Kernel Rating (out of 5):
MPAA Rating: PG Length: 118 minutes
Age Appropriate For: 10+. The central plot focuses on the abandoned Annie, who grows up in foster care with a neglectful foster mother who drinks too much and has a “medicine cabinet” that is off limits; jokes about prostitution and the homeless; a lightly romantic and flirtatious relationship between two adult characters; some sexually charged dancing between adults at a nightclub; and some drinking-focused, bathroom-related, and spitting-out-food jokes.
The updated ‘Annie’ hits all the heartwarming notes you would expect from a movie released around the holiday season. The modernization works some of the time, but the film—while mostly pleasing—doesn’t feel particularly unique.
By Roxana Hadadi
The latest update to the classic “Annie” musical is refreshingly self-aware, and that may be its greatest asset. The film from producers Will and Jada Pinkett Smith is unabashed about its subversions—making the primary characters black instead of white, most obviously, and challenging the purpose of wealth and our expectations for women, more subtly—and it’s willingness to go places you wouldn’t expect give the film a particular kind of flair. It’s not a great film, but it’s an enjoyable one, and a holiday crowd-pleaser for sure.