Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Cloud Atlas movie review.

Just one of several reviews I plan on posting today. Finishing up the rest of my must watch list is coming along well, and I should feel confidant in locking up the year eventually. It's strange that it all flew by so quickly, but a new year has begun, and I look forward to what's ahead. I hope you'll continue to tune in regularly this year.

I confess that I was never the biggest fan of Andy or Lana Wachowski, best known for their genre smash hit The Matrix, perhaps the only film they'd ever directed that I actually like. However, what they cook up along with co-director Tom Tykwer is a beautiful mystery of a movie that I'm confidant will be talked about many years from now. There is no one definitive story to Cloud Atlas (Based on the 2004 novel of the same name), instead, it's a collection of stories set in different timelines ranging from 1849 to 106 years after apocalyptic events, utilizing an all star cast to wonderful effect.

Despite a very lengthy runtime of close to three hours, Cloud Atlas is surprisingly easy to watch all in one sitting. It's a clever movie that mixes in a little bit of everything. Dark humor, moral dilemmas, romance, action, conspiracy, heartbreak, sweeping imagery, it's got something for everyone. How these individual segments connect to each other is a very provoking thematic detail that Tykwer and the Wachowski's love examining. It's not always done to uniformly astonishing effect, but it is ambitious in how it raises enough questions and answers, but still leaves plenty to the imagination.

One element that I applaud is the decision to go in a sort of Angels In America route by having actors play multiple roles. A talented ensemble cast that includes Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent, Hugo Weaving, Jim Sturgess, and many others are consistently excellent, some more entertaining than others in segments. Perhaps the most impressive aspect is the special makeup effects for the players. Not all the creations are excellent, but much of the work is so impressive that it renders an actor completely unrecognizable.

It's a shame that it didn't get much of an audience at the box office, though, because it is one of the most fascinating cinematic experiences you could hope for. A lot of it is uneven, I'm not gonna lie, but these three directors, and their unique voices, should be applauded merely for having the audacity to adapt such an "unfilmable" novel to the screen. With repeat viewings, and staying power, this could become a beloved classic years from now.

**** / *****

No comments:

Post a Comment