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Headscratchers / Cloud Atlas

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  • Purebloods rely on fabricants to work for them as they have forgotten how. Why would Unanimity sic purebloods on fabricants for just a cover up which inevitably dooms everyone?
    • Unanimity was hoping that by causing purebloods to hate fabricants even more that even the moderate anti-slavery movement would be abolished and that there would be even more control over the fabricants and purebloods.

  • Perhaps not so much a headscratcher, but does Sonmi's genetic line survive to the events in Sloosha's Crossin' an' Ev'rythin' After and beyond? Do any escape Earth to the off-world colonies? The film does not give any direct clues as to whether the Sonmi-451's and Yoona-939s line survives, or any of the other fabricants. Is it possible that Zachrys sister Rose is directly descended from a fabricant herself?
    • The book implies that there was some kind fabricant revolution along with pureblood nuclear wars, and some descriptions of the slightly mutated looking humans might imply that fabricants found a way to reproduce and mixed with pureblood humans.

  • In the film, how exactly does the comet pass between people? (The Blu-Ray extras make it pretty clear that same actor = same soul) They do explain that Halle Berry got the comet from Ben Whishaw through sex, and using the same logic, Jim Sturgess and Ben Whishaw both travel on the ship in the first story, but the other three don't make any sense (especially between the fifth and sixth stories, since Tom Hanks has most likely already died and reincarnated by the time Somni sees the film he was in).
    • The comet represents us, the audience. The comet is on the protagonist of each story, just like the audience's attention.

  • Why does Goose concoct such a crazy con with such a tedious process? Wouldn't it have been much easier to yank the key off Ewing and then throw him overboard, claiming he fell off? Considering that Ewing, as the Captain points out, has little to zero seafaring experience, it's not that farfetched. And furthermore, did he even *try* to open the trunk without the key? It doesn't appear to have been terribly strong.
    • If you throw him overboard, somebody might see you do it. It's much better to just poison the guy.

  • Why is Zachry possessed with visions of the devil? No other character has this problem.
    • It could be something specific to him (like some sort of disorder), but the other people in his tribe could also have visions that we just don't see. They're relatively primitive and we don't know the details of the fall, so they might just have a hallucinogen (like ergot) in their diet or there could be something environmental that causes them (maybe some sort of radiation or signal from the communication station, which could be why he seemed to have them more as he got closer).
      • Notice the button. Notice this little blue button that becomes his necklace. Notice Georgie's coat. And notice the visions stopping after he loses the necklace. Neat, eh?
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    • Considering that pretty much everyone is mutated and dying on what's left of Earth, I took it at something physically wrong with him.

  • Why does the Unanimity use such an elaborate headpiece device to deliver essentially a captive bolt to the head?

    • It's used as a distraction to kill the Fabricants, under the guise of removing their collars. If it were just a simple shot through the head, the Fabricant would guess something is wrong.

  • Mauna Sol is apparently on Big Isle, which is in Hawaii. But it is the exact same location from which Sonmi~451 sent her transmission, which was in New Seoul, which is within view of Old Seoul, which 4,700 miles away from Hawaii. How is that possible?
    • You didn't notice that they took her away from Neo Seoul to a faraway island to make the transmission?

  • In the film, if the actors are meant to represent souls in reincarnation cycles, why is Ol' Georgie, who's either a hallucination or the Devil, played by Hugo Weaving? What does that indicate?
    • Hugo Weaving's characters always represented the "easy way out" in terms of difficult issues- he's also the embodiment of existing paradigm or system. His speech as both the plantation owner and police chief are not speeches about how he loves having slaves and being evil, but how he sees these things as being inherent in a system that he is apart of and upholds as being part of that system. So Hugo Weaving's reincarnating characters are the reincarnation of this concept of oppression in different forms, and while Georgie may not be as tangible as his other incarnations, he is the face for a way of life that is very real and very present. In each story, he represents the society or system or condition that oppresses, while our heroes represent those who seek change and freedom. Now, Georgie doesn't seem to represent an organization or lead the Kona at first, but their entire existence is just another society of oppression that he represents: the idea of social darwinism/strong feed on the weak at it's core, but now with all veneer of civilization stripped away. His speeches to Zachry are an attempt to force this concept- he should just give in to the way things are, and take the easy route- he should accept the world as it is, flee from those stronger than him, and feed on those weaker than him.

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