“Clouds” Review: A Heartfelt True Story about a Life Worth Living

by Kristina Birt

“What do you want to do with your one wild and precious life?”

“Clouds” follows the true story of Zach Sobiech (Fin Argus), a goofy, music-loving high school senior who finds out that his cancer has become terminal and that he only has six months left to live. To make the most of the time he has left, he decides to pursue his dream of writing music, with the goal of releasing an album before his death.

Together, director Justin Baldoni (“Five Feet Apart”) and screenwriter Kara Holden have crafted a steady-paced film with deeply empathetic characters forced to grapple with an immensely difficult situation. The cast members have a natural, homegrown chemistry, including Zach’s parents (Neve Campbell and Tom Everett Scott), his love interest (Madison Iseman), and his best friend Sammy (Sabrina Carpenter). 

The relationships depicted throughout the film are both realistic and heartwarming. Zach and Sammy’s friendship feels both sweet and authentic, as they have to work through the messiness of misunderstandings. 

This film is filled with several heart-wrenching moments, often making it a challenging viewing experience. Moments of tragedy occur often and last long, reflecting the real-life hardships that Zach and his family and friends had to endure. Together, they work to convey the overwhelming sense of dread that comes over Zach’s family as his condition deteriorates. I would not recommend this movie for younger children or people who are grieving the loss of a loved one because of its sobering portrayal of these hardships. 

Despite the difficult circumstances he goes through, Zach still finds the inspiration to write hopeful music (with Sammy’s help, of course). Ranging from goofy to poignant, all of the songs are phenomenal and well worth the listen outside of the film itself. Many of the songs are covers of Zach’s originals by the actors, and Argus’ and Carpenter’s voices complement each other perfectly on acoustic tracks that can easily be listened to on repeat. The song “Clouds,” a toe-tapping, upbeat track that exudes an irresistible earnestness, is truly worthy to be the film’s title.

Ultimately, “Clouds” depicts a heartfelt true story about family, love, friendship, and a life worth living. Overall, the film is exactly what it sets out to be: an inspirational, real-life story that shows that there’s never a better day to start chasing your dreams than today. 

“Clouds” is available to stream on Disney+. 

Kristina Birt is a freshman Business Management major and an A&E writer for Cedars. In her free time, she likes to paint, write fiction, and watch “Psych” with her unit mates. 

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