Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Still Puzzling about “Cloud Atlas?” Here’s Some Help

posted by Nell Minow

“Cloud Atlas” is confusing, with six different stories set in six different time periods told in six different styles but with the same actors in different roles in all of them and the same themes — fighting tyranny and oppression, the power of love, the spirit of creation.  And a comet-shaped birthmark.  Those who are still trying to figure it all out and would like some help should try:

My friend Jen Chaney has an excellent primer in the Washington Post on the movie’s Where’s Waldo-style age, race, and gender-melding multiple casting.

Entertainment Weekly helpfully explains the differences between the book and the movie.  Big surprise — the movie has more emphasis on the love stories.

Slate’s Forrest Wickman takes on the movie’s themes of reincarnation, good vs. evil, interconnectedness and the bigotry that impedes it, revolution and change, and the birthmark.

Slate also has a glossary for the annoying Jar-Jar Binks-style patois of the episode set farthest in the future.  And the Slate Spoiler Special podcast has the kind of post-movie discussion you could have, too, if your friends were in grad school.

And while we’re at it, let’s take a look at what the Wachowskis (the “Matrix” siblings who are two-thirds of the directors of the film) have to say about it.  From Lana Wachowski:

Foucault gave us insight into power in the postmodern world, and now we understand it in a different way than Homer did, but power will be a subject in the human story, I think, as long as we’re human. [Laughs.] And so when we first read David Mitchell’s book, I thought it was an unbelievable examination of incredibly varied perspectives, and also the relationship between the responsibility we have to people we have power over, and the responsibility we have to the people who have power over us. Are we meant to just accept their conventional construct of whatever they imagine the world to be? Or are we obliged in some way to struggle against it? In the reverse, what is the obligation of the person whose life we have power over? Are they obliged to struggle against that conventional relationship? This is stuff of good stories.



Previous Posts

Interview: Todd and Jedd Wider about the Bullying Documentary "Mentor"
Producers Todd and Jedd Wider generously took time to answer my questions about their documentary, "Mentor," the story of two teenagers who committed suicide following relentless bullying. The film, which received Honorable Mention for Best Documentary Feature at the 2014 Woodstock Film Festival th

posted 3:56:57pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Clip: Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ApzHJhZz2JQ" frameborder="0"] The latest in Disney's animated Tinkerbell series adds Ginnifer Goodwin to the cast. Coming in March of 2015, it explores the ancient myth of a mysterious creature whose distant roar sparks the curiosity

posted 1:23:59pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: "Avatar" Villain Stephen Lang on Playing a Good Guy Coach in "23 Blast"
Stephen Lang is best known for playing the villain in "Avatar." But in "23 Blast," based on the real-life story of Travis Freeman, a high school football player who lost his vision but stayed on the team, Lang plays a good guy, the coach who encouraged and supported him. I talked to Lang about actin

posted 5:56:30am Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Birdman (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Filmed as though it was almost entirely one long, stunning, audacious, breathless and breathtaking shot, "Birdman" (subtitled "The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance") explodes with ideas and visions, adopting the language of dreams to explore and upend the very idea of storytelling. Michael Keaton p

posted 5:59:46pm Oct. 23, 2014 | read full post »

John Wick
This is a movie directed by two stunt men, which means it is pretty much a first-person shooter video game projected onto a movie screen. But that also means that it is directed by people wh

posted 5:44:02pm Oct. 23, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.