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Hannah 2017



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HANNAH is the intimate portrait of a woman's loss of identity as she teeters between denial and reality.

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About Hannah 💬

Left alone grappling with the consequences of her husband's imprisonment, Hannah (Charlotte Rampling) begins to unravel. Through the exploration of her fractured sense of identity and loss of self-control, the film investigates modern-day alienation, the struggle to connect, and the dividing lines between individual identity, personal relationships, and societal pressures.


HANNAH explores the inner torment of a woman in denial, trapped by her own sense of loyalty and devotion, paralyzed by her insecurities and dependencies. HANNAH's struggle touches me deeply, maybe because I sense how unforgiving the world can be towards her, or maybe because I see in her certain parts of myself. What I know is that with this film I wanted to feel close to her, to hold her hand, to empower her, to reassure her. More than anything, I wanted the world to see her, to sense her grief, and to witness her struggle to define herself anew, alone.

The film is based upon the conviction that close observation of a single character, or even a single mood, can reflect our condition as human beings and allows anybody to ''mirror'' himself in the character and the story. I aspire to this catharsis: giving the chance to the filmgoer to recognize himself, and eventually to understand something more about himself. Furthermore, HANNAH pursues a kind of investigation on the boundaries between individual and social identity (in this specific case, the identity of a couple). I think it belongs to research which is part of a wider study, one of my own personal interests which has already emerged in Medeas. Here, the tragedy was based on the impossibility of the main character, a father, to affirm his need of control and thus his role in which he identified himself in his family. Important inner conflicts arise from these kinds of fractures, due to interpersonal or self-imposed pressures. Conflict is even more inward in HANNAH, as compared to Medeas, and reaches its climax when the main female character feels her own identity and that of the world around her fail.

I have always had in mind Charlotte Rampling ever since the screenplay, from the very first word I wrote with Orlando Tirado: she was my muse, but I was dreaming to think she would accept the role. I was about 14 when I saw Charlotte in a film at the cinema for the first time, and it was love at first sight: Luchino Visconti's The Damned (La caduta degli dei), with that look which could pierce you I got her a copy of Medeas and the screenplay of HANNAH and then we met in Paris. We recognized each other during that meeting. I was filled with inspiration working with her, close to an artist seeking truth with Charlotte's integrity.

In the film, we see the stranded whale which is only a metaphor: as a matter of fact, it evokes more than it symbolizes. It reflects something that is about to die or is perhaps already dead. Nevertheless, we are never been sure if HANNAH identifies with the whale, if that awareness really belongs to her, although people around her talk about it, even when she finally sees the whale with her own eyes. Moreover, her reaction is to have an emotional and psychological breakdown when her husband is arrested, the effect of which is just the loss of any awareness, as if she were entangled in a spiral where we see her shaken, hovering, even to the point of not recognizing herself anymore and losing her identity.

I decided to not make HANNAH's husband's crime clear because I didn't want it to divert our attention from the heart of the movie: his moving away and arrest are so many catalysts that force HANNAH to come to terms with herself. I think it is crucial that one realizes the seriousness of his charge, but it is also essential that the center of the story remains the main character's inner world, her bewilderment and despair, without the misleading distraction of more attention being paid to the crime.

When I think about models, I recall certain names which make us wonder about their films, questioning rather than giving answers: first and foremost, Antonioni, as well as Buñuel, Haneke, Lucrecia Martel, Chantal Akerman, Carlos Reygadas, Tsai Ming-liang, John Cassavetes, Michelangelo Frammartino, Bela Tarr... Directors who use a very personal language, taking heed to reveal the truth of human condition, who allowed me to better know myself and the world through their films. Not to mention that we owe certain of the more complex and attractive female portraits in the history of cinema to some of these directors, such as Monica Vitti in The Adventure or in Red Desert, Gena Rowlands in A Woman Under the Influence, Delphine Seyrig in Jeanne Dielman.

Probably these may seem to be very ''mainstream'' names for an Italian director who decided to live in the U.S.A., however, I live in Los Angeles, not because of a fascination with American movies, but for the feeling of freedom, it gives me. And so I realize more and more, as time goes by, that my position as a ''foreigner'' makes me feel at ease, a position with which I identify myself more and more.

Andrea Pallaoro

Hannah Movie Details 🎥

Directed by

Andrea Pallaoro

Writing Credits

Andrea Pallaoro

Orlando Tirado


Charlotte Rampling

André Wilms

Stéphanie Van Vyve

Simon Bisschop

Fatou Traoré

Jean-Michel Balthazar

Music by

Michelino Bisceglia

Cinematography by

Chayse Irvin

Genre: Drama

Countries: Italy, France, Belgium

Hannah Official Trailer

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