Reviews written by registered user
|2 reviews in total|
Finally we have the Maori action movie we have all been begging for! If you have ever seen the Haka performed by the All Blacks, and wondered what these guys would do to their enemies without the limitations of Rugby rules, then all your questions will be answered. The plot is a Kung Fu style revenge tale. A young chief's son vows revenge for some tribal treachery, and hooks up with a mystical, wiser warrior, to take out a small army of baddies. Action movie aficionados will be pleased to see some authentic Maori weapons and fighting choreography, instead of the typical blade weapons and the Asian martial arts we see in countless movies these days. The acting is fascinating because you are basically watching actors represent their own culture from an earlier era, unlike let's say, having a Scottish man portray an ancient Greek warrior in a film. The authentic locations add to the overall realistic effect as well. I'm sure there are artistic liberties taken with the historical accuracy, but nothing as crazy as the 300 franchise. The directing is a bit frantic, with quick cuts and lots of camera movements during fight scenes, but that seems to be the visual style for action movies these days. Overall, this film is a fascinating look at a culture that is completely exotic to the rest of the world because of vast geographical distance and centuries of colonial influence.
Kudos to all the filmmakers for adapting this famously "unfilmable"
novel in such an inventive way. There are SIX separate timelines that
switch after every scene, but instead of the plot, the narrative
continuity follows the theme of the film. Once you clue in to that
overall theme, it is no longer confusing when the story jumps from a
runaway slave in the 1800s to a post apocalyptic future battle between
some of the last humans remaining on earth.
All this audacious style and structure makes Cloud Atlas a curiosity to say the least, but the film is lifted to the realm of "Masterpiece" by the all-star ensemble cast. This impressive collection of actors fires off amazing performances like the Expendables 2 fires off high caliber bullets. I mean this will long be considered one of the greatest acting clinics ever filmed, and a high point in some already outstanding careers, as the end credits alone are astonishing to watch.
Overall this is a movie that transcends the simple elements of stars and plots and special effects, and boldly assumes to take the cinema to another level of storytelling, much like Avatar took film to a new level of technology a few years ago. The ambition, the technical brilliance and the passion that was put into this film makes it one of the great epics of our time.