Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Movie Review: Cloud Atlas

I'm reviewing this movie a bit late to see it in movie theaters but the review will stand for a home video release. I wanted to make sure I saw this for the visuals on the big screen with great audio.

I really don't know how to review this movie … I've had a hard time figuring out if it was good or bad.

I certainly know that there are elements I really liked (Hugo Weaving) and elements I didn't like (unnecessary nudity and cursing).

The movie (and I presume, the book) follows the lives of 6 people at different time periods and how their stories are connected - even  though they really aren't.

Through the discovery of diaries, memoirs, and published works from the various characters - The movie switches between a story from the 1800's that follows a young Lord traveling to America to take part in his fiance's family slave trade to a 1930's composer discovering the memoirs of the Lord's travels to the 1970's with a reporter uncovering a scandal that inadvertently discovers love letters from the '30's composer to a future where a clone rises up to expose a horrific truth about existence to a post-apocalyptic world where some are far advanced and others are barbarians.

The plot borrows elements from so many stories and lacks overall originality.

Some visuals are stunning. Some of the acting is incredible as each "star" plays six or more roles in the film through different subplots.

Hugo Weaving as Smoke - The Devil
As always, Tom Hanks plays an excellent geek and weirdo, but the star of the film is Hugo Weaving in a portrayal of the Devil. He's truly terrifying and very original. While some portrayals are top notch, the actors and actresses in different makeups at times (throughout time) are very confusing.

I would rate Cloud Atlas (2 out of 5)

I'm not sure if the book is better, but it would seem that it couldn't be and might be even more confusing than the movie was. 

I'm also leery of one theme … that there are no heroes - we simply slip into slavery and servitude and the heroes matter not because we will soon slip again.

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