I loved the 2011 film ‘Hanna’, simple as that, so when I saw that the soundtrack was being re-released in a limited numbered edition on red vinyl, well, that seemed a must have, except I never got around to ordering it. I was pleasantly surprised when I went to ‘Seismic Records’ at the weekend to pick up something else entirely that there it was, being unpacked from the same box that contained my order. Score! (Film Score!, no? You’re right, that’s barely a joke, I’m a little ashamed I wrote it)
It’s been released as an edition of 1500 and I have number 30. Low numbers are good I’m told when it comes to this sort of thing. Here it is on the deck:
It also comes with a printed insert and a nice plastic sleeve.
Now I have to be entirely honest, whilst originally watching the film I really liked the music, but I thought no more of it since then, and that was back when it came out in 2011, it was only through seeing it as an upcoming re-release (I’m pretty sure it was on a blog that I follow – can’t remember which one though) that I even realised that it was The Chemical Brothers. I’m so glad I did though as it is one of the most listenable soundtracks that I own. Yes it ties in to the film, as you can see from the following track titles:
|1. Hanna’s Theme|
|2. Escape 700|
|3. Chalice 1|
|4. The Devil is in the Details|
|5. Map Sounds / Chalice 2|
|6. The Forest|
|7. Quayside Synthesis|
|8. The Sandman|
|9. Marissa Flashback|
|10. Bahnhof Rumble|
|11. The Devil is in the Beats|
|12. Car Chase (Arp Worship)|
|13. Interrogation / Lonesome Subway / Grimm’s House|
|14. Hanna vs Marissa|
|15. Sun Collapse|
|16. Special Ops|
|17. Escape Wavefold|
|18. Isolated Howl|
|19. Container Park|
|20. Hanna’s Theme (Vocal Version)|
But I can easily listen as just an album though, without giving any thought to the images that accompany it, which I see as a good thing. I’ve since read some reviews that weren’t entirely complimentary, thought I think they entirely miss the point with their 5/10 and 3/5 reviews. This isn’t a Chemical Brothers album, it was written to accompany visuals so its prime purpose is to enhance those visuals not to be a standalone album with tracks akin to ‘Block Rockin Beats’ or ‘Galvanize’. For me it works both with the visuals and as a piece of music to listen to and I have no comparative judgement to make against their other releases as they are entirely different things.
You can listen to it yourself below if you like and make up your own mind, but for me, well, I love it.
Film Synopsis from IMDB (Contains Spoilers):
Hanna Heller (Saoirse Ronan) is a 15-year-old girl who lives with her father, Erik Heller (Eric Bana) in the wilderness of Finland. When she is first seen, she is hunting a reindeer which she shoots with a bow and arrow. Hanna chases the animal until she comes across it, collapsed. She comments that the arrow missed the heart and then she finishes off the reindeer with one shot.
Ever since she was born, Hanna has been trained by Erik to become an assassin. As part of her training, she has never come into contact with modern technology and has memorized a series of fake back stories for herself to be used when the time comes.
One night, Hanna approaches Erik and tells him that she is “ready”, and he retrieves a box containing an old transmitter, which he gives to her. After analyzing the situation, Hanna flips the switch, sending a signal of her location to Marissa Wiegler (Cate Blanchett), a corrupt CIA agent. Marissa sends a team to Erik’s cabin, where Hanna, who had been waiting for them, is captured and taken to a CIA safe house in Morocco. There, she discovers that Erik is a former CIA agent who betrayed the agency and knows a secret that can’t become public. Marissa has been assigned to kill him, but Hanna has been trained to kill Marissa by Erik. Knowing that Hanna was captured too easily, Marissa sends a body double (Michelle Dockery) to speak with Hanna. Hanna kills the false Marissa, breaks free and escapes the compound.
While on the run through the desert, she meets Sebastian (Jason Flemyng) and Rachel (Olivia Williams), and befriends their daughter Sophie (Jessica Barden). They decide to help her go to Berlin, after she tells them her fake back story. Meanwhile, Marissa hires a mercenary called Isaacs (Tom Hollander) to capture Hanna while she goes after Erik, who is in Germany. Later, Isaacs and his men corner Hanna and the family, but she manages to escape after killing one of Isaacs’ men. The boy of the captured family, who has a crush on Hanna, is tricked into telling Marissa that Hanna is heading for Berlin.
In Berlin, Hanna meets with one of her father’s associates, who lives in an abandoned amusement park, to rendezvous with her father. However, Marissa and Isaacs locate them. They kill Erik’s associate, but Hanna escapes. She eventually meets with her father at her grandmother’s apartment, where she discovers that Marissa has murdered her grandmother. Hanna learns that Erik is not her father, and it is revealed that Erik was once a recruiter for a program in which pregnant women were recruited from abortion clinics so that the CIA could alter their children’s DNA, enhancing their strength, stamina, and reflexes while suppressing emotions like fear and empathy in order to create a batch of super-soldiers. The project was, however, deemed a failure by the CIA higher-ups and all the women and their genetically-modified children were eliminated. Erik, unwilling to allow Hanna and her mother to be killed, tried to escape with them, but Marissa murdered Hanna’s mother while Erik escaped with Hanna to their cabin, where, in complete isolation, Erik was able to train her to avenge her mother while preventing the CIA from locating them.
Their discussion is interrupted by Marissa and Isaacs as Erik acts as a distraction to allow Hanna to escape. Erik kills Isaacs and his partner, but is shot and killed by Marissa. Marissa then chases Hanna back to the abandoned amusement park where the two finally have a stand off. Hanna pleads for an end to the killing, but Marissa shoots Hanna, who in turn wounds Marissa with an improvised bow-and-arrow. As Marissa attempts to flee, Hanna hunts her to the top of a tall slide causing Marissa to fall down the slide, dropping her gun. Hanna picks up the gun, commenting how she missed Marissa’s heart, and shoots her.