Cloud Atlas Infographic Shows How The Myriad Characters Are Connected

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Cloud“Everything is connected.” Remember Cloud Atlas? The latest film from the Wachowskis and German director Tom Tykwer was probably the most ambitious film of 2012. Although the film was a colossal box office disappointment, the genre hybrid film still managed to capture the imagination of many. One of the reasons why the film didn’t perform well in theaters was its three-hour running time and time-jumping narrative structure.

General audiences found Cloud Atlas to be just too weird. Now that it’s out on Blu-ray/DVD, hopefully Cloud Atlas will find a new audience. Warner Bros. has released an infographic with the home entertainment release of Cloud Atlas, which should help people follow along with the film’s complicated narrative structure. Check it out below. (Click the picture for a larger version you can actually read.)

Cloud Atlas Infographic

The Cloud Atlas infographic features all of the film’s major characters in their specific storyline and time period. It shows how each character is connected to the others throughout history. It also notes the narrative devices (a journal, letter, or film) that connect each storyline. It’s pretty comprehensive and in-depth.

Last year, Cinema Blend’s Kristy Puchko released her own Cloud Atlas infographic that highlights each character connection in the ambitious film. Although both infographics are very different, both prove that Cloud Atlas is the type of film you really have to think about before you pass judgment. It’s by no means a conventional piece of work.

Cloud Atlas stars Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent, Hugo Weaving, Jim Sturgess, Doona Bae, Ben Whishaw, James D’Arcy, Zhou Xun, Keith David, David Gyasi, Susan Sarandon, and Hugh Grant. Each actor played multiple roles that crossed gender, age, and race, which is probably another reason why general audiences weren’t sure what to make of the film.

The Wachowskis next film, Jupiter Ascending is due out on July 25, 2014. They’re also collaborating with Babylon 5‘s J. Michael Straczynski on a new science fiction series for Netflix, Sense8.


  1. Stan says:

    “One of the reasons why the film didn’t perform well in theaters was its
    three-hour running time and time-jumping narrative structure.”

    Some where in Cloud Atlas was a fine well made film with interlocking stories,but the delivery was a complete mess.In fact I felt cheated because I couldn’t enjoy each of them with all the jumping around.I give the maker’s credit for a good try but it failed miserably .There are many things you can do in a book that don’t translate well to film,this was a perfect example.Anytime you try to use a “gimmick” in telling a story you had better use a light touch and not beat the audience to death with it,it quickly becomes boring.Also, cramming it into just three hours didn’t help.
    If they ever attempt to re-edit Cloud Atlas I would be very interesting in seeing the result.I have no doubt it could still deliver it message and gain critical claim.

    • Aaron J. Kelly says:

      I actually agree with Stan, which rarely happens. In my opinion, this would have made a great HBO special with such structure as Band of Brothers. It would have had a more complete feeling involved and kept me watching for sure. Tom Hanks worst performance I have ever seen, made me wish for a cast of unknowns, as well as replacing Halle Barry (however its spelled)

      • Stan says:

        “I actually agree with Stan, which rarely happens.”
        Just as long as it doesn’t become a habit ,how boring would that be

        • Aaron J. Kelly says:

          Just, you know…try not to have, like… the same opinion as me dude…

          • Stan says:

            I don’t think that will be a problem,Aaron.Our personal tastes and
            dislikes are formed over a lifetime of experiences and learning.Two
            people rarely see things the same way,which is what makes it all so
            interesting and entertaining.

  2. Brian H says:

    The Wachowskis have a knack for making kitchy tacky **** if they’re given too much free reign. Think about the weird underground mosh pit city in the second Matrix film and then think about the God-awful “future-Hawaii” accent and Tom Hanks’ performances in the portions of this film directed by them. The Neo-Seoul segment was admittedly them at their best (but they managed to get a stupid and dated feeling grunge influenced underground into that one too) but other than that all of the best parts of Cloud Atlas (Scotland, San Francisco, UK) were directed by the other guy (forget his name)

    • Adam Ewing says:

      This was definitely not an example of them with “too much free reign”. All of the accents and dialects in the movie were taken straight from the novel. Most of the dialogue was taken verbatim.

      The novel actually took it further, in that the *prose* of each section, not just the dialogue, was written in that style. The section titled “The Pacific Journal of Adam Ewing” was written as an excerpt from such a work, for example, and even ended in the middle of a sentence, as if from a book that had been torn in half.

      If you don’t like the speech used in the movie, you should complain that the directors took too *little* free reign over the content.