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Cloud Atlas

  • 2012
  • R
  • 172min
  • 66%
  • 7.5 / 10

Cloud Atlas follows a unique narrative arc, telling several separate but interconnected stories, each set in a very different time period on Earth. Throughout the film, we see different characters in each unique story, as they relate to one another within their own stories, and as they relate to the characters of the other stories in the film, weaving a single wide-reaching narrative out of several smaller ones. The actors in the movie also work toward this end, by portraying several different characters across the different stories, further bridging the narrative links between them. We see time periods ranging from the 1800s and 1930s to the modern day as of the film's release, as well as the distant future of 2144. Cloud Atlas explores the lives of a wide range of characters and the vastly different experiences they have, and yet also depicts the interconnectedness of them all through vast expanses of time, lending a deeply personal look at the characters as well.

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Cloud Atlas is a uniquely epic tale in modern cinema, as a rather uncompromising vision from the Wachowskis. The movie's plot and use of its cast in multiple roles serve to demonstrate the themes that the directors were going for, of interconnectedness through love and friendship, across time. The movie is also notable for its lengthy runtime of nearly three hours, encompassing the many individual stories within the movie.

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about the movie

Cloud Atlas is a 2012 fantasy adventure epic written and directed by the renown Wachowski siblings, best known for their Matrix film trilogy. The film is itself and adaptation of the novel of the same name from author David Mitchell, written in 2004. The film stars Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugo Weaving, and Jim Broadbent, among others, and is notable for having many actors in the film portraying several characters each. It was produced by Stefan Arndt, Grant Hill, and the Wachowskis, and funded entirely through independent sources, making it the most expensive independent film ever produced, with a budget of over $128 million. The film was distributed by Warner Brothers. Unfortunately, the film was not a financial success, only making around $130 million in its theatrical run.