We went to watch the brand new Jamie Fox and Quvenzhane Wallis film, Annie, The reboot of the famous Broadway musical (as well as the less popular 1982 film,) of the same title.
Annie Bennet (played wonderfully by Wallis) is an 11year old foster kid who lives under the care of Ms Hannigan (Cameron Diaz's semi-alcoholic, failed musician of a character ) with other foster chidren of the same age. Their lives all revolve round the continued search/wait for adoption or, in Annie's case, the wait for the arrival of her real parents. Her life changes forever, though, when she runs into William Stacks (Jamie Fox), billionaire business owner and candidate in the New York race to be mayor. Although there are similarities with the original story, 2014's Annie has been, well, 2014-ified.
From the use of smartphones to the parodying of fantasy films (ahem, Twilight, I'm looking at you,) the film has a very modern edge, successfully carried off by the street smart, Annie who knows her New York block like the back of her hand. That's as far as I can go in describing the movie without giving too much else away!
I'm not really a fan of reboots. The bad ones usually fall apart because they either fail to capture the essence of the original film/production and or they try too hard to replicate its success. The ones that succeed, however are be ones that are able to successfully retain the barebones of the story that we all grew to love, while creating a new adventure for the new generation that is set to watch the reboot. And that's where Annie succeeds.
It's enough of a 2014 film for my younger sister to enjoy while still managing to remind my parents of the original Broadway musical they loved as children.
There are funny, touching moments from start to finish and it's always clear just who and what we are rooting for as the movie goes by, even when the bad guys try to ruin the day. I watched this film a day or two after Christmas and I can't think of many other films on circuit right now that will turn out to be as well suited to the whole family as Annie is.
A word for the young star in the leading role, Quvenzhané Wallis was outstanding. She was cute, quirky, intelligent and heart-melting;all with the ease of an accomplished actress. She is turning into quite the star after becoming the youngest ever actress to be nominated for an Oscar, following her role of Beasts of the Southern Wild.
She has no problem strutting her stuff alongside stars, Cameron Diaz and Jamie Fox while putting in a solid performance of her own.
Annie was a great watch for the whole family and I highly recommend it to viewers of all ages and backgrounds. Also, whether or not you like musicals, I dare you to try not to tap your feet or sing a long during the film. You will not succeed.
Lastly: I know you're scratching your head, here's how you pronounce Quvenzhané:
A perfect film for the holidays