Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…
Everything is Connected
A set of six nested stories spanning time between the 19th century and a distant post-apocalyptic future. Cloud Atlas explores how the actions and consequences of individual lives impact one another throughout the past, the present and the future. Action, mystery and romance weave through the story as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero and a single act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution in the distant future. Based on the award winning novel by David Mitchell. Directed by Tom Tykwer and the Wachowskis.
"What is an ocean, but a multitude of drops?" - Adam Ewing
I think the only sensible way to review this film is by each of it's inter-twining stories. In chronological order, of course:
Time and setting: South Pacific Ocean, 1849
Genre: Sea-faring adventure/period drama
Protagonist: Adam Ewing (Jim Sturgess)
Well, I suppose a good place to start is the worst place to start, because things can only get better. Although the events of this section are meant to be small and cramped to show the gravity of the events that are to follow, this doesn't seem to gel with the rest of the story. The other stories have a bigger scope, while nothing much happens in this…
David Mitchell’s novel is one of the most impressive novels I have ever read. It is an exercise in style, an exploration of the nature of humanity and a narrative of hope, an appreciation of art and a glimmer of redemption for a self-destructive race. That is what I got out of it, but the book is so complex that multiple interpretations are possible and there is always the chance that people will not take anything from it at all. That’s the nature of any form of art. Where the film fails to be a successful adaption of the novel on that deeper level for me, it more than succeeds in distilling a common thread from it, structuring the complex…
It speaks volumes of a filmmaker when they can fluently negotiate, perhaps perfect, multitudinous genres during their careers. What speaks even louder and distinctive volumes is that adept versatility showcased in and confined to a singular film, which navigates genres in such a fluid manner that the coalition of possibly conflicting styles is in fact flawless. Cloud Atlas is one such phenomenal film for the Wachowski's and Tom Tykwer, and what they orchestrate beneath the 172 minute smokescreen is unparalleled, exceedingly audacious and possibly, in due time whilst the film ferments, a revered classic in cinema.
Historic and futuristic; comedic and mightily dramatic; thrilling and introspective, Cloud Atlas traverses an abundance of eras, harnessing the theory that each choice we…
Having read the book only after seeing the trailer a few months ago, I was never in the camp that thought the book should/could never be turned into a film. I read the book with an almost insurmountable amount of hype behind it, but it met those expectations handily. The film has been hyped even more than the book, with good reason! The book is epic and dramatic, spanning vast amounts of time and space. Even though it has one of the most interesting and impressive narrative structures of all time, the narrative is secondary in importance to the themes holding the disparate characters and circumstances together. How do you turn such a book into a movie without failing miserably?…
(Forward: I've been planning this review for a very long time now. I was very excited when the film came in the mail today.)
If a film is good, I'll usually think about it for a day or two before moving on. If it's great, I'l think about it for weeks. But to think about a film almost every day for nearly six months after I've first seen it? That takes a miracle.
And Cloud Atlas is that miracle.
Now, since I believe that the Academy should be subject to criminal abuse for disregarding Cloud Atlas, I shall now list every Oscar category that the film was eligible for and give reasons why it should have been a frontrunner at…
The Wachowski siblings have always been ambitious filmmakers even if they have overreached themselves on more than a few occasions. Cloud Atlas is undoubtedly their most ambitious project to date both thematically and logistically. Three directors, six interweaving stories and a big budget independent production dealing with existential questions: At worst it is career suicide, at best filmmakers’ folly.
Although David Mitchell’s original novel deals with the concept of storytelling it never seemed a natural fit for the silver screen. It is simply too dense and sprawling to be considered commercially viable. Therefore it took filmmakers with the vision and financial clout to bring this adaptation into the world. For all its faults, and it does have many, it is…
Sprawling and incohesive. Storytelling style is extremely distracting. A disappointing loss, because each of the stories, while impossible to follow scattered into out-of-order interspursed flashbacks, are largely well acted and well-shot. This movie has been ruined RUINED by editting.
Still catch more everytime I watch again. LOVE this movie
Cloud Atlas has to be applauded for its sheer ambition, even if it does have significantly glaring flaws. The interwoven story structure is actually quite simple, distilling the complex story arcs into an easily understandable plot. Speaking of the multiple plots, it's nice to see that all of them are generally enjoyable, even though some are better than others. In particular, the post-apocalyptic and future neo-Seoul were my favorites. Unfortunately, it's not a knockout, due to serious tonal inconsistencies that can drag the film down considerably, as well as some brilliant, but seriously distracting make-up.
Still, definitely worth a watch, with its beauty and grandeur making a lasting impression.
A multi-layered story spanning centuries featuring Tom Hanks,Halle Berry,Hugh Grant in multi male/female roles. Some strands of the story were excellent with others rather tedious. I was going to rate at it as a three star movie but added a half mark for the casting and makeup. I'll add another half when I figure out what is actually happening.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Sprawling, strange, and incredibly ambitious ... I loved it. Telling six loosely connected stories, pinballing from one plot to another with reckless abandon, knitting together wildly disparate tones into one cohesive whole, Tykwer and the Wachowskis together achieve something pretty incredible with this movie. They manage to make the six stories tell one story, even though the only thing holding them together is the themes and the actors, each of whom take on multiple parts, and each of whom really brings their A game (particularly Sturgess, Bae, Whishaw and D'Arcy). It's a bold experiment: for some in the audience I saw it with it clearly didn't work at all, but for me it all locked into place in sublime fashion. Oh, and the music is friggin' amazing.
I think I understood the take on souls but still felt lost throughout the film, waiting in anticipation for some understanding of what was going on. Apart from the confusion I still found every single scene engaging and I never felt bored. Strange. May have to watch it again
amazing! one of the world's greatest movies!
- Only God Forgives
- Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
- Spring Breakers
- A Field in England
- Eyes Wide Shut
- Speed Racer
- Marie Antoinette
- Spring Breakers
Peeping Tom, Night of the Hunter and a whole host of older films were ignored or given bad reviews upon…
- The Red Shoes
- Synecdoche, New York
- Time of the Gypsies
- Speed Racer
- La Jetée
Apologies for the rather clumsy and drab title, I was going to call it Pure Cinema but that isn't quite…