Posts Tagged ‘cloud atlas’

DVD Geek: Cloud Atlas

Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

Every once in a while, somebody makes a really great movie that doesn’t become popular right away, but gradually becomes more popular than most of the other movies of its time.  Blade Runner comes to mind as an obvious example, and then there was the granddaddy of them all, Intolerance.  Well, Cloud Atlas will surely find its way into that group in a few years.  The film is just flat out too sophisticated for mass audiences to tolerate—heck, a lot of it is in two different forms of ‘future English,’ neither of which is translated—but if there is any justice in the halls of moviedom, popularity and obsession for Cloud Atlas will gradually spread across generations and across the globe now that Warner Home Video has issued the 2012 production on a Blu-ray + DVD + Ultraviolet Combo Pack.

Directed by the Wachowski siblings Lana and Andy, and by Tom Tykwer, the film, like Intolerance, is broken into different stories set in different eras, with dazzling editing that jumps from story to story like fingers sweeping down the keys of a piano.  The prominent cast members have multiple roles, figuring centrally in some stories and peripherally in others.  Tom Hanks is top billed, and his performances are no stunt—he’s really, really good in each of his highly varied manifestations.  Halle Berry, James Broadbent, Jim Sturgess, Ben Whishaw and Doona Bae also have central roles, with Hugo Weaving, Susan Sarandon, Keith David, James D’Arcy, Zhou Xun and Hugh Grant appearing multiple times, as well.  The stories carry a common theme of freedom, with the ironic corollary that in order to be free, each individual is dependent upon others to achieve or sustain that freedom, and they are given a spiritual link through the shared cast, and through repeated quirks—some of the characters have the same distinctive birthmark, or pass objects and ideas along down the years.  One story is deliberately comedic, and two of them have elaborate special effects, including one that is, in a good way, a cross between Blade Runner and Soylent Green.  Running a grand 172 minutes, the film is dazzling and intelligent, and is never tedious or introspective.  It will take multiple viewings before people begin to recognize how elaborate its breakdown of religion is—how events that happen hundreds of years earlier change in the telling across the centuries while retaining the essence of their truth as an unmutable core—and just how plain satisfying its storytelling is as it whips you along from one situation to the next.  It is a thrilling movie, and is easily the best theatrical feature to come out of 2012, not only for its unrestrained entertainment, but for the boundaries it breaks as it advances the art of filmmaking.

The picture is letterboxed with an aspect ratio of about 2.35:1.  The image quality is finely detailed, and the temptation to freeze frame after frame is difficult to resist.  The DTS sound has a full dimensionality and engaging directional effects.  There are French and Spanish audio tracks in 5.1 Dolby Digital, English, French and Spanish subtitles, and 55 minutes of excellent promotional featurettes that jump between clips from the film, a few behind-the-scenes shots and a group interview with the directors and novelist David Mitchell, in which they share many valuable insights about the movie and reveal details that would otherwise be missed, even after a dozen viewings.  The DVD included in the set has 5.1-Dolby sound that is not as enveloping or enrapturing as the BD’s DTS track.  The other language options are the same as the BD, and there is one of the featurettes, running a total of 7 minutes.

DGA Not Wholly Pleased With Task Of Apportioning Credits For Cloud Atlas

Monday, October 8th, 2012

DGA Not Wholly Pleased With Task Of Apportioning Credits For Cloud Atlas

Hugo Weaving On Playing A Hefty Female Nurse

Sunday, September 16th, 2012

Hugo Weaving On Playing A Hefty Female Nurse

Wrapping Cloud Atlas

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

Wrapping Cloud Atlas

Taking The Global Finance Of The Wachowski-Tykwer Cloud Atlas As The Future

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Taking The Global Finance Of The Wachowski-Tykwer Cloud Atlas As The Future

Writer David Mitchell On Wachowski-Tykwer Cloud Atlas

Sunday, September 25th, 2011

Writer David Mitchell On Wachowski-Tykwer Cloud Atlas

Can The $100 Million Wachowski-Tykwer Cloud Atlas, Germany’s Largest Budget, Also Become Germany’s Blockbuster?

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

Can The $100 Million Wachowski-Tykwer Cloud Atlas, German Film’s Largest Budget, Also Become Germany’s Blockbuster?


Tuesday, April 12th, 2011



(April 12, 2011) – Iconic filmmakers Andy and Lana Wachowski, directors/ writers of THE MATRIX trilogy, and Tom Tykwer, award-winning director/ writer of PERFUME and RUN LOLA RUN, have joined forces to write and co-direct CLOUD ATLAS, and together with award-nominated producers Grant Hill and Stefan Arndt they will produce the film under their new label Five Drops. Philip Lee completes the team as executive producer. Tom Hanks will star in this unprecedented international production which is based on the best-selling, award-winning novel by David Mitchell. Focus Features International will handle international sales and distribution and will commence sales in Cannes.
With a story that travels the globe starting in the 1900s and reaching into the future, CLOUD ATLAS is currently in pre-production and will start shooting in September 2011.
CLOUD ATLAS is 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.
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