‘Cloud Atlas’ – SR Underground Ep. 63

Published 2 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 10:25 pm,

Screen Rant Underground Podcast Header Cloud Atlas   SR Underground Ep. 63

Bonus: Make sure to check out our candid “review scale” discussion video from SDCC 2012 further down in the post.

The Screen Rant editorial team is back with episode sixty-three of the Screen Rant Underground.

Join host Ben Kendrick as well as fellow SR editors Rob Keyes, Anthony Ocasio, Kofi Outlaw, and special guest Roth Cornet as we review Cloud Atlas, discuss the rumored casting of Idris Elba as the next James Bond, and answer listener e-mails.

Screen Rant Underground is available on the iTunes Music StoreStitcher Radio, or the Zune/Windows Phone Marketplace but if you’re not near your home computer, check out our sixty-third episode in the player below.

Also, Screen Rant Underground is an EXPLICIT podcast. We don’t go out of our way to say controversial things or use explicit language but it does happen – so use discretion when playing the podcast at work and around young, or sensitive, ears.


Screen Rant Underground: Episode 63 – Cloud Atlas

In episode 63 of the Screen Rant Underground podcast we review Cloud Atlas, discuss the rumored casting of Idris Elba as the next James Bond, as well as answer listener e-mails.

[0:00] News: Idris Elba rumored as the next James Bond (plus a discussion of race and gender in franchise entertainment).

[47:36] Pre-Review Box Office Battle.

[52:32] Review: Cloud Atlas (read our full Cloud Atlas review).

[1:15:10] Cloud Atlas SPOILERS conversation (join in the Cloud Atlas spoilers discussion).

[1:34:30] Listener E-mails (Dream Movie & How We Approach Reviews), Twitter Handles, and Contact Information.

[2:01:30] Game Rant News Brief: G4 Cancels video Game Shows, 300 Armor in God of War: Ascension, Assassin’s Creed 3 and 4 editorials, MechWarrior Online Preview, plus Doom 3 BFG Edition, Worms: Revolution, and The Walking Dead: Episode 4 reviews.

Hosts: Ben Kendrick, Rob Keyes, Anthony Ocasio, and Kofi Outlaw – with special guest Roth Cornet.



Bonus: In the podcast we discuss how we approach reviewing films and shows (in the reader e-mail section). As a fun supplement to that conversation, I’ve also included a candid piece of Comic-Con 2012 footage where we discuss the Screen Rant rating scale (and once again give Kofi a hard time about the Battleship review).

Check out the video below which does contain EXPLICIT language and features (from left to right) Kofi Outlaw, Ben Kendrick, Rob Keyes, Sandy Schaefer, and Vic Holtreman:

Next Week’s Review: Wreck-It-Ralph

Last Week’s Reader Box Office Battle Winner (Paranormal Activity 4 Opening Weekend): The Mighty Avenger

Use the comment section below to continue our various discussions by weighing in with your own thoughts – or just to let us know what you think of the show. Also, don’t forget to vote in our weekly Screen Rant Underground poll:


[poll id=426]


We release one episode a week every Monday and while host Ben Kendrick as well as Rob Keyes, Anthony Ocasio, and Kofi Outlaw are standard fare on the podcast, we’ve lined-up plenty of guests for future episodes.

Subscribe to the Screen Rant Underground at your online digital store of choice:

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If you don’t use iTunesStitcher Radio, or the Zune/Windows Phone Marketplace you can still say up to date with new releases by bookmarking the Underground RSS feed – or keep an eye on the site for future Underground episode posts.


Follow 3/4 of the Screen Rant Underground team @benkendrick, @rob_keyes, and @anthonyocasio. Also, feel free to contact us with questions and other insights at underground@screenrant.com, by adding #SRUnderground to your tweets, or leave a message on the SR Underground voicemail line at (323) 522-5455.

Music by Omarie B. Williams (@OmarieWilliams)

Edited by Justin Vactor (@Vactor)

Make sure to check out ScreenRant.com and GameRant.com for entertainment news, reviews, and editorials.

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  1. A few things…
    1. Charlie Chan – Warner Oland or Peter Ustinov
    2. Breakfast at Tiffany’s – Mickey Rooney

    “Salt” started out as a man and was changed to a woman when they hired Angelina Jolie.

  2. 1. Wreck-It-Ralph
    2. Cloud Atlas
    3. Flight
    4. Argo
    5. The Man With The Iron Fist
    10. Sinister

  3. 1 – Wreck It Ralph
    2 – Flight
    3 – Argo
    4 – The Man With Iron Fists
    5 – Cloud Atlas
    10 – PA 4

  4. Okay first off Idris Elba cant have every black person role.
    Second off why cant we just compromise by making him 008, I mean Im not a bond fan but nobody buys that craig is bond they just refer to him as craig or 007. So why not from now on with each agent give them a new number.
    Second there are characters who cant be black because they are white in their original creation by their original creator. For example sherlock holmes, now he can be portrayed by a black actor and thats fine but we all know holmes is white so im afraid he just be referred to as the black version and since sherlock is one of those done to death characters its already hard to put a new spin on him and I feel the race change would be the only thing anybody would notice.

    and Thirdly as for the whole woman thing, no, just no. Elementary already showed that a female watson adds nothing new so why even bother. And I side with anthony with the dr. who example that some characters are defined by their characteristics, which yes includes gender.

  5. I listened to this with my black, English colleague. And he agreed with me, to wit, Bond is a w.a.s.p. and Kofi, calling me a bigot for suggesting that, is himself a bigot.
    Kofi is a cultural fascist, placing his owm cultutal heroes (real or imagined) above other cultural icons
    Jus because Idris Elba is black and English doesn’t make him a ideal choice to play Bond. Fassbender is a better fit.
    Kofi insists that if Bond was black in C.R. or QOS it would not have made a difference.
    Of course it would have made a difference!! It would have meant that a white, British, cultural hero was now black!! It would have meant the denial of 50 years of movie history. It would have meant the disregard of Fleming’s wartime heroics, and it would have meant the contempt for worldwide audiences expecting a traditionall white, male, British fictional character.
    Kofi goes on to say rhat in 10 years time it will not matter what race,colour or gender Bond is because we will have moved on. That is a very PC, quasi-psychic, freshman idea. And it is bull!
    He refuses to accept that Bond is a white, English icon and with the same breath has said that Shaft is identifiably black. As if Bond is not and has never been identifiably white.
    Kofi you then go on to descrie people who disagree with you as playing at top trumps baseball cards. I would suggest that that is entirely the game you are playing!!!
    I have watched all the series of the wire and luther. I have seen prometheus and thor. Elba is a very good actor, but he is NOT a great actor, but then neither was Connery, Lazenby, Moore or Brosnan…but they were at least white!
    You mock the idea that Bond cannot be other than white and male, opening the door to a black, lesbian Bond. How much further are you willing to go to trample over a nations beloved icon to satisfy your ridiculous PC agenda? Just because a black actor is a good actor does’t mean he should take on traditionally white roles.
    I’m not talking about roles that have a recent history. i’m talking about roles that have historically white actoes playing white characters. I’m thinking Bond, Tarzan, Sherlock, Robin Hood. Would you sugget that Robin Hood is intransegently white but Bond isn’t despite 50 years of hi being so? I suggest you would to buttress your ridiculous cultural fascist pc agenda.
    I am Scottish and British. I know who James Bond is…and he isn’t black. That is fact.

    • Having had days to think about this, here is the real “fact”:

      Producers talked to an actor they felt would be good for the role – for reasons ranging from making a quality film to appealing to a wider demographic. They approached what they thought would be a QUALIFIED INDIVIDUAL. They haven’t said “We’re making Bond Black” and lined up Chris Tucker, Anthony Mackie, Will Smith, Denzel Washington AND Idris Elba – they reached out to AN ACTOR THEY THINK WOULD FIT THE ROLE.

      The immediate reaction “No, he’s not qualified – because he’s black” is a form of discrimination to me. A man is being considered based on his merits as a person and being refuted on the basis of his skin color. So you can justify it with whatever reasoning you want – and so can your black friend – but this is the truth, and I consider that a form of racism.

      And I’ll be a facist – one that is unbending in his stance against idiocy and bigotry. I’m not democratic about foolish small-minded opinions – you are absolutely right.

      As I said in the podcast – there are those who would argue “this school has always been whites only – so it should stay whites only. When they built it, they built it for whites – now you’re just trying to change it for the sake of changing it.”

      Glad that mentally didn’t prevail during every Civil Rights Movement in history…

  6. You guys need to hire a black guy just to get a different perspective in your pod cast……..like me ;)

    • I am black.

      • My Mistake…..

    • Wow! lol

  7. And Frankly, some of you accusing me of fascism or monopolizing this discussion need to go back and listen.

    A) I never pushed to be the one to introduce this story and talk first – I was handed that task by Ben the moderator five minutes before we began.

    B) If the discussion felt one-sided, it’s because the other members didn’t really voice their own views or opinions – they kept bouncing questions off of me, the one African-American in the group. Only Roth really stepped up and said anything she believed, and mostly that was “Couldn’t it be a woman, as well?”

    I was basically made the man in the middle, and if I sound defensive and/or angry in the podcast, it’s partly because It was early morning, I WAS having to defend myself, and I was still raw from DAYS of our comment threads being flooded with ignorant opinions and actual racism (of the N-word variety and beyond).

    Did I express myself in the best way I wanted? No. Will I write an article now, that attempts to do so better? You Freaking betcha.

    Hopefully we can go forward and get back to movie talk.

    • I think you did a fantastic job of articulating your argument and illustrating your perspective, Kofi.

      Having said that: I hope I said a few more things than “couldn’t it be a woman?” And for me it’s not so much about wanting a female Bond but more that raising the question helps to illustrate a bit about gender depictions in film, in general terms.

      I don’t necessarily want female roles that are masculine. I’d just love to see more strong/interesting/dynamic female roles (which we do see more of these days, sure, but there is still room for growth.)

      I think that these discussions help to highlight areas that are still a little weak in both cinema and culture.

      Okay :D This was such a great podcast to be a part of. Bringing up so many interesting conversations.

      I do wish people would be talking a bit more about Cloud Atlas as well, though.



  8. 1. Wreck-It-Ralph
    2. Flight
    3. Argo
    4. Cloud Atlas
    5. Man with the Iron Fists
    10. Sinister

  9. If Barbara Brocolli chooses to have a black actor play Bond that is her right as producer. It is my right to disagree with that choice.

    If the concern is an appeal to a ‘wider demographic’ then surely an Indian actor would have greater appeal than a black actor.

    kofi, you suggest that the producers reached out to a qualified actor for the role and that they were NOT looking for a black Bond. That is just nonsense. Elba is black, therefore Bond would be black. That is a conscious decision by the producers to make a Bond film with a black Bond.
    They haven’t just went ‘oh, Idris Elba…he’d make a good Bond!’. They’ve went ‘We need a black Bond, can we get Elba?’. My reason for believing this is simple – a black Bond would make international headlines and they know it.

    I have never, anywhere suggested that Elba is unqualified. In fact quite the opposite. Elsewhere I have stated that Elba is qualified and would make a good Bond. My argument is that it is neither desirable or sensible.
    To have a black Bond is to make a positive statement that being a person of colour is no barrier to success in society and that includes the film industry. I can understand that. It is also a statement negatively that no cultural icons are safe from pc minded tinkerers. With your reasoning Daniel Day Lewis as the greatest living actor of our gneration is eminently qualified to play Martin Luther King in a biopic. But that is neither desirable or sensible.
    But King was a real person and Bond is a fictional creation I hear you cry! Yes, a deliberately white British fictional creation based on a real person from Fleming’s wartime past that has become a cherished white British cultural icon that was instantly recognizable to billions across the globe during the last olympics thanks to 50 years of movie history and countless millions of books sold.
    You call it racism, I call it common sense. A white actor can play a traditionally black role or person but is that really sensible? A black actor can play a traditionally white role, like Bond, but is that really sensible or desirable? I think not.

    My opinions are not foolish or small minded. They are deliberately thought out and come from a degree educated person like yourself. I admire your stance againt bigotry and idiocy but do not include me in your list of bigots and idiots. I am glad you have mixed schools in the States, how very progressive. Although to use the civil rights movement in an argument about the merits (or not) of there being a Black James Bond trivialises the very real struggles that that generation of heroes went through. You are, to coin a phrase, ‘overegging the pudding’.

    • As I SAID, if you READ: They sought him for a VARIETY of reasons – which include the tickets they would sell from people’s curiosity or responsiveness to seeing a black bond. I’m not denying that it’s a factor.

      BUT, I don’t think they saw “Black Bond” first and Elba second, as there are many other (more established) actors they could’ve also been expressing interest in (Will Smith and Denzel being two of them). If anything, their interest was in part fostered by Interent response when this issue FIRST came up over a YEAR ago, and a considerable number of people were up for the change:


      Elba himself said he would NOT pursue the role if it was just “Black Bond” for the sake of it – so I can only assume the producers had something else to show him, that would interest him.

      This whole fantasy that there is a nefarious group of people out there plotting to make racial changes in just one direction (white to non-white), just for the sake of doing it, is RIDICULOUS to me. Yet, it’s the underpinning of what many are suggesting.

      It’s Hollywood – the only color that matters is GREEN. They are weighing what could make the Bond franchise MORE MONEY, and PLEASE BELIEVE, whether for valid reasons (great film) or just morbid curiosity (“Ooooo they’re making him BLACK???”) it would probably sell more tickets.

      • Not sure i’d agree with that. In your counntry I believe this group are called Republicans. ;-)

        • oops, I meant Democrats. (where’s the edit button when you need it!)

  10. I personally think that the general population of people on this earth is mentally retarded but hey, that’s just my opinion and I’m entitled to it ;)
    Human beings aren’t nationalities or cultures, men or women, we are conscious manifestations. When born we are only given the tools of instinctive behavior then later we become conscious beings that are able to manifest thoughts into reality. During our growth process we adopt the conscious manifestations of the people around us and then try to make sense of it. We have only adapted our mental ideals from other being before us thus giving you a name and designation, identifying you as white or black or male or female. I’m sorry to say but your thoughts aren’t your own.
    This debate over the racial identity of the James Bond’s Character is a clear example of it. None of us created Bond’s character but we are willing to strongly debate about the future of this character as if it’s our own children then make personal identifications to it thus effecting our own personal decisions and Manifestations. But I do get it, we love Movies, we love a good Story! I believe Cloud Atlas and the Matrix before it talked about such themes…….
    Truthfully it doesn’t matter as this is about money and at the end of the day it not about what we personally think but what we will support financially (which most of the time are two different things). In most media If sales decline a change will be made. If people spend money to keep that change then………well you get the point!

  11. Lets go- White Chicks>>Black Chicks, imagine a movie like that,lol,seriously tho, it’s kinda weird ten years or further or not,imo blacks and gender works well with some but not all characters,Bond should be white, The Crow can be white, black or female because of the concept, Nick Fury was a comic to movie transition it’s not so weird.Same could be said for Perry White another transition but Bond ain’t XXX.

  12. #1 Wreck-it Ralph
    #2 Cloud Atlas
    #3 Argo
    #4 Flight
    #5 Taken 2
    #10 Silent Hill: Revelation 3D

  13. 1 Wreck-it Ralph
    2 Flight
    3 Cloud Atlas
    4 The Man with the Iron Fists
    5 Argo

    10 Alex Cross


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