July 27, 2012
The first trailer/extended look at Cloud Atlas, a new science fiction venture from Tom Tykwer and the Wachowski brothers — the guys behind The Matrix trilogy — dropped online earlier today, and it’s both visually dazzling and incredibly confusing at times, only because of the complexity of its plot. It’s not easy to explain exactly what Cloud Atlas is about, but here’s a glance at a synopsis:
“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.”
Head over to Apple now to get a look at the trailer (Warner Bros. is preventing it from reaching places like YouTube) and then come back for a short breakdown.
The film boasts a stellar cast, including Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugo Weaving, Ben Whishaw, Hugh Grant, Susan Sarandon, and Jim Sturgess. The film seems to deal heavily with the idea of reincarnation, as well as the cyclical nature of the human experience. People’s actions can directly impact the lives of others in the present and the future, and we’ll see that in the film, as the different actors take on the roles of different characters (noticeable mainly through Hanks and Berry) at vastly different periods of time. The film itself spans several centuries and runs for over three hours, giving it plenty of time to unveil its very detailed and thought-provoking plot.
It certainly was a steep undertaking for the Wachowskis, but they’ve been renowned for their science fiction prowess ever since The Matrix debuted over a decade ago and changed the genre forever. They don’t appear to be holding anything back this time around, as not only does Cloud Atlas look to provide a mind-bending story that might speak to the higher powers that some believe help govern our lives, but remarkable visuals that will help to further cement it as one of the more ambitious sci-fi films in recent history.
A few other notes: