Cloud Atlas Reviews

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David Thomson
The New Republic
June 14, 2013
Whatever your age, even if life is an ocean made up of many drops, you may resolve that life is too short for this errant nonsense.
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Tom Huddleston
Time Out
February 20, 2013
A film which piles on the action, the romance, the philosophical inquiry and the silly accents until the viewer is left punch-drunk and reeling. Seriously, what's not to love?
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
October 28, 2012
They key to successfully absorbing the movie may be in not trying to overthink what's on screen.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Christopher Orr
The Atlantic
October 26, 2012
An eminently peculiar mismatch of substance and form, like a Hallmark card written by David Foster Wallace.
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Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
October 26, 2012
The result is maddening, exasperating, occasionally exhilarating -- and mostly boring.
Full Review | Original Score: C
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
October 26, 2012
For all the spectacular settings and visionary designs, Cloud Atlas left me feeling disconnected
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
October 26, 2012
Felicitous moments can't break through the dark nebula of self-importance around Cloud Atlas ...
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Rafer Guzman
Newsday
October 26, 2012
Sumptuous visuals and audacious acting, but the quasi-profound message of cosmic connectedness isn't worth all the trouble.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Tom Long
Detroit News
October 26, 2012
Exciting, exhausting and energizing, a brazen film that leaves somber cinema seeming too passive for its own good. This is a movie as big as life itself.
Full Review | Original Score: A+
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Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
October 26, 2012
"Cloud Atlas" deserves praise if only for not being the baggy, pretentious disaster it could have been in other hands.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Anthony Lane
New Yorker
October 25, 2012
he best thing about Cloud Atlas is that it could, and should, turn into a properly divisive film... but one has to ask: does it allow for immersion? Even as we applaud the dramatic machinery, are we being kept emotionally at bay?
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Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
October 25, 2012
It will aid your experience of the swirling, sweeping dramatic adventure Cloud Atlas, if you embrace the idea of being a little bit lost.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
October 25, 2012
Enormous in length and scope, a film whose purpose doesn't even begin to come into focus until two hours in.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Claudia Puig
USA Today
October 25, 2012
The cumulative effect is one of spectacle over substance.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Richard Roeper
Richard Roeper.com
October 25, 2012
It's a polarizing, ambitious, sometimes beautiful and occasionally maddening epic.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Dana Stevens
Slate
October 25, 2012
Galumphing and heavy-handed, its rare flights of lyricism stranded between long stretches of outright risibility.
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Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
October 25, 2012
It's funny, violent and prodigiously romantic; it has immense heart and more gorgeous cinematic moments than I can describe.
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
October 25, 2012
It plays like a gargantuan trailer for a movie still to be made (one that, given the same ratio, would be 86 hours long).
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
October 25, 2012
Finally, what sinks "Cloud Atlas" is not the largeness of its ambitions but the lack of skill it displays in terms of writing, directing and acting.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
October 25, 2012
Did you hear the one about the Zen master who walks up to a hot dog cart, scans the menu, and asks the vendor to "make me one with everything"?
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
October 25, 2012
"Cloud Atlas" offers more answers than it does questions, and by the end of its nearly three-hour running time - which flies by surprisingly fast, all things considered - it feels like the most feverishly expensive late-night college bull session ever.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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October 25, 2012
Cloud Atlas is now a film, for better or worse. Mostly worse I'd say, but give these folks credit ...
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Peter Howell
Toronto Star
October 25, 2012
Cloud Atlas creates awe about worlds seen and unseen, frequently bypassing the brain on the way to the heart and soul.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
October 25, 2012
Take a collection of stories, connect them through portentous themes and watch it all spin. We've seen it before -Babel, anyone? - but nothing is quite like the daft, brazenly ambitious cosmic fantasia ofCloud Atlas.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
October 25, 2012
Three directors, plus six story lines, times five centuries equals one grandly conceived, impressively mounted megaflop.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
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Kyle Smith
New York Post
October 25, 2012
It isn't as complicated as it thinks.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
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Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
October 25, 2012
For all its strengths, the film is cursed by an ADD-style structure and a flashy but inevitably ineffective casting stunt.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
October 25, 2012
"Cloud Atlas" is superior filmmaking. Yes, it runs almost three hours - but you've probably seen 90-minute films that felt a lot longer.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Karina Longworth
L.A. Weekly
October 25, 2012
One man's ambitious, iconoclastic, like-nothing-ever-before-seen passion project is another man's Battlefield Earth.
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J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
October 25, 2012
An incomprehensible mess, held together only by the elaborate stunt of having the same actors play wildly divergent roles in each story.
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
October 25, 2012
There are moments when it works wonderfully, but too many where it feels overlong and ponderous.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
October 25, 2012
If the talented Wachowskis are ever going to achieve true artistic nirvana, they're going to have to be more disciplined with their grand ideas, more ruthless in their rewrites.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Glenn Kenny
MSN Movies
October 25, 2012
It's kind of astonishing that for all its ambition and accomplishment, and for the ostensibly subversive philosophy it pushes, "Cloud Atlas" ends up being just another platitudinous overblown pummel-you-into-submission movie-machine.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
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Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
October 25, 2012
The movie doesn't really work, but it's fascinating in the ways it doesn't.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Keith Phipps
AV Club
October 25, 2012
It's an imperfect film of great daring and tremendous humanity, a work of many stories, but a singular achievement.
Full Review | Original Score: B
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A.O. Scott
New York Times
October 25, 2012
This is by no means the best movie of the year, but it may be the most movie you can get for the price of a single ticket.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
October 25, 2012
Surely this is one of the most ambitious films ever made.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
October 25, 2012
If you're interested in the sheer craft of filmmaking, Cloud Atlas is required viewing - a rare example of a movie getting by entirely on technique and creative bravado.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
October 24, 2012
Cloud Atlas is a cornily enthralling sci-fi kaleidoscope.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Alonso Duralde
TheWrap
October 24, 2012
It's a puzzle I enjoyed piecing together, but when each tale came to a close and built up to what was intended to be a soaring, emotional climax, I felt no flutter in the chest or tingle up my spine.
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Rex Reed
New York Observer
October 24, 2012
A trash heap of rubber noses and implausible high school accents that give new meaning to the word "pretentious."
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
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Charlie McCollum
San Jose Mercury News
October 24, 2012
"Cloud Atlas" is a film where the creators' admirable reach exceeds their grasp. You may be getting six films for the cost of one, but it may not really be worth the price.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Nick Pinkerton
Village Voice
October 23, 2012
There is a great deal of humbug about art and love in Cloud Atlas, but it is decidedly unlovable, and if you want to learn something about feeling, you're at the wrong movie.
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Christy Lemire
Associated Press
October 23, 2012
A bloated, pseudo-intellectual, self-indulgent slog through some notions that are really rather facile.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
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Keith Uhlich
Time Out
October 23, 2012
These disparate tales have been listlessly smashed together in the hopes that something substantial will emerge.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
October 22, 2012
The cast comes off like a third-rate stock company on the matinee after the night on which everyone got bombed on mescal (and possibly mescaline).
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Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
September 12, 2012
The feeling persists that Tykwer and the Wachowskis made the picture to prove they could.
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Peter Debruge
Variety
September 11, 2012
An intense three-hour mental workout rewarded with a big emotional payoff.
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James Rocchi
MSN Movies
September 10, 2012
It is so full of passion and heart and empathy that it feels completely unlike any other modern film in its range either measured through scope of budget or sweep of action.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Jordan Mintzer
Hollywood Reporter
September 9, 2012
Everything gets homogenized into a blandish whole, the impact of each story softened by the constant need to connect the dots.
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Jordan Hoffman
Film.com
September 9, 2012
'Cloud Atlas' is like the entire 'Matrix' trilogy in micro. It starts out absolutely brilliantly, then segues into a pretentious slog.
Full Review | Original Score: C+