If you’re really a mean person you’re going to come back as a fly and eat poop.
The official synopsis for Cloud Atlas:
An epic story of humankind in which the actions and consequences of our lives impact one another throughout the past, present, and future as one soul is shaped from a murderer into a savior and a single act of kindness ripples out for centuries to inspire a revolution.
Directors: Lana and Andy Wachowski, Tom Tykwer
Writers: David Mitchell, Lana and Andy Wachowski, Tom Tykwer
Stars: Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugh Grant and Susan Sarandon
I know that the UK won’t get this film for a while. I will discuss details around the film. I will touch upon the story in a way that does not go into anything that gives it away.
Picture shows Tom Hanks as Zachry and Halle Berry as Meronym in a scene from “Cloud Atlas,” an epic spanning centuries and genres. The film is an epic of shifting genres and intersecting souls that features Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent, Hugh Grant, Hugo Weaving, Ben Whishaw, Jim Sturgess, James D’Arcy, Doona Bae, Keith David, Susan Sarandon and others in multiple roles spanning the centuries.
Cloud Atlas premiered at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival on September 9, 2012, and got a ten-minute standing ovation. The film was released in North America on October 26, 2012.
The film was adapted from a 2004 novel by David Mitchell, which had the same name. It is written and directed by Lana and Andy Wachowski [Lana Wachowski (born Laurence "Larry" Wachowski June 21, 1965) and Andrew Paul "Andy" Wachowski (born December 29, 1967), known together professionally as The Wachowskis and Wachowski Starship, and formerly as the Wachowski Brothers, are American film directors, screenwriter and producers. Wikipedia ] They created the film, The Matrix. Tom Tykwer also wrote and directed Cloud Atlas. He wrote and directed the film Run Lola Run.
The Cloud Atlas film consists of six stories – some see them as interrelated, some do not. For me, there was a connection between stories. The stories span the ages, from the South Pacific in the nineteenth century to a distant future. The six stories are: Pacific Ocean circa 1850; Zedelgem , Belgium, 1931; San Francisco, California, 1975; United Kingdom, 2012; Neo Seoul (Korea), 22nd century; An ocean island in a distant post-apocalyptic future – After The Fall 2321. The film is basically about reincarnation and the way various souls affect one another.
Did you know that this is the most expensive independent film ever made? (financed by independent sources; Warner Bros also paid $15 million to acquire the film’s North American rights). Bloomberg (a .com) says, Based on the book by David Mitchell, “Cloud Atlas,” marks a resurgence for independent films — movies not financed by major studios. Hedge funds and individuals who previously backed pictures vanished in the financial crisis, and studios like Walt Disney Co. closed or sold art-house units to focus on sequels and action films. Their retreat has given independent filmmakers a chance to snag well-known actors and open in more theaters.
The acting is very good. E Online says: Featuring in multiple roles, Tom Hanks, Halle Berry and Hugh Grant, the stories are stirred together in a genre mashup. It’s part 19th century period tale, part ’70s conspiracy thriller, part apocalyptic future, and more.
They felt comfortable playing around with the script in the editing process but the pages remained pretty constant. Andy Wachowski said, “the movie was facile enough and fluid enough that you could easily move scenes around.” Excellent editing…
The direction is very good as well. The 19th century section and the two future segments are directed by the Wachowskis. The 20th century stories are directed by Tykwer.
The site Movie Fanatic says; Reflecting the directorial love fest that is the trio, Tykwer reported never experiencing a filming effort that was more multi-faceted and glorious. “I wouldn’t have done this movie alone,” he said.
The script departs in structure from the novel. SF Gate relates; There is no apparent logic to these shifts, except, perhaps, an unconscious or cinematic one. A movement or a gesture in one era will connect with a similar movement in another. At times, you might hear someone talking in voice-over, while a scene from another era is shown onscreen. Likewise, there is little or no link between the stories, except, as one comes to realize, a moral one. “Cloud Atlas” attempts to depict endless cycles of recurrence, the moral patterns of human existence.
Either you like it or you don’t.
Lana Wachowski said; one of the reasons though that we’re not just writers, one of the reasons we are filmmakers is because of the joy we experience in watching what we write transform through the artist that were collaborating with.
This film elicited discussion about film making not reincarnation. The subject matter seemed less important here than the film itself and its execution. This is a very unconventional film and it is more akin to experimental film making than a Hollywood film. It is not an ‘experimental film’ but it is close to the genre. Like the film Tree of Life – the emphasis is how to use the film medium differently. Like Terence Malick’s film it tells a story differently. Lana Wachowski says; We have always thought that it’s interesting that no one has really done much with the cinematic language of editing. Editing is this very straightforward grammar; it’s like a sentence it begins with a capital letter ends with a period.
The reviews for this film are on opposite sides of the spectrum. The New York Times said, “You will have to decide for yourself whether it works. It’s that kind of picture. … Is this the stuff of Oscars? Who knows? Is it a force to be reckoned with in the coming months? Absolutely.”
I really enjoyed this film but someone I went with did not. You decide.