“Anna” – False Advertising

Director: Luc Besson

Writer: Luc Besson

Producers: Luc Besson, Jason Cloth, Eric Mathis, Marc Shmuger, and Andjelija Vlaisavljevic

Starring: Sasha Luss, Helen Mirren, Luke Evans, Cillian Murphy, Lera Abova

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“Anna” is essentially what results when a filmmaker unsuccessfully tries their hand at recreating Christopher Nolan’s masterpiece, “Memento.” On the contrary to the expertly handled time jumps back and forth in Nolan’s film, the incorporation of these events in “Anna” is horribly utilized, leading to an increasingly muddled and disjointed script.

The “female John Wick action flick” that audiences were promised in the marketing material was nowhere to be found. While the action that was present was well-choreographed and directed efficiently, the lonely pair of noteworthy scenes of this nature could not make up for the murky narrative. Had the dramatic espionage tale been conveyed more cohesively and fluidly, the lack of action would have been perfectly acceptable. Unfortunately, this could not be farther from the truth.

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Sasha Luss in her role as Anna

Even the respectable performances from the solid cast including Sasha Luss, Helen Mirren, Luke Evans, and Cillian Murphy were not enough to pull this film back from the brink. It is really difficult to develop any sort of emotional attachment to the characters when the timelines of the story consistently branch off in the most jarring and unnecessary way possible, seemingly all for the sake of a “clever” metaphor within the narrative.

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Luke Evans as Alex Tchenkov and Luss as Anna

If you want a hard-hitting feminist action spy thriller, I suggest “Atomic Blonde,” starring Charlize Theron in the titular role. Staying away from “Anna” is probably a wise decision, unless you are on the market for a strenuous mental exercise with very little payoff.

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Atomic Blonde (2017)

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