2014’s Annie was horrible, so I have read, mostly because people have grown up with Annie(s) on Broadway, in school play, in movie, and on TV. Re-invented classic is hard to be un-bias and successful: 27% Tomatometer. The transformation of Annie from European to Afro-American was certainly not the first as story re-telling was concerned. Do you remember Whitney Houston‘s fairy Godmother, and Black Cinderella (Brandy Norwood)?
This Annie(Quvenzhané Wallis) is au-courant: an average American kid in Gap and a Walmart knapsack. She is a foster child and not an orphan lives in Harlem. Her big dream is to find her birth parents, who left her a note when abandoned. Her locket is the only thing to validate if they ever return.
Hannigan(Cameron Diaz), an alcoholic single foster parent of five girls sharing a decent apartment. She was a cursory member of defunct C+C Factory (Gonna Make you Sweat/Everybody Dance Now), stunted in her supposed stardom while collecting $157 per kid per week from SS. Across the street lives her admirer, store owner, Lou(David Zayas).
Will Stacks(Jamie Foxx), owner of Stacks Communications, tries to buy his way into City Hall of New York. Guy(Bobby Cannavale) and Grace(Rose Byrne) are Stacks’ campaign pundits. In an era of instant feedbacks, inferential statistics, and photo-ops, Annie has become the poster kid after having rescued by this cold-hearted and socially crippled billionaire, Stacks.
Annie is smart, witty, cheerful, and know-how-to-work-the-camera is playing Stacks, as much as Guy and Grace her. It is supposed to be a win-win for everyone. But the big word “Trust” gets in the way, and brings havoc to awaken the subdued with a big production of car and copter chase. At the same time, educating the youngsters to use social media and geolocation, so that it enhanced the chance of survival, if kidnap happens.
Although it remains a musical, none of the songs were really hit-worthy. The signing of various characters were un-enchanted, and the boiler plate “Tomorrow” went well with Wallis’ Annie: cheerful and optimistic. Byrne and Cannavalle seems to be in every movie, aren’t they? Diaz and Foxx were decent.
WATCH… best for a rainy or snowy afternoon, with kids and popcorn.