Parents' Guide to

Anna

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Twisty "memory" thriller is too uneven to be memorable.

Movie R 2014 99 minutes
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Kids say (2 ):

As a psychological thriller, Anna's (it was originally titled Mindscape) premise is compelling. A genius teenager with haunting eyes could be a psychopath or could be the victim of both a cleverer classmate's plan and her rich parents' neglect. Add in an emotionally damaged investigator trying to avoid commingling his own drama with his client's, and you've got the makings of an interesting story. But the filmmakers keep throwing in too many distractions, sub plots, and possible theories and scenarios that get so little follow-through that it's obvious they're red herrings.

Mark Strong, like Tom Hiddleston, is a wonderful English actor who's deserving of more lead roles instead of just playing wicked baddies. And it's a pleasure to see that Farmiga can match her sister Vera's soulful eyes and evocative acting style. But overall, this suspense-filled thriller is just intriguing and well acted enough to make you wait for the big reveal but messy enough to make you wish that you'd sat through a better twisty thriller.

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