Equal parts metaphor and philosophical statement, “Cloud” is so cloaked in symbolism that reality gets subsumed in a Frenchified haze too thick for the average filmgoer. Dealing in issues of disappearance and reappearance, art and love, Sebastien Betbeder’s first feature is full of beautifully composed images, but this tale of people lost and regained thinks itself far more profound than it actually is. Set to hit French screens in mid-September, pic is unlikely to shine through the uncertain cumulus.
A photographer (Bruno Sermonne) gradually losing his sight is troubled by the disappearance of his wife, Marianne (Aurore Clement). In town, Simon (Adrien Michaux) is experiencing moments of blindness followed by a kind of amnesia; driving into the countryside, he blacks out and is helped by the photographer’s daughter, Clara (Nathalie Boutefeu), who has yet to hear that her mother has been found. A thick cloud quickly descends on this hamlet in the Pyrenees, enveloping all the players in a surreal miasma, a literal shroud that will lead everyone to clarity of vision. Thesps all speak in lowered voices, cellos are deeply bowed, piano notes gently repeated.