Kate is young fashion designer from NYC. In order to finally remove her ex-boyfriend (Eugene) entirely from her life, Kate needs to get him to sign away his interests in the clothing company that they started while dating. Eugene is a seemingly desperate guy with pretty much nothing going for him. When the film A Wonderful Cloud begins, Eugene is having gratuitous sex with a girl he is dating and Kate is flying in from New York City. Kate initially just wants to get the papers signed and go back to her life, but for some reason feels the need to use her iPhone to document the entire visit. Eugene wants to find every way possible to delay her a little while and maybe win her back. After a series of strange encounters with the off-beat neighbors and friends Eugene takes her to, Kate begins to question her relationship with Eugene.
Eugene has pretty much nothing going for him. He has angry outbursts when his affections are not reciprocated. He spends most of his day in bed. He does as little work as possible and is more than happy to ditch his current girlfriend when Kate comes to stay for the weekend. In short, Eugene reminded me so much of an ex-boyfriend of mine that I at one point in the film found myself dry heaving. In more than one scene, Eugene is full-frontal. There is also a deeply awkward scene in which Eugene’s Russian mother calls him on Skype and speaks to him while she is topless.
Kate, as a contrast, has a pretty solid life in New York. She’s moved on to be with a guy she seems to like. Her business is booming and a fashion expert openly praises her and encourage her to move to Los Angeles to be mentored by him.
The film also highlights the strange and often unsettling people Eugene knows in Los Angeles. This includes his Indian neighbor who desperately wants to sleep with Kate, a performance poet who after 7 months hasn’t got over a 5 month relationship, a psychic who can smell energy, and several people who intentionally talk about Kate as she’s walking away. This also includes a long scene with Eugene’s girlfriend, after she poops in the left half of all his shoes when she thinks Eugene is cheating on her. After the first few incidents, I would have been staying in a hotel or crashed an an AirBnB rather than stay with Eugene any longer. Each time his car stalls or stops, I desperately wanted Kate to just call a car like she kept threatening.
Like too many indie movies I’ve seen this year, A Wonderful Cloud goes on far too long. It can only support the Eugene is a loser premise for so long before the viewer just wants Kate to pack her stuff and go, signature or no signature. The initial scene of intense sexual action almost gives one pause enough to stop the film and not return. One of the film’s only saving graces is a scene in which Eugene and Kate wrestle each other on a city street in Los Angeles while fireworks explode in the background. While the film is worth watching, A Wonderful Cloud does not live up to the promotional hype where it was referred to as “the next Annie Hall.” If anything, it will just make you wonder what’s in the water out in Los Angeles.
A Wonderful Cloud is now available for download on VOD platforms.