Skip to main content

Fin Argus and Sabrina Carpenter star in Clouds, coming to Disney+.

Disney+

  • Clouds
  • Directed by Justin Baldoni
  • Written by Kara Holden, based on the book by Laura Sobiech
  • Starring Fin Argus, Sabrina Carpenter and Neve Campbell
  • Classification PG; 121 minutes

rating

2.5 out of 4 stars


In the grand tragic love-story tradition of The Fault in Our Stars, Sweet November and, well, Love Story, Clouds arrives practically bearing a box of Disney+-branded Kleenex, so confident is the film that it will have you weeping into your couch cushions by the end of its 121 tear-jerking minutes. And you know what? Good for it. Director Justin Baldoni’s young-adult romance knows exactly which audience it’s playing to, and accomplishes much of what it sets out to do: break your heart, while leaving you humming a sorrowful-yet-catchy tune.

Even though it is based on a memoir titled Fly a Little Higher: How God Answered a Mom’s Small Prayer in a Big Way, Baldoni’s film isn’t some product straight from the evangelical-movie factory floor, nor is it even quasi-spiritual. It is instead purely sentimental, chronicling the adolescence and sudden celebrity of Zach Sobiech (Fin Argus), a Minnesota high-schooler whose inspirational song Clouds became a chart-topping sensation, thanks to both its craftsmanship and its brave display of a teen’s perseverance in the face of a cancer diagnosis.

Story continues below advertisement

The film tells the story of a teenager who becomes a chart-topping sensation in the face of a cancer diagnosis.

Disney+

Honest without being patronizing and chaste without being sanctimonious, Baldoni’s drama makes for effortless, fitfully engaging viewing. It doesn’t strive to break cinematic convention or chart new genre ground, nor does it have to. And the performances that the director coaxes from his too-pretty cast – including Sabrina Carpenter as Zach’s musically talented BFF, Madison Iseman as his adorable and adoring girlfriend and Neve Campbell as his eternally worried yet curiously stylish mom – are thoroughly engaging.

Anyone who has ever watched a movie about young love and the C-word (no, not “Clouds”) will know exactly where the film is headed, as well as the obligatory narrative beats that stretch out the inevitable. But for a sob story, Clouds is not nearly as watery as it could have been.

Clouds is available to stream on Disney+ starting Oct. 16

Plan your screen time with the weekly What to Watch newsletter. Sign up today.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies