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Cloud Atlas

2 h 51 min2012X-Ray15
A single story that unfolds in multiple timelines over the span of 500 years. Characters meet and reunite in different eras. Featuring an all-star cast led by Tom Hanks and Halle Berry.
Lilly WachowskiLana WachowskiTom Tykwer
Tom HanksHalle BerryJim Broadbent
Science FictionSuspenseActionAdventure
English [CC]
Audio Languages
EnglishEnglish [Audio Description]
Rentals include 30 days to start watching this video and 48 hours to finish once started.
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Supporting actors
Hugo WeavingJim SturgessDoona BaeBen WhishawJames D'ArcyXun ZhouKeith DavidDavid GyasiSusan SarandonHugh Grant
Grant HillStefan Arndt
Content advisory
Smokingsubstance usealcohol usenudityfoul languagesexual contentviolence
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Available to watch on supported devices


4.0 out of 5 stars

3559 global ratings

  1. 57% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 16% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 9% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 6% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 11% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United Kingdom

Mr. W. E. WardReviewed in the United Kingdom on 04 August 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
It is easy to understand why so many reviews of this film are negative...
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It is easy to understand why so many reviews of this film are negative, the film challenges on so many levels that it can be hard to grasp what is happening. We are challenged about the nature and structure of both film and story, challenged to suspend disbelief with so many actors filling multiple roles, challenged to join the dots across the different stories, different ages, for ourselves - the film really does not hold our hand as it asks us to do this. I guess the movie industry found this film challenging too, as it is - in my opinion - a travesty that not only did it not win an Oscar it wasn't even nominated - shame on you Hollywood.

The very first time I saw Cloud Atlas I honestly could not decide if it was the best film I had ever seen or the worst - and that was a view shared by several friends who also saw the film. My mind told me it was disjointed, and deliberately abstruse, but my heart told there was a real gem here, if only I had the patience to find it. It took a second viewing, but I am so glad I had that patience.

Because ultimately I think this is easily one of the best movies I have ever seen. Not only in what it does, what story it tells, what it teaches us of the human condition - but also, and perhaps more importantly, how it does it. I genuinely think that in 25-30 years this will be seen as a genre redefining movie. And maybe, if we are really lucky, it will be seen as a part of the process that enabled us to see our better selves.

If I could give more than 5 stars I would, without hesitation. It is, in my opinion, a work of genius.
110 people found this helpful
hamptoncherryReviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 August 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Probably not for everybody but give it a go. it may surprise you.
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Well, I will not pretend I understood everything in this film. It is long, complicated and the interaction between each part is not always clear. But goodness it is beautifully done. Abolition of slavery, nuclear technology, nomadic tribes, futuristic Seoul, XIX century musical genius, old folks trying to escape from the "retirement home" and life for humans on another planet. These are all parts connected via choices we make in life. And some blooming good acting too. I would add to the equation some decent chases and shootings in Seoul of XXXX - something century as well.

I think the main idea is if you help somebody it starts a chain of events that connect in some unpredictable way in the past as well as in the future.
So glad to say this is a good way above your average Hollywood creation.
35 people found this helpful
J. GolubcovReviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 August 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
A brilliant masterpiece!!!
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I think that this movie is a masterpiece!!! A brilliant masterpiece enriching our collective human effort on this planet we call Earth!!! It shines light on how our individual choices,decisions,believes and effort on the things we decide to hold dear to us make the difference and create the common future for us all...and out children and our children's children. I think this type of understanding of humanity is what should be thought in schools. You do find it spread across many books and ideological movements ,however I think this movie puts it all together in one very good package. It's the second time I've watched this movie and I find it gorgeously glorious. (plus I live in Edinburgh and seeing the glimpses of the city remake from the past is very exciting also.)
24 people found this helpful
AMReviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 April 2020
1.0 out of 5 stars
Can't make up your mind about this film? Let me help ...
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I watched ... I persisted ... God I tried! For those who ask 'was it good .. was it bad??' ... it was bad. Despite the attempt to create complexity, under the expensive veneer was unoriginal, mawkish nothing. I really like Tom Hanks but he must have been all out of better offers to accept this script. In fact, Hanks could have read more into a restaurant menu than this. I'd love to think that it would have been half as bad if it had been half as long, but I doubt even if brevity would help. This is definitely a film to avoid. If you have an untidy sock drawer, go sort that out instead.
11 people found this helpful
ShirleyReviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 July 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Transcends boundaries of all genres
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Like many other viewers, I stopped watching after 30 minutes.

Baffled and bemused, I read the glowing reviews wondering if I'd missed anything, then stumbled upon an 'explanation'. It started to make sense and sounded intriguing so I tried again and went on to watch 3 times.
With each viewing I found more hidden gems and links that I'd missed before.

*** SPOILER ***

In short you have a cocktail of a 19th century sea voyage with a slavery abolition movement; an English music period drama; 70s crime thriller; modern day comedy of a retired publisher; futuristic Korean Matrix; and a dystopian new earth epic fantasy. . All storylines exist in non-linear time, as souls pass from one body to another they progress, regress or remain stagnant depending on their karmic decisions, whilst influencing events in other lifetimes.

A must watch to at least appreciate the cast switch ages, genders and races over probably the most extreme character arcs they will likely ever play. Wonderfully interwoven and beautifully filmed, it is also stunningly detailed and well ahead of its time. Like some of the main characters, I also became hooked to the soundtrack.

PS It helped to keep the cursor arrow over the optional cast list on the left of the screen for the duration of the movie to help me keep up with who the actors were!
5 people found this helpful
Lawrence WrayReviewed in the United Kingdom on 07 August 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Exceptionally rewarding.
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I went into it with my eyes wide open after reading some of the reviews, and yes, it's one of those movies where you come away wiser than before. I watched it on a Saturday night and again on the Monday night, and the second time was as if I had a secret key that unlocked all the hidden mysteries within. I suppose from that it's safe to say that if I watched it twice, then it has to be worthwhile. It's six stories within a story, all interlinked and all different. There is a host of acting's finest, but for me, Mr Broadbent stole the show. Don't waste your time if you're not going to commit to the experience, but if you do, it's exceptionally rewarding.
22 people found this helpful
mark gibsonReviewed in the United Kingdom on 03 March 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Engage brain, open mind -enjoy .
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It took about 30 minutes for me to grasp the concept and tune into the time /space shifts but after that I was totally hooked . Magnificent film that repays all of your attention - and , yes , you need all of your attention to appreciate the underlying continuity.
Wonderful character acting throughout with a script that draws you into every person's story in an evocative , engaging way .
As I loved the multi-layered meanings and possibilities in The Matrix the same applies here and I'm sure that I'll watch this for at least one more time to pick over the bones and enjoy yet more depth and nuance .
So impressed I've just ordered David Mitchell's book - if it stands up that will be one great author to add to the list.
15 people found this helpful
VicuñaReviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 December 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Puzzling but ultimately rewarding film
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I’ve read a few books by David Mitchell, who wrote the Cloud Atlas novel ( which I haven’t read). Without exception, he pushes boundaries in terms of the themes he explores and in his narrative construction. He’s an exceptional writer and I’m surprised he has received wider acclaim.

I have no idea how the film compares to the book; I’ve just downloaded the Audible version to see if it helps improve my understanding of this complex drama which plays out over aeons. I know that Mitchell is interested in the idea of multiple lives and parallel timelines and in some ways, those themes are explored here as numerous individuals are seen in different lives over many centuries. One of the main ideas is a belief that what’s seeded in one life grows in another. It’s a film which defies explanation and one which requires attention and more than one viewing.

There are some exceptional performances and I’m surprised that the film wasn’t nominated for awards. I found one of Tom Hanks characters quite difficult to understand as he seemed to mumble and was also speaking English with a different grammatical construction. I got the gist of the conversations but his diction was poor. Other than that, this I’ll is outstanding. Give it a go and prepare to be challenged.
2 people found this helpful
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