has dad kept her from the world? Because he reckons that the evil secret agent woman in charge of chasing them down (Kinnaman’s The Killing (US) co-star Mireille Enos) is going to come after them if she discovers that they survived the car crash that killed Creed-Miles’ mother.

In the 16 years or so since, dad has been home schooling Creed-Miles in languages, geography and how to kill a man with just your thumb – presumably so she can look after herself or at least go to finishing school. Unfortunately, one day, she decides to disobey dad’s edict not to leave their little area of the forest and comes across a Polish wood chopper. After twatting him around a bit, she warms to him and ends up going exploring with him, which even more unfortunately leads to the wood chopper being arrested – and Enos discovering that Creed-Miles and Kinnaman are still alive.



And that’s more or less it for this first, preview episode of the series, which will premiere in full on Amazon next month. Which makes it hard really to tell if it’s any good. Creed-Miles is fine, Kinnaman is fine, Enos is fine. There’s all the gloss and production values you’d hope for from Amazon or even a Netflix production, with some lovely forest location filming and even a bit of Paris (or maybe faux Paris), too.

But the cast don’t really have that much to do. If you’re hoping that Kinnaman and Enos will even get to speak to one another, let alone have a scene together, you’ll be disappointed. Kinnamon gets to be punchy and test Creed-Miles on the population of Hanover, but there’s not really much of a familial bond between him and her, perhaps through design, perhaps not. The fight scenes are very good, but don’t do anything you’ve not seen before.

And as a plot… well, half an hour of wandering round the forest doesn’t really count.


Wait and see

So while Hanna might be a great show, Amazon’s decision to try to preview the series to whet our appetites is a weird one. I feel like I’ve already started the show and when episode two finally arrives in a month or so, I’ll be restarting after a long gap of time. And this first episode is certainly not spectacular enough – or even particularly engaging – to make me feel that’s going to be a worthwhile endeavour.

I’ve also already seen the original movie, and given this sticks relatively closely to the original story, I’m not that sure if watching something five times longer that’s basically the same is a good use of my time either.

So if you were planning on watching this, I’d advise holding off until the rest of the series becomes available.


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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