As a fan of the book first, then the movie, thank you so much Avid4D for doing this edit! It was fascinating to see the stories unfold the way they do in the book. Stellar editing! I didn't think it would be possible but you made it work.
Have you seen the theatrical cut of Cloud Atlas? Did you enjoy it? No matter the answers to these questions, this is an edit worth seeking out. I, for one, did see the original and felt kind of "meh" about it. I like a lot of things about it, I dislike some things, but ultimately I feel like it doesn't earn its profundities. The new structure in this edit certainly makes it easier to follow, and spending more time with these characters instead of jumping away just as we get a handle on what's going on gives us more time to consider the meaning of what we're seeing. Unfortunately, it also wreaks havoc with the pacing, meaning you really feel the runtime. Also, in compartmentalizing the stories, it breaks up what was an unclassifiable meditation on life and humanity into a series of vignettes with wildly disparate tones. You'll be watching a romantic tragedy for a few minutes, then a comedy, then a sci-fi actioner, and so on. I like all of those things, but if you're not digging a particular story or style, you're going to be stuck watching it for a bit anyway, twice.
Aside from all of this, though, Cloud Atlas: Everything is Connected is a fascinating exercise in editing! When you consider that the film started life with a mosaic structure and a (gorgeous) ever-present soundtrack tying everything together, watching these bits and pieces reorganized into larger chunks that work on their own while still retaining much of the (gorgeous, truly) soundtrack is astounding. There are a (very) few moments where you can sense the edits or hear a bit of dialed-down soundtrack in the background, but they are few and far between and don't even come close to ruining the experience. This is an impressive edit, make no mistake.
I still don't think the movie is very successful in what it set out to do, but I believe it's still worth watching. Tom Tykwer and the Wachowski's shot the hell out of this movie, the production design is terrific, the cast all really went for it (Tom Hanks especially is a blast), the makeup while frequently distracting is still really interesting, and did I mention the score? So even if it's all a bunch of hooey, it's nonsense made by pros. Oh, and the HD MP4 looked great, no complaints.
This is a fantastic edit. At no point would somebody who has not seen the original realize that this is an edit. Others have commented that they did not like the fade to black between stories but I did not mind it at all. They are not jolting or distracting to me at all. There were no awkward audio transitions either and it all works extremely well.
A/V is excellent.
I highly recommend this edit and really don't have any complaints to mention.
Do you recommend this edit?
Thanks skyled.... appreciate you taking 3 hours out of your day to watch this and then to write a review! :)
The theatrical version of Cloud Atlas sits on my shelf, unwatched so far. It's a movie that was always on my radar, but I never got around to checking it out. So when I heard about this edit, and read the reviews, I went and bought a retail copy. But I wanted to watch this version before the theatrical, as it seemed that watching this edit could serve as a better introduction to the world of Cloud Atlas. It's a decision I don't regret.
The A/V quality of the HD file is fantastic. The narrative worked quite well, which is a good sign since I knew nothing about the original narrative going in. I will echo other reviews that mention some of the transitions between narratives being a bit rough...rough isn't necessarily the best word, as there weren't technical issues, but they did stand out a bit.
Enjoyment - 10/10. I really had fun watching this, and I'm looking forward to watching the theatrical for my second viewing.
The longer review goes like this... I'm always a fan of epic movies and tend to have no problem enjoying what the mainstream doesn't always get, which made me believe I would love Cloud Atlas. I couldn't have been more wrong. I like unfolding stories, I like having to figure things out, but Cloud Atlas gives so few clues as to what's going on, I quit 30 minutes in. I have not read the book, which would probably helped in understanding the story, but ultimately that would have also showed the flaws of the story's conversion to screen.
Thank goodness for Fanedits and thank you Avid4D for this fantastic edit! I now love this movie and may go back to watch the theatrical version, just to see if I like it any better than my initial viewing.
For a more detailed breakdown of the story, actors, book to film comparison, and other components, check out Santiagoqu's review.