directed by Tom Tykwer, Andy & Lana Wachowski
Babe Ruth points to center field in the sixth inning of Game 3. Next pitch, he knocks the hell out of that ball and where does it go? Into the center field bleachers. Bambino’s homer goes from amazing to legendary. What if the ball had hit the center field fence instead? Would it have been any less spectacular? This analogy kept running through my mind as I watched the end credits roll on Cloud Atlas, the big old experience of a film from the ambitious talent of Ton Tykwer, Andy and Lana Wachowski. Tykwer and the Wachowskis clearly pointed to center field in bringing to life the story of entangled existence and cosmic fatalism, and while the film didn’t fly over the fence, I had to give the trio a hearty ovation for at least giving it a go. The sets and cinematography alone are enough to whisk you up in the razzle dazzle of a true blue experience, but despite the best efforts of a great cast (Ben Whishaw and Doona Bae were especially wonderful), I never felt truly caught up in the moment of the story itself. What it may lack in terms of overall cohesion, it makes up for in ambition, and while I don’t think merits any awards, I was glad I caught it on the big screen. A real Grinch could pick it to pieces, for the film has its problems, but Grinches are like rain at a picnic. And who likes that?