I watched “Cloud Atlas” last night and, in some way, I’m still watching it…

March 12, 2013


Hello to whomever today.

Last night, I finally sat down and watched “Cloud Atlas”.

I have never read the book nor even heard of the book prior to this movie coming to fruition. What I can imagine though is that at least 85% of the people who started reading the book ARE STILL READING THE BOOK. Generally speaking, they’ll be reading that book for the rest of their fucking lives I’m guessing and into their next life and the one after that because I imagine every night when one slumbers more pages to the book grow in the back causing the book to be an endless cornucopia of reading about winding tales in some sci-fi past, present, and future.

The movie is long. It’s not the longest movie I’ve ever watched by a long shot, but it does feel quite long. It’s not slow. I don’t want to misrepresent the movie. The movie is not slow. It’s just long. Imagine running a marathon from a Kenyan Olympic star’s perspective. No matter how fast the Kenyan runs, he’s still going to have to run for 2 – 3 hours. Or she for that matter. Run as fast as you want, but 26+ miles is still 26+ miles and they’re going to take awhile to run. That’s how Cloud Atlas was. It was fairly quick paced, but it was just a fucking long ass movie that no matter how quickly they edited between storylines or no matter how much prosthetic make-up they slapped on Hugo Weaving – it’s still going to be llllloooonnnngggg.

Yes, that is Hugo Weaving aka Agent Smith aka the Red Skull aka the Elf King guy from Lord of the Rings who probably had an -andoor or something on his name or whatever – dressed as a Nurse Ratched like woman.

So, what did I think of the movie?

Kind of hard to say.

I wasn’t bored.

That’s incredible positive in my opinion and at the same time I don’t how much I really liked the movie or would recommend it to anyone. I think there is a select audience out there that should definitely see it. Obviously, any sci-fi lovers should see it. People who sat through The Hobbit and are planning on sitting through 2 more Hobbits as well. The movie is a murky mess of about 7 storylines that feature the same rotating cast of actors playing roles that are similar to roles from one of the other storylines. They meander around and in the end teach us a few lessons about humanity.

What we learn? Well, “oppression is bad”, “cannibalism is bad”, “love is good”, “greediness is bad”, and “seeking the truth could get you killed”.

There are several actors in the movie who play several parts in the movie and for the most part they play either good characters or bad characters or a background character.

Let’s take Tom Hanks for an example…

Tom Hanks plays 6 characters in the movie with 5 having a role to play in one of the above lessons. Sometimes he’s a good guy; sometimes he’s a bad guy. Older British actor Jim Broadbent plays 5 characters with really only 2 as big deal characters, but they go back and forth between being good and bad.

Meanwhile, Halle Berry plays 6 characters and the ones that are actually apart of storylines are all good characters because how on Earth could this Halle Berry lead you astray…

This gorgeous woman is 46 years old probably been gorgeous her whole life and chances are will continue to be. There ain’t nothing wrong with Halle Berry… except her choice in men, but that’s a different article altogether.

Anyway, if you follow Halle Berry you doin’ right with your life, apparently.

I forgot something else we learn – “interracial relationships are good”.

Halle’s apart of one in the movie and it’s not even just interracial it’s almost about inter-evolutionary or something. But there are a few storylines about that. If you’re wondering “racism is bad” in Cloud Atlas.

So, I’ll say it was interesting. I’m not sold on bad or good in this regard. There were certainly a lot of good moments and there were certainly a lot of bad or eyebrow furrowing moments. Not bad like Twilight or Warm Bodies or Expendables bad just shrugging my shoulders like “ok?” kind of stuff happening from time to time.

I’d like to say that in the end everything makes sense, but I don’t know if that’s even the point of the movie to do that or if it does make sense. I don’t know if the writer makes sense of everything. I feel like as mentioned there are themes in the movie and if you cross one of those themes then you pay for it in a similar way as the rest pay for crossing those themes.

For instance, the sin of greediness in the movie generally results in death. Not many greedy people in the movie have a happy ending. Same can be said for the racists and the cannibals. And for Hugo Weaving. Nothing good happens to Hugo Weaving in the movie. Hugh Grant?

For the most part, nothing good happens to him either.

I don’t know if this is a selling point to you or not, but Hugh Grant plays a couple actual cannibals and a couple metaphorical cannibals in the movie. Strangely enough, that was a selling point for me.

I did want to see this movie when I first heard about it simply because the Wachowski brothers were making it. There is a third director who helped make the movie as well Tom Tykwer. Either way, as of right now, I’ll see any movie the Wachowski brothers make. So far, I have and I haven’t been disappointed. Then I saw that Tom Hanks was involved and Halle Berry and a whole bunch of other people were in it and some were interesting like Mr. Weaving.

But I didn’t end up seeing the movie in theaters. Apparently, not many did. The movie tanked in the theaters. I don’t think it was out in the theaters for too long around here, but I didn’t make much effort to see it either. I knew it was long and I was unsure about it because of the mixed reviews and for awhile I didn’t actually know anyone who did see it. Finally, a friend saw it who I trust recommendations from, but by that point it was out of theaters around here.

I tried illegally downloading the movie and got a copy that turned out to be a bum copy. There’s an AVI version floating out there that is I believe from a “screener” and it blows goats. For some reason the video is spot on, but the audio is from a camera’s microphone recording the movie playing in some theater. I don’t know. Either way, I tried to watch it and it didn’t happen and I kind of forgot about the movie… that was until the flight home from St. Thomas.

Those stupid Direct TV headsets kept running the same commercial over and over and over again to get me to swipe my credit card to watch Cloud Atlas or Argo. But they kept running back-to-back trailers for Cloud Atlas and kept showing Hugh Grant as this tattooed cannibal guy and then Hugh Grant as this business tycoon who looked like a social cannibal. For some reason, that made me really want to see the movie. Hugh is in the movie a bunch, but he’s not in it nearly as much as the rest of the people, but it was interesting watching Hugh act villainous.

Do I recommend seeing “Cloud Atlas”?

If you want to see it then see it. If you don’t then don’t. If you wanted to see the movie and feel like you’re an informed viewer and know going into it it is a mess of storylines told through different time periods and the same actors play different roles through them and that’s appealing to you and you get that it’s going to be looooonnnggg… and you’re cool with that – then see it. You’ll probably enjoy it.

If that doesn’t sound appealing then go find something else. What do you want me to say?

I mean…

Tom Hanks does speak like Jodie Foster in “Nell” for a portion of the movie.

And, Halle Berry is flawless.


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