Cloud Atlas is a drama, romance and fantasy movie and an adaptation of the epic novel written by David Mitchell. The movie explores how the actions of individuals in different periods of time (past, present and future) affect their lives. A good life will lead to a good post-life and a bad life will lead to a bad life. Each member of the cast appears in multiple roles as the stories move through time.
There are six different stories that spans several generations; from mid-19th century to a distant future. The characters in each story are interconnected.
The first story is “The Pacific Journal of Adam Ewing”. The story takes place in a ship making a voyage across the Pacific Ocean. It is about the unlikely friendship between a Maori slave and a notary from San Francisco.
The second story is “Letters from Zedelghem which takes place in 1931 Belgium. It is about the relationship between an aging composer and a young and starving musician. The young musician works as an apprentice for the aging composer. This story is gay love drama.
“Half Lives: The First Luisa Rey Mystery” is the third story. It is about a young journalist in the 1970’s who uncovered a plot to allow a nuclear plant to melt down by an oil company executive. This is a political thriller about a crusading journalist in Southern California.
“The Ghastly Ordeal of Timothy Cavendish” is a story about a British publisher who is confined in a nursing home against his will. This story happens in present time. The nursing home is where aging parents are brought by their children who do not want to care for them, to live out their lives.
The fifth story is “An Orison of Sonmi~451”. This happens in 22nd century “Neo Seoul”. A female genetically engineered “fabricant” is being used by revolutionaries to be their figurehead for their rebellion against authorities. Among all the stories, An Orison of Sonmi~451 is the best.
The last story is “Sloosha’s Crossin” which takes place beyond the 22nd century; it is a post-apocalypse adventure. It is about a primitive tribesman who became friend with a technologically advanced woman. The tribesman made a bargain with the technologically advanced woman that changed both their lives.
The characters were played by Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Brodbent, Hugo Weaving, Jim Sturgess, Susan Sarandon and Korean actress Bae Doo Na. They all appear in different forms in the movie.
The movie is well done and highly recommended. It feels like a multiple film with the same actors reincarnated to play a role.