The Wachowskis aren't afraid to bring philosophy into science fiction. Cloud Atlas, following in the footsteps of The Matrix, goes after a philosophical what-if in order to tell a science fiction tale. And it succeeds. The topic du jour is reincarnation, and what it would mean to have an soul that kept the same personal essence from body to body to body, and through different time. Reincarnation doesn't fit my belief system, but I certainly enjoy a what-if movie that's willing to play around with the concept.
The moviemaking is solid, the acting great, and an interleaved, time-traveling storyline is a neat concept, mostly executed well. It's a playful movie, and one that will make you think after its over. Recomended.