AVS Special Member
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: San Jose, California, USA
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Let me go on record here:
I'm NOT OFFENDED by actors playing other races via makeup. I never really was, I thought the Charlie Chan movies were fun, and I enjoyed the Fu Manchu books and films both.
I thought that most Tarzan films were racist for the way they stereotyped Blacks as cowardly and stupid, along with other Hollywood films of the era such as Gone With The Wind and Holiday Inn, and many others. But these racist films employed Black actors who were paid for their performances in Black roles. The racist sequences are jarring today, but these are still good movies, from a different time.
Cloud Atlas is a good film that stands on it's own without the source book, and necessarily must diverge from the book because the two media are so different. The race-bending makeup was both necessary and not offensive in any way IMHO. A little controversy is not a bad thing for either the ticket sales or BD sales.
I choose to buy the Cloud Atlas Blu-Ray disk and also to recommend it to others. I have mixed feelings about the film, I find in it several flaws, but these are the type of flaws that happen when talented movie-makers take bites that are slightly too big. The plotting was a little forced, the timing was off in several spots, the film was too long, yet it's hard to point to any scene that could be removed.
I suspect that with one more re-write, the script would have been better. I need to watch this excellent film a few more times to finalize my opinions about it. I suspect it will find a spot on my "Top Ten" SF films list.
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