Quvenzhané Wallis, Jamie Foxx, Rose Byrne, Bobby Cannavale, Cameron Diaz, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Tracie Thoms, Dorian Missick, David Zayas, Stephanie Kurtzuba, Nicolette Pierini, Amanda Troya, Eden Duncan-Smith, Zoe Margaret, Patricia Clarkson, Michael J. Fox, Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher, Bobby Moynihan, Rihanna, Sia
Left by her parents with the promise that they'd be back, it's been a hard knock life for Annie (Quvenzhané Wallis) with her mean foster mom Miss Hannigan (Cameron Diaz). But everything's about to change when business tycoon and New York mayoral candidate Will Stacks (Jamie Foxx) makes a thinly-veiled campaign move and takes her in.
The famous Broadway play was not a source of success even for the great John Huston, hence the reason that has driven Will Gluck on the path of remaking it is completely unknown to me.
The sun is not coming out tomorrow or anytime for this Annie, the poor remake that is nothing more than just another missed opportunity.
The story of curly red-haired orphan girl Annie in Great Depression's America has been adapted with a modern and black twist. I'm not not going to complain about Annie's skin colour - I don't get why people are so upset about it -, but the problem is that the film tries too hard on too many levels to be too many things.
The characters are a complete mess. Annie is not an orphan anymore, but a foster child in search of her parents. She is still living with Miss Hannigan, now a wash-up singer from the 90's, that is just a mean, self-destructive woman that does more harm to herself than to people around her. The mysterious Daddy Warbucks is now Will Stacks, just a typical, and germaphobic tycoon running for mayor. Grace Farrell is just a pathetic woman that keeps on pointing out the fact that she has no friends.
The new arrangements of the songs is bloody painful and the addition of bass, guitars, and keyboards to make the songs sound pop is annoying. Most of the numbers just come out of nowhere, the choreographies are ridiculously awful and none of the numbers pop.
Then there is the Friday night thing. Each Friday night, Annie sits on the sidewalk in front of a restaurant waiting for her parents to come back for her. I suppose the restaurant's name "Domani" wants to be a tribute to the famous song "Tomorrow", but since lot of people won't get it, it has no reason to exists.
It was supposed to be a career vehicle for Quvenzhané Wallis, the young talent of Beasts of the Southern Wild, but it didn't really help her. She is cute and lovely, but unfortunately her voice is not good enough. Jamie Foxx, despite being the only one who can properly sing, was the wrong cast for Will stacks, as he makes the character look more cool than bad. Cameron Diaz put in this all the possible effort to be even more annoying that she usually is, and if I thought Carol Burnett was a disappointment, her Miss Hannigan was Oscar worthy compared to Diaz poor "attempt". The real shame is to see Rose Byrne and Bobby Cannavale in this mess.
Will Stacks: Sometimes what you're looking for is right in front of your face.