Future. Present. Past. Everything is connected. 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. The story is a time-shifting weave of six interlinking narratives, with diverse settings from the savagery of a Pacific Island in the 1850s to a dystopian Korea of the near future.
This movie is an adaptation of David Mitchell’s acclaimed epic novel. I heard about this movie for the first time when I saw its movie trailer last year. I was attracted by the idea that its storyline spread across several centuries, but most interestingly, that it revolved around reincarnation – the concept that souls are continuously reborn in different bodies.
My personal tidbits:
– This movie is 171 minutes long — almost three hours long… woah!
– The scenes continuously jump from one narrative to another throughout the movie (keeping the viewer constantly guessing/trying to figure out and understand the link between each narrative).
– Some of the characters from one narrative to another are played by the same actor, allowing the viewer to clearly understand that the actor is playing the multiple incarnations of one particular “soul” throughout the different intricate narratives of the story. However, this is not always the case. The use of a shooting star birth mark, for example, on the skin of some other characters allows the viewers to “follow” the incarnation cycles of one particular soul played by different actors.
– The dialogue in the last narrative (i.e. the post-apocalyptic future) uses a form of pidgin English, which at first I couldn’t understand… which is why I decided to watch the movie a second time with english subtitles (!!!) to understand what the characters where saying.
– My personal rating of this movie is 6.5 on 10.
– I bought David Mitchell’s novel and I plan to read it sometime. My gut tells me that the reading experience will allow me to better understand the author’s work.
While doing some research on this movie on the web, I came across this good review from Philip French from The Observer (February 24th, 2013). It’s worth reading if you’d like to know more about the movie.