Release Date: August 22nd, 2007 (IFC Center) by IFC First Take.
The Cast: Greta Gerwig, Kent Osborne, Andrew Bujalski, Mark Duplass, Ry Russo-Young, Kevin Bewersdorf.
Directed by Joe Swanberg.
BASIC PREMISE: Hannah (Gerwig) breaks up with her boyfriend, Mike (Duplass), and moves on to dating her two co-workers, Matt (Osborne) and Paul (Bujaski).
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Hanna Takes the Stairs has a very thin plot and equally thin characters, which makes for a rather dull experience. Greta Gerwig, who somewhat resembles Cécile de France here, gives a decent performance as Hannah, a young woman who basically can’t commit to a serious relationship with one guy. In the opening scenes, she breaks up with her current boyfriend, Mike, and, soon enough, sets her eyes on Matt, a shy co-worker at a production company. She also happens to be flirting with another co-worker, Paul. Who will Hannah choose? How will these inter-office romances affect her work relationship with them? Co-writer/director Joe Swanberg doesn’t provide enough character development for you to care about the answer to those questions. Paul, Matt and even Mike seem like nice people who just make the mistake of falling for a very confused young woman. Although the dialogue feels organic and believable, just like other talkative films such as Funny Ha Ha and Mutual Appreciation, it seems more like the characters are talking a lot, but actually saying very little that’s revealing about themselves or compelling. Moreover, the third act seems rushed and contrived. This would have worked much better as a short film rather than an 83-minute film that often drags and lacks imagination.
SPIRITUAL VALUE: Unfortunately, none.
INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: Poor character development and often drags.
NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 8
IN A NUTSHELL: Mostly organic dialogue doesn’t make up for an uninvolving plot with dull characters.
RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: TV
The "H" Menu