Cloud Atlas - Hollywood is Paying Attention To Mass Consciousness
Everybody receives the information they require, not only when they seek it, but when they need it most. The movie Cloud Atlas is based on universal and profound concepts relating to our existence throughout time. There is significant interest in this topic, possibly more than at any other time in recent history and Hollywood is listening. The heightened excitement regarding the theme is due to more people awakening to their reality...who we are and where we come from.
The film is an exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution.
Cloud Atlas is based on the 2004 novel, the third book by British author David Mitchell. [Spoiler - It consisted of six nested stories over a period of nearly 500 years, from 1850 to 2321. They take the reader from the remote South Pacific in the nineteenth century to a distant, post-apocalyptic future. Each tale is revealed to be a story that is read (or observed) by the main character in the next. The first five stories are interrupted at a key moment. After the sixth story, the other five stories are returned to and closed, in reverse chronological order, and each ends with the main character reading or observing the chronologically previous work in the chain. Eventually, readers end where they started, with Adam Ewing in the nineteenth century South Pacific.]
The Wachowskis love intricate narratives and the world of ideas; their Matrix trilogy was possibly the most ingenious of their productions and many believe it was not their own creation. Cloud Atlas appears to be another gem.
This heady stuff is given an intoxicating sense of individual purpose in the movie, where everything is connected across the years by an image, a phrase, a dream, the eponymous piece of music, as well as through a diary, a letter, a film, a book that passes on a predecessor's thought. It also asks how eternal recurrence can be changed by love and sacrifice, to thwart what appears to be a persistent cycle of cruelty, oppression and exploitation. One major role of culture is to offer spiritual consolation, especially in times of doubt and chaos, and Cloud Atlas clearly belongs alongside other mystical works that aspire to answer such needs at a higher, more sophisticated level than sentimental comfort.
thought-provoking quotes in the film:
"We cross and recross our old tracks like figure skaters."
"Belief, like fear or love, is a force to be understood as we understand the theory of relativity, and principles of uncertainty. Phenomena that determine the course of our lives. Yesterday, my life was headed in one direction. Today, it is headed in another. Yesterday, I believe I would never have done what I did today. These forces that often remake time and space, they can shape and alter who we imagine ourselves to be, begin long before we are born, and continue after we perish. Our lives and our choices, like quantum trajectories, are understood moment to moment, at each point of intersection, each encounter, suggest a new potential direction.
"Freedom. The fatuous jingle of our civilization. But only those deprived of it have the barest inkling of what it really is."
"To be is to be perceived. And so to know thyself is only possible through the eyes of the other. The nature of our immortal lives is in the consequences of our words and deeds, that go on and are pushing themselves throughout all time. Our lives are not our own, from womb to tomb, we're bound to others, past and present. And by each crime and every kindness, we birth our future."
"Don't worry, all is well. All is so perfectly, damnably well. I understand now, the boundaries between noise and sound are conventions. All boundaries are conventions waiting to be transcended. One may transcend any convention, if only one can first conceive of doing so. Moments like this, I can feel your heart beating as clearly as I've felt my own and I know that separation is an illusion. My life extends far beyond the limitations of me."
"I believe there is a another world waiting for us, Sixsmith. A better world. And I'll be waiting for you there."
"At this point in my life, all I know, Sixsmith, is that this world spins from the same unseen forces that twist our hearts."
"I understand now that boundaries between noise and sound are conventions. All boundaries are conventions, waiting to be transcended. One may transcend any convention, if only one can first conceive of doing so."
"You can maintain power over people, as long as you give them something. Rob a man of everything, and that man will no longer be in your power."
"What is a critic but one who reads quickly, arrogantly, but never wisely?"
"Knowledge is a mirror, and for the first time in my life, I was allowed to see who I was, and who I might become."
"Everything is connected"
Michael Forrester is a spiritual counselor and is a practicing motivational speaker for corporations in Japan, Canada and the United States.