A young girl (Annie) lives in a foster home, and is awaiting a sign of her parents existence, meanwhile a rich businessman (Stacks) is attempting to get elected as mayor, with little success. When by coincidence the two of them bump into each other, a plan is hatched to use Annie to boost Stack’s mayoral campaign.
This is a remake, and an updating of the 1982 classic. So there are some new songs, and a couple of the old favourites have been revamped for the modern age. I went into this having little memory of the original as it’s been ages since I saw it. But I’d really like to watch it again after having seen this one.
It is impossible not to be won over by the charm of the film. The central performance from Quvenzhane Wallis is brilliant, and she has once again proved that even at the age of 11 she has the charisma to compete with some of Hollywood’s top actors. This is especially evident here in Annie, as Quvenzhane has to compete with Jamie Foxx and Cameron Diaz at her scenery chewing best, but she manages not to be eclipsed, and she really is the star of the movie. That isn’t to say that no-one else is good, as I’ve said Cameron Diaz gives it her all, also Jamie Foxx and Rose Byrne while more understated are brilliant as well. And I can’t talk about performances without mentioning the cameos from Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, Michael J Fox and Rhianna, all are absoultely bizarre, and equally hilarious.
Now, I have talked to people who were big fans of the original, and they have said that a few more of the original songs would have been more than welcome. But everyone seems to have quite enjoyed the modernisation on the whole. It is a surprisingly long film, but I honestly wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t looked at the runtime. It rattles along has quite a few laughs, and more than enough heart to keep you interested for all two hours. One niggle I might have is that I’m not sure it needed to be a PG. Maybe they made it a PG because Miss Hannigan flirts with some guys, I don’t know. It should probably be a U.
Overall, this is a very strong family musical, and if you have young children or you are young children, I guarantee you will enjoy it. No, it probably won’t win any awards. It’s not the best musical ever, it’s not the best family film ever. But it’s a damn good one.