Tag Archives: Noah Taylor

HANNA (2019 – 2020) – My rating: 8/10


Because Hanna is a streaming Cable TV series each episode was directed by a different director as well as written by several writers. Each episode is treated separately with the continuous story of a different, sheltered, and gifted young lady. Of the TV adaptation, writer David Farr says: “I’ve always felt the film was weirdly male but knew this TV series would have a more female-centric quality.” I’m happy I choose to add Hanna (a remake of the original movie of the same name) to my playlist as it was an exciting series.


**** SPOILERS ****

Erik Heller (Joel Kinnaman) is a former CIA operative whose job was to recruit a very pregnant Johanna (Joanna Kulig) to participate in an exclusive CIA program, code name UTRAX. Pregnancy is the prerequisite to join UTRAX, which secretly enhanced children’s DNA with 3% wolf in order to create super-soldiers. Erik falls in love with Johanna who eventually gives birth to Hanna (Esme Creed-Miles). Erik, Johanna, and Hanna flee the program but Johanna is shot leaving Erik with Hanna.  He rescues Hanna fleeing the UTRAX program and the CIA.  In an effort to cover up UTRAX, the CIA orders their on-site agent, Marissa Wiegler (Mireille Enos), to shut down the project and eliminate all the babies. Currently, 15-year-old Hanna lives in a remote part of a forest in Poland with her stepfather Erik, who happens to be the only man she has ever known. Erik has trained Hanna to be an incredible killer and hunter on high alert, as they continue to be unlawed.

In season one, Hanna and Erik face many trials and tribulations.  Now experiencing adolescence, Hanna becomes curious about her very being.  She ventures away from her safe haven with Erik and learns much about the world she has been sheltered from.  Meeting new and exciting people, Hanna manages to survive while keeping her secrets intact.  She befriends Sophie (Rhianne Barreto) and even develops a crush on a high school student named Anton (Gamba Cole) who she meets through Sophie.  Many twists and turns fill season one with an adventure that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

In season two, Hanna has a new friend that’s like her named Clara Mahan/Girl 249 (Yasmin Monet Prince).  They are in serious danger since Clara escaped from UTRAX.  One of the biggest twists occurs in this season.  Adventures take place in Northern Romania, Paris, and Barcelona.  There is an enormous amount of kidnapping and trust issues between Hanna and Marissa and the team at UTRAX. Hanna, season two focuses on deciding just where Hanna will end up.

I found Hanna to be a worthwhile series that is certainly entertaining, exciting, and suspenseful. It is very much like the original movie, I’m not sure that this is a bad thing.  I do know as more seasons are introduced, the storyline usually changes.  On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the series holds an approval rating of 67% based on 39 reviews, with an average rating of 6.63/10. The second season holds a Rotten Tomatoes critics score of 93%, indicating universal acclaim. Hanna is airing on Amazon Prime Video with eight episodes each season, you might want to Check It Out!


SKYSCRAPER (2018) – My rating: 7/10

Skyscraper is an action film written and directed by Rawson Marshall Thurber. The story follows a former FBI agent who must rescue his family from a newly built skyscraper–the tallest in the world–after it is taken over by criminals and set on fire. The first non-comedy of Thurber’s career, it also marks his second collaboration with Johnson, following Central Intelligence released in 2016.

Standing at 3,500 feet (1,100 m) and 225 stories tall, a high level Asian financier, Zhao Long Ji  (Chin Han) financed the construction of the world’s tallest skyscraper in Hong Kong, which they call “The Pearl”. Halfway through the construction process, rival gangsters under the control of Kores Botha (Roland Møller), an international terrorist kingpin, decides to use his control of the construction crews to extort millions of dollars in shakedown payments.  To prevent a massive strike of workers, which would potentially halt production and cost millions of dollars, the financiers of the skyscraper agree to the shakedown amounts.   Botha learns the existence of a memory card, created by the financier group, that records as well as tracks his international money laundering scheme.  The financiers believe the memory card will provide them with insurance against any attempt by Botha to extort money from them a second time.

Meanwhile, a former FBI Hostage Rescue Team leader and U.S. war veteran, Will Sawyer (Dwayne Johnson), now assesses security for skyscrapers since having one leg amputated, from the knee down, while on a previous mission.  Will  has been fitted with a modern prosthetic leg and tasked with inspecting “The Pearl,” which houses several floors that function as their own society. Despite numerous risks highlighted by Sawyer, his bosses insist the skyscraper is impenetrable.

Skyscraper is action packed but totally unbelievable.  As usual, Dwayne Johnson gives a brilliant performance but some of the stunts are not humanly possible to obtain.  The organized gang was ruthless as most gangs are, stopping at nothing to achieve their goal, which includes igniting the 96th floor of the Skyscraper.  You can only imagine where the drama and adventure this action will take Will and his family. The film received mixed reviews from critics, who praised Johnson’s performance but criticized the script as clichéd and too similar to The Towering Inferno and Die Hard.  It’s filled with action and many tense moments — a nice way to pass the evening.  Check it out!